Freak City, LA proved to be as advertised, freaky, anything goes, dirty, grimy, stank nasty, funky, no fuzz ridin’ your buzz, basically our style… We pulled up circa 12PM into the back alley where Freak City’s Manager Steve helped us plug into their power supply and juice the beast up for the day. Shortly thereafter the Henry Clay People arrived to breath in the urine scented air and stink up the inside of the van with their rock and roll.
I have said here before that I appreciate a band that shows up and puts on their best rock and roll face. To that, the Henry Clay People did not disappoint. They pissed in the alley and pounded beers for breakfast, and that my friends is a recipe for a successful Jam in the Van. They played 4 songs and utilized the space in the van better than most bands have used it. The guitarists were climbing all over the couches and front seats, the drummer had a symbol set up outside the window, and lead singer Joey Siara had such a good buzz going that he did a full on face plant during the band’s last song when he leaned a little too much into the mic and toppled to the ground with it. That’s the kind of energy the Jam Van is here for, that’s the kind of rocking that we love. So thanks Henry Clay People, you guys surprised the hell out of me on Saturday, the set is going to look great.
Thanks also to Family of the Year and Stab City. These bands filled our Van the rest of the day/night, and they both left their own varying levels of stank in it. Family of the Year slowed the tempo and mood down a little bit during the middle of the day, but then when the whiskey was good and cracked, last minute ad Stab City showed up at 10 PM and thrashed the hell out of that Winnebago. Stab City was the first real punkish/metalish act that we’ve had inside of the beast. It was also the first act that I’ve ever sat inside of to watch perform. I can’t say I’m disappointed in my choice. These guys were loud, and even though their tunes probably aren’t for everybody, I dug the hell out of it. If you like to lose yourself in noise, if you like to headbang really fast, and jump around to thrash rock until you feel ok with yourself, then I highly recommend checking out Stab City. You could always just wait until their Jam Van session comes out, but that may be a minute, as it’s the first of our Buddyhead sessions, and Gorilla and I have go track down the illusive Mr. Head before we can finalize the set. However, I promise that when it’s finished it’s going to mace your face like a fucking cougar (ed. note: the cat type, not the old slag type). I also promise that they gave us a bad-ass t-shirt to give away, so get psyched for that. I also promise that the vocals tracked, no matter how raging the instruments were… If cabin boy says they tracked, they tracked. So to dude who bet me they didn’t (ed. note: you know who you are), bet still stands.
As for the rest of the evening, once the Van Jamming was concluded, Gorilla and I slipped inside of Freak City to check out the Tom Tom Magazine event that was taking place. We only caught one band (ed. note: omitted) closing set, but we made the most of it. (Ed. note: further Omitted) Now when I say that Gorilla and I made the most of it, I mean that in the sense that we did what we usually do in most situations, and that’s act like the biggest children in the room.
To that affect we put on one hell of an x-rated shadow puppet show on the wall above the stage. There were head banging shadow dogs, fighting shadow birds, and shadow sex. It was better than any light show I’ve ever seen (ed. note: Disregarding Widespread Panic because that shit is AWESOME)! Also, remember a couple weeks back when I said I’d been at Freak City and that I really wanted to shoot a 3 pointer at the basket that hangs over where the drummer sets up, but that my boy Antoine the Security guard said he’d kick me out if I did? Yeah, you remember. Anyways, since Antoine (ed. note: ‘Toine) and I are on pretty good terms now I decided I could give it a shot. First attempt was not good. I must have had “substance abuse arm” or some shit, cause I missed damn hard. Hit the ceiling and the ball dropped like a rock towards the bassists’ head. Feeling bad about almost hitting dude I decided to take credit for the throw, saying “I did it.” The bassist apparently didn’t appreciate my honesty because he replied with his middle finger. Well, I don’t know about how you guys played sports when you were kids, but when I was a kid, if you catch someone on the field with a punk-ass attitude that doesn’t accept your apology and smile about it, well then the only thing to do is slide tackle the shit out of them again and go on with your day. So I shot that ball again during their last song, and even though Gorilla claims it only hit the bottom of the net and looked like a swish, I’m 97% sure that it went in the basket. Regardless, I got to shoot that shit, and that pretty much made my night. ‘Toine even gave me a high five on my way out.
After the Tom Tom show all that was left to do was abuse stuff and play in Freak City and the Alley. Crafts Services and Mrs. Crafts Services were there posted up in lawn chairs next to the dumpsters where genuine sludge was fermenting. I’d say we all had a pretty decent time, anything went, including me apparently roofying myself at some point in the day/night, because I didn’t feel several different appendages at several differing points in the day/night and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t the fish taco I had for lunch that made my stomach queasy…
At the end of the evening when all our friends and associates had split it was just Gorilla and me, and our green and blue monster stuck in what we’ve decided to call “Sherm Alley” for the night. We were responsible this evening and kept our drunk asses off of the road (ed. note: technically we had no choice because we were blocked in 5 cars deep, however, we were gonna be responsible regardless). Freak City kept their loud ass music going until about 4:30 AM, but there wasn’t anyone there, just ‘Toine and his fellas getting’ rowdy smoking ciggies in the alley. Gorilla slept like an angel because he got the only blanket in the beast. I shivered my face off. Woke up twice to pee in a whiskey bottle, and found something close to sleep at around 5 AM.
Given that we passed out in a place that was dirtier than probably 99% of places that people in America slept last night (ed. note: I’m basing this off of my experiences as a child in Hells Kitchen during crack’s hey-day) Gorilla and I decided we’d have a leisurely morning, rousing ourselves rather late. We gathered together our things that were still scattered around the alley. I left my whiskey bottle filled with piss in the alley for an unsuspecting bum (ed. note: pause right there those of you being all like “oooh you’re such an asshole for pranking a bum… I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, bums ain’t bums because they did good shit before they were bums. Most of them are bums because they like PCP and touching on people that don’t want them touching on them, so shut up and thank me for making a petter ass drink piss).
The story ends where we saddled up, and rumbled out. Freak City in the books. Keep your eyes peeled for sessions coming from The Henry Clay People, Family of the Year, Gothic Tropic, and Stab City. Shit’s gone get lively, real quick. It would behoove you to stay dialed-in because all of the bands left us some really cool shit to give away when we release their videos… So Excciiiiiitte.
Links for the Day:
– Sing it like you’re sad girl… (via Prefix)
– I’m scared of Texas, but I’ll fuck with folk rock… (via Band Soup)
– Touching… (via Stereogum)
– Pretty nice for some yucky shit (via Stereogum)
– More yucky shit…(via Stereogum)
Los Angeles these are our suggested shows for the week of 9/26 – 10/2 :