New year, new reason to spend money you should be paying your heating bill with.
Alkaline Trio has announced they are dropped the mother of all boxsets in 2018 to celebrate their band turning old enough to buy a 6-pack of Black Label legally in the state of Ohio.
Past Live is the bands full catalog but live versions that were recorded in Chicago over the past couple years in audio and video versions.
The bundles include:
Past Live Box Set 8xLP (Colored Vinyl):
All 8 LPs collected together in a box that is exclusive to the Past Live Deluxe Bundles. All LPs pressed on limited edition colored vinyl.
A 4 disc Blu-ray set features the band performing all 8 albums live in superior 5.1 audio for your listening and viewing pleasure:
Disc 1 – My Shame Is True – Goddamnit
Disc 2 – This Addiction – Maybe I’ll Catch Fire
Disc 3 – Agony & Irony – From Here To Infirmary
Disc 4 – Crimson – Good Mourning
The albums will be sold separately as will the blu-ray set. The boxset however is only available though a bundle. I have this feeling this will sell out fast.
Here is what the band had to say about this awesome collection:
We are proud to unveil a project we’ve been working on for a while now: Past Live. We recorded all eight studio albums live at our show at the Metro in Chicago, and now we bring it to you ONLY for limited time preorder (order by Feb 9). Each album will be a different colored neon vinyl to match the album cover. Additionally, we have a four-disc Blu-Ray (2 albums on each disc) that was recorded in HD and mixed in 5.1 surround sound. For our Super Deluxe bundle we’ve taken our old backdrops from over the years and crafted them in to large tote bags with a zip top and side pocket. Plus you will receive a custom sleeve for all eight vinyl, a band signed 12″x12″ screened and numbered art poster and a Past Live T-shirt.
These limited quantity super deluxe bundles will sell for $315. We will also offer the Deluxe (everything but the backdrop bag), for $275. Individual albums on vinyl and the Blu-ray are available to purchase ala carte.
Preorder yours now. You have until February 9th to do so. You can skip rent for a month, your landlord would understand.
If I am not mistaken, the last time the Gimmes even played Cleveland was back in 2003 at the Warped Tour, so this was a pretty big deal to all of the Gimmes fans out there. Needless to say, I was pretty stoked myself to see they were coming back to my hometown with special guests Pears and Masked Intruder.
The Gimmes roster consists of Spike Slawson (Uke Hunt / Swingin Utters), Joey Cape (Lagwagon), Fat Mike (NOFX), Chris Shiflett (No Use For A Name / Foo Fighters), and Dave Raun (Lagwagon). They have been covering various tunes for over 20 years now and do not take themselves very seriously at all. The result is an overdose of fun covers of songs with a punk edge that in incredibly addicting They have 8 covers albums out now featuring all sorts of genres of music and were bold enough to just release a “Greatestest Hits” album.
The one ever so slight downfall with this leg of the tour was that Fat Mike was not playing due to scheduling conflicts, but Jay Bentley from Bad Religion was filling in on bass duties, so there were no complaints from me. Chris Shiflett also was not playing this stretch of shows, but his brother and Face To Face guitarist, Scott Shiflett was filling in. If you notice the photo of the flier above, you’ll see that they even took the liberty of photoshopping Jay and Scott in appropriately.
The House of Blues slowly filled up before the show started with big thanks to the Cavs and Indians games both going on at the same time making for parking to be a pricey nightmare. People of all ages even including some kids with their punk rock folks were hanging about. I really liked seeing such a variety of fans.
New Orleans hardcore punkers Pears started the night off with a pretty insane set. Sadly, I think less than 10 people were really into them and the rest were just trying to get their place in the pit for the other bands on the bill. Those Pears fans did sing along to every single song and had a hell of a time. Vocalist Zach Quinn noticed this and at one time jumped out into the crowd to hang out with his fans.
I am not sure the crowd really was digging what Pears were playing as many seemed to just observe and take in their set, but when the band played a cover of “Judy is a Punk”, the place erupted. Playing a few songs off last year’s Green Star as well as some from their debut Go To Prison, I really dug what I heard and was reminded that I really need to listen to them more.
Masked Intruder took stage with Officer Bradford, but there was a noticeable inconsistency. Red was missing. Apparently Red was serving time for picking pockets, but Big Luke Ferguson from Lipstick Homicide was filling in on drumming duties. Jarret Nathen from Pears actually filled in for one song too.
Blowing through songs like “I Fought the Law”, “I Don’t Wanna Be Alone Tonight”, and “Saturday Night Alone”, the crowd was robbed of all of their attention by the masked musicians and were perfectly ok with it.
