Saturday, August 15, 2009

Robert Gordon/Fleshtones - 9:30 Club - August 14 2009

Fleshtones - This long running NYC garage rock band still delivers a fun show. They don't let a quiet audience get in the way of their energetic moves and by bringing their style/shtick out full throttle, they easily win over crowds. They are a four-piece with the singer sometimes moving to a sadly under mic'ed farfisa once in a while. Grind it out garage pop that played well in the punk era when they began and has played well long before and since. I've seen many of their moves at a previous show such as the axemen moving in unison and they take their wireless instruments and mics into the crowd many times. The best moment tonight was when the guitarist gave his instrument to the legendary Kim Kane (Slickee Boys) and the bass was handed to a ten year old boy. Kane rocked out, the boy was keeping a simple line going with the drummer and the three band members went into the middle of the crowd and did push-ups. OK, you had to be there. But if you make it to the northeast and get a chance to see these guys, treat yourself to some fun.

Robert Gordon - Although I looked forward to seeing this legendary rockabilly singer, I was also drawn to his backup band which consisted of Chris Spedding on guitar, Glen Matlock on bass and Slim Jim Phantom on drums. Interestingly, all four were relevant in my early punk rock days. Matlock, most obviously, was a founding Sex Pistol. Spedding played guitar for some acts and took the young Sex Pistols into the studio for the first time. Slim Jim Phantom drummed for the Stray Cats and Gordon worked with Link Wray in that era and got the deserved respect from the youngsters for the roots and what they were doing presently. Anyway, Gordon did a lot of classics and the band was solid. Nothing too upstagey, which was both good and bad. Gordon tooka break half way through "cuz I'm gettin' old" leaving each member to sing two of their songs each. Spedding did one where he paid tribute to 10-12 classic guitarists naming them and playing a famous riff which was fun--Hendrix to Paul Kossoff if I heard the last one correctly. Matlock lead them in a "God Save the Queen" and Slim took the lead on "Rock this Town." Gordon came out to finish and the crowd was fully into the set by this point. An older crowd, but quite enthusiastic. Good show with some interesting players I never thought I would see.

Quote of the Night: "I'm the most punk rock of anybody as I hauled my suitcases all through the airport" from Slim Jim Phantom. Poor Glen, still not punk enough for the Sex Pistols.


Unknown said...

i had never in my wildest dreams thought i'd hear a rockabilly version of god save the queen. that alone made my night.

having never seen or heard the fleshtones before, i thought they were very entertaining.

David Hintz said...

Yes, that was fun. I did once see Glen Matlock play it and a couple other Pistols songs on an acoustic guitar in front of a record fair audience in Utrecht, Netherlands. What is next?