Blue at one point instructed the crowd put their hands up in the air and then the band proceeded to played “Stick Em Up”. There is nothing quite like a sing along with plenty of profanity.
Officer Bradford did his thing throughout the set and at the end pulled a Har Mar Superstar and shed his uniform to reveal a singlet that showed off all of his manly curves. His stage charisma is like Ben Carr from The Mighty Mighty Bosstones in a sense, but far crazier.
Between the dance party going on in the pit with fans and Green, Officer Bradford dancing with the kids who were lucky enough to stand on the backside of the crowd barriers, and even a “literal” gracious mention by Blue to some “Grilled Cheese Sandwiches” place, the band kept the Cleveland crowd wanting much, much more once they finished off their final song of the night, “I Don’t Want to Say Goodbye to You Tonight”.
As this was my first time seeing Masked Intruder after missing countless opportunities before, I was impressed. The Daft Punk of pop punk were hilarious throughout and sounded pretty great live.
The Gimmes took the stage just around 10pm to a packed house and started playing “Summertime” with Spike running onto the stage dressed to impress. From there, it was an all out party with the band dipping into their huge catalog of covers.
I was so stoked to hear “Jolene” and “Rocket Man” as well as “End of the Road” all in one night. The band looked comfortable playing on stage and were just having as much fun as possible.
The Gimmies rocked out their version of the Beach Boy’s “Sloop John B” and Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline” with the crowd singing along loudly. They also gave Barry Manilow props for announcing to the world the truth before playing “Mandy”.
Cape and Shiflett basically manned the sides of the stage throughout the show. Cape at times would just vanish leaving Spike to ask if anyone had seen him while Shiflett was just rocking out and having a good ol’ time with Bentley.
At one point during the set, Spike started rambling off a story about another venue in Cleveland he played at with another one of his bands where a awfully friendly man offered to pleasure him out front. He was quick to admit it was Now That’s Class.
Bentley had me cracking up tons during the set. When it was not his turn to play, he would pretend to start playing, hesitate, make faces, and then jump into action. You could tell he really was enjoying the night. At one point when Spike was shamelessly putting in a plug for Rake It In: The Greatestest Hits album that just came out, a fan in the front row held up the LP and Bentley took it from him. The fan thought he was just going to hold it up for all to see, which he did, but then put it on the drum stage and left it there until after the set. He eventually gave it back, but not before Bentley told the fan he would have to buy another copy.
As a special treat, Spike performed a couple of times with a plugged-in ukulele including a song from his other band Uke-Hunt as well as an amazing, intimate cover of Madonna’s “Crazy For You” and also “I Believe I can Fly” with Shiflett playing a Hawaiian riff with eventually the rest of the band kicking in.
With plenty of comedic banter between the bunch, they interacted with the crowd frequently, cracked jokes, and bashed current events just making for just a fun set. It was like NOFX, but far less wasted.
After leaving the stage only to come back for a four song encore, the band called it a night, but not before thanking the crowd and handing off picks, drumsticks, and setlists to a few lucky fans.
I have to admit, I was kind of worried before the show after hearing that their Pittsburgh show had a shorter set the night before, but the Gimmes played for almost 2 hours. The full setlist is listed below.
It was a solid night for punk rock tunes with friends and fans alike thanks to a trio of Fat Wreck Chords bands. It was my first time seeing all three bands, and I was thoroughly entertained.
Me First and the Gimme Gimmes Set List:
“Who Put the Bomp”
“Sloop John B”
“Crazy For You”
“I Believe I Can Fly”
“Isn’t She Lovely”
“Over the Rainbow”
Spike playing the Uke
“All My Lovin'”
“I Will Survive”
“End of the Road”
It seems like 1995 was forever ago. I was fresh out of high school and naive to the world. There were no smart phones with cameras on them, no Facebook statuses, and people actually talked to one another in the same room. Times were different that’s for sure, and the music scene back then was amazing.
When I heard that Legacy Recordings and Mike Watt decided to release a live show from 1995, I told myself that I just had to check it out. Having been a young fan of Watt in Minutemen and fIREHOSE in the 90s, I became a bigger fan of him in ’95 when he released Ball-hog or Tugboat?, his debut solo album full of special guests including J. Mascis, Adam Horovitz, Dave Grohl, and Henry Rollins just to name a few. Hell, I still have the double LP promo that Mike from Disc Den gave me when he heard how much I loved the album.
In support of that new release, Watt hit the road with Hovercraft and the barely known then Foo Fighters (lead by Grohl who apparently was touring for the first time since Kurt Cobain’s death). He formed quite the impressive backing band for this tour to accompany him consisting of Eddie Vedder (Pearl Jam), Dave Grohl (Nirvana / Foo Fighters), Pat Smear (the Germs), and William Goldsmith (Sunny Day Real Estate / Foo Fighters). This was a once in a lifetime tour and can finally be heard on “ring spiel” tour ’95.
[Side note: I actually caught Watt live in the summer of ’95 when he opened up for Primus at Nautica in Cleveland. I do not recall him having any of the heavy-hitting musicians as his backup band there, but I still have a scar on my left thumb due to someone’s Dr. Martins making contact to a barrier with my thumb in the way. Concert war wounds are the best.]
Recorded live at The Metro in Chicago on May 6th, 1995, Watt’s live show was beyond amazing to listen to and brought me back 20 years to my youth. One could only imagine being at the Metro in person seeing the energy that came from Watt and his special crew taking turns playing behind the legendary bassist.
Having never heard about this live show before, it was insane to hear Watt start the set off with a Daniel Johnston cover of “Walking The Cow”. As someone who has found appreciation in Johnson material over the last 10 years, I know I probably would have been clueless about this track had I seen it played in front of me at this show.
It only made sense for Watt to play his rendition of Chip and Tony Kinman’s (Rank & File) “Big Train” seeing how it was the first single off of Ball-Hog. At first, the crowd really did not seem into it, but that soon changed.
“Against the 70s” was a straight up jam with Watt and Vedder singing hard. Perhaps more toned down on Vedder’s part over the studio version, I actually liked this live version better.
“Drove Up from Pedro” deserves to be heard especially if you were too young too have seen a show in the 90s. This track alone brought back so many memories and it was all in thanks to the crowd. They absorbed the sounds when needed, and then just belted out their approval.
After playing fIREHOSE’s “Makin’ the Freeway”, Watt took a moment to ask the crown to chill out on the crowdsurfing by saying: “You like those people rolling all over your heads? Why don’t we give it a break.” Classic.
“Forever…One Reporter’s Opinion” had Pat Smear offering vocals alongside Watt. The song was just nuts and you could feel the venue explode at the end.
The cover of Blue Oyster Cult’s “The Red and The Black” was one of the best songs I heard on this set. I loved his take on the song , especially the ending.
Another excellent cover was of a Madonna song, “Secret Garden”. The best part was that just hearing Smear sing. Was this a joke? I think only the performers will know. Regardless of their intentions, it was a fun listen.
fIREHOSE’s “Powerful Hankerin'” ended the show with just Watt on stage doing what he does best. The solo playing was perfect for closing out an amazing show. The crowd approved and so did this listener the moment after a humbled Watt said thank you and left the stage.
If you were a kid of the 90s who hit up all the cool underground shows, this album really deserves to be in your collection. If you are someone who just likes to listen to live rock and roll, it doesn’t get any better than this. I just with there was a full video to accompany this performance.
At least there is this:
As I was trying to search for more info on Watt’s ’95 tour, I found an online journal called “Clam Blow” Tour. There was a pretty cool read from Watt and band mates in Cleveland. They talked about playing Repeat The Beat Records in Brooklyn, OH. How I missed that back then, I will never know. Apparently CBS was even there covering the performance. Read the entries from 7/28 and 7/29.
“ring spiel” tour ‘ 95 is available online on CD and LP as well as at your favorite local music shop. It’s also on digital music streaming sites like Apple and Spotify.
Akron, OH’s prom kings Worship This! stopped out at Bad Racket earlier this summer and played one of my favorite OG songs, “Best Parts”.
Check it out:
Bad Racket is one of the coolest recording studios in Cleveland and have been doing their thing since 2009. They specialize in welcoming bands into their studio to play a song and be filmed while doing so. If you want to see more amazing acts do their things, click the below link:
[Passing the mic/keyboard/whatever over to my pal Jason Utes who covered the recent Falcon show that filled up the Grog Shop on Wednesday night. Thanks Utes for the killer review! It appears that I missed one hell of a show]
“I wanna die and I don’t care who knows.”
If you’re reading this, you are probably already a fan of The Falcon. Otherwise, if I told you I was going to see a band with such lyrical presentation, you would imagine something far different from what I experienced Wednesday night.
Ostensibly, The Falcon is a band that exists primarily for the sake of the band members to get together and have fun playing music, free from the expectations of their higher-profile projects which include The Lawrence Arms, Alkaline Trio, The Loved Ones, and the Smoking Popes, to name just a few. Seriously, Neil could add probably a dozen more credits on his own, and this band is now one degree of separation from Blink-182 (more on that later).
So, if the band exists in the name of a good time, how is that going to translate to the stage when they are touring in support of the mostly bleak and harrowing (but excellent) Gather Up the Chaps?
Granted the album cover, which features a despondent leather daddy in the same vein as certain Minor Threat and Rancid album covers, achieves a humorous yet somber sexuality that Third Eye Blind only achieves on accident, this record is still a serious undertaking even with song titles such as “Hasselhoff Cheeseburger” and “You Dumb Dildos” boldly printed on the sleeve. (Enough about the album itself, you can check out the review of the album). Rest assured, the answer is that the show was a great time for band and crowd alike.
The Lippies, from Grand Rapids, kicked things off for me (Note: I did not make it in time for Blacklister to kick things off). The band took the stage led by Tonia Broucek who addressed the crowd with a politeness that bordered on timid that simply didn’t last. Once the band kicked into their brand of 1990’s Lookout Records reminiscent punk rock, she became an authoritative force that demanded (and received) control of the entire Grog Shop.
At one point, she entered the crowd to lay on the ground in a mock temper tantrum and her sheer aggression parted the crowd like riot police. Broucek easily had the most confident and effortless stage command of the entire night. The real pleasant surprise of the set came when the band receded for a haunting solo rendition of “It Boils” off of their eponymous full-length that left everyone rattled. Standout songs to check out: “302” and “It Boils” which you can find on their BandCamp page.
Next up were Worriers, touring in support of the incredible Imaginary Life. This band became one of the highlights of the night for me [as] every song sounded fundamentally different but clearly had the same fingerprints. For fans of thoughtful and melodic rock, hopefully they won’t mind that I mentally catalogued them in the company of The Weakerthans. This was definitely a more highbrow compliment to what the Falcon had in store next (again, hopefully taken as praise by both parties). Check out “Glutton for Distance” and “Plans” on their BandCamp page.
By the time the PA started blaring Bad Lip Reading’s “The Bushes of Love” (I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that Lovegun played just before), The Falcon took the stage. From the opening riff of “The Angry Cry of the Angry Pie” the show was the usual onslaught of humor and spastic punk rock.
Having only two full length albums and an EP, all of their material was represented, but decidedly centered around songs from Gather Up the Chaps. “Skeleton Dance” prefaced by a sarcastic “this will be great, wait till you get a load of this” and “War of Colossus” being high points for me.
Between songs, the band took playful jabs at one another and Cleveland itself. There were at least three instances of pointing out that Cleveland is indefensible to a touring band’s gravity toward Cleveland Steamer jokes. They quipped that the crowd “Cleveland steamed the wrinkles out of [the song] ‘Sailor’s Grave’.”
Brendan Kelly reveled in pointing out how much Dave Hause hates ska and that he is now sentenced to playing the Falcon’s own ska anthem “The Unicorn Odyssey” on a nightly basis.
Dan Andriano stood helpless as Kelly mused on Dan’s Alkaline Trio bandmate Matt Skiba’s undead persona as well as a few taunts such as, “you BLINK and you’re out of a job!”
Dave Hause is a welcome addition and it’s great to see him playing punk rock again (The Loved Ones will soon be in the midst of a 10th anniversary tour for Keep Your Heart that I’m selfishly hoping will lead to the band being more active. I also don’t mean this to discount Dave Hause’s fantastic solo efforts)
The intended purpose of the Falcon is still front and center, a group of friends having a great time and not taking things too seriously. Still, the Falcon’s set still had its heartfelt moments. On the day of this show, Merle Haggard passed away and Kelly, who has a prominent “Mama Tried” tattoo, was audibly choked up when he memorialized his hero with a story of Merle and Johnny Cash’s first meeting.
Sadly, due to the nature of this being a “side project” for everyone involved, it may be a while until we hear from the Falcon again. This was their first proper tour since 2007. Still, as the show ended with the band leading a conga line around the Grog Shop to Paul Simon’s “You Can Call Me Al” (yes, really) everyone in the club could only hope that this would be the first annual Gathering of the Chaps in Cleveland.
Special thanks to Toby Jeg of Red Scare Industries for inviting us to cover the show, and thanks to Brian for letting me stink up the joint on his behalf.
The Angry Cry of the Angry Pie
War of Colossus
Huffing the Proverbial Line Off the Proverbial Dong or The Blood and the Frog
You Dumb Dildos
The Skeleton Dance
If Dave Did It
The Fighter, The Rube, The Asshole
The La-Z Boy 500
[Man, Utes, this was a damn fine review. I think I just should give you my login info to the site and call it a life. Thanks for covering a solid evening of tunes! – Brian]