The BGN News Archive
November 6, 2017
There was way too much going on this week to keep up with; you
had to pick and choose. Our week started on Wednesday at O’Brien’s.
They have had regular punk bills.
We were revisiting Moist Boy after liking
them in September. We got that immediate fix of punk with
the nasal vocal. That goes a long way with us.
We were able to get into the songs even more. The song "I
Want to be A GMO" was still a highlight. They covered “Chinese
Rocks”. Video below. The guitarist did a few leads while
tugging on the whammy bar the whole time which made it sound like
it was in an eastern scale. Nice trick. You can hear it in the
In the last two songs the energy levels went up. It seemed like
they were just getting warmed up.
Sex Snobs were more punk in the same vein and
that was fine but then they did more. Their first song had the
chorus “Staying up all night” and had a simple repetitive
riff as a hook. They had our interest right off. That song is
called “Ritalin” and it's on their Bandcamp
Then there was a song about picking strawberries that had a pop
feel along with the punk. The lyrics were more positive and light
rather than the usual negative punk thing. The lyrics have someone
walking through the woods and asking, "Where’s my strawberries?”
As the songs went on we could see that there were a few things
going on. One song called “Pineapples” got to a XTC/Dukes
of Stratosphere area. They had a song that might have been called
“I Want to Be A TV” which is funny because Moist Boy
actually had a TV on stage. The songs went, “ I want to
be a TV. You can be my VCR and we will be attached.”
Listening to their recorded albums you can see they have developed
since 2014. Their last album was recorded by Steve Albini. Only
“Ritalin” is on their Bandcamp. All the other very
interesting songs we heard look like they are not recorded. This
is a group to pay attention to.
The Conmen had a real bad time on stage. They
were plagued with tuning problems. We’ll hand it to them,
they didn’t ignore it; they took the time to fix it but
that was a big section of their set. Up to about half the set
they were only able to play two Ramone style songs.
We didn’t think too much of it and were going to bail
when they got things fixed. Then the next five songs were a revelation.
We could finally see what they were doing. It was indeed Ramone
style punk but just different enough. The first song that hit
was “Too Tough to Dance”. That’s the name of
their Demo material but that song isn’t on it. They had
the power and the background vocals were done well. They proved
themselves with those last songs. Their demo
on Bandcamp doesn’t come up to what we heard live.
And that was a great punk line up for a Wednesday.
Friday: it was the best of days, it was the worst of days. The
problem was there was so much going on (best) that you had to
choose (worst). There were groups of all kinds at all club levels.
Human Sexual Response and Unnatural
Axe at HOB, Woogles and Muck
and the Mires at ME UP, Breeders at
Sinclair, Badfinger in Arlington, Indonesian
Junk and Justine and the Unclean at
Tavern at the End of the World, Black Beach and
Oslo at O’Briens and good shows at PA’s
and Cantab. Some people did the club hop from HSR/Axe to Woggles.
human Sexual Response and Unnatural Axe at HOB
Photo: Miss Lyn
Blowfish at Woggles: I wanted to see the whole
bill at the ME UP but I thought it would be crowded and hot. It
turned out to be not too crowded and not unbearably hot. But then
Woggles used every minute right up to 1a.m., so that
would have been a long night anyway, although many did it.
I walked in while Stupidity from Sweden were
near the end of their set. It was excellent garage/punk. I thought
I heard a lyric, “it’s all shite” which sounded
Irish to me via Stiff Little Fingers. They have all the right
influences like the Sonics and the Fleshtones. The lead singer
was craning off the end of the stage to emphasize the lyrics.
It wasn’t all fancy but it was forceful.
John Keegan saw them in March
of 2016 and was prescient with the line “Put these guys
on a bill with the Standells or the Woggles and set the room on
fire!”. Here they were and the room at this point was hot.
When the music stopped and I talked to people they were quick
to say that they loved Andrea Gillis’ set.
They evidently covered Sweet’s “No
You Don’t” . Andrea can go from gospel to the
Sweet, no problem.
Muck and the Mires
Having Muck and the Mires coupled with The
Woggles was the magic of this bill. You had to mentally
strap yourself in as Muck started their rush
of tunes. Like usual there was hardly a pause. The excitement
level went up and never came down.
We’ve heard it dozens of times and hopefully will hear
it dozens more. If a group from out of town came and put in a
set like theirs I’d be jealous as hell for the place they
came from. We never take them for granted.
Then the thing happened that we thought would happen. The
Woggles took the stage and continued at the frantic level
that Muck and the Mires left at. We didn’t know at the time
that it would continue for another hour and a half. We’ve
seen The Woggles a few times: 2009
at TT’s , and the ME
in 2005 . For most people, once you see them you go to every
show after that.
The Woggles started in 1987. After seeing the endless energy
they put into this show you can imagine those early years. Decibel
Dennis (also at the HSR show) was on to these guys from
the start. Two knee replacements after he is still front row center
and bopping around. The music is garage with a heavy dose of R&B.
Like Muck time has given them a huge bank of songs. They seem
to go on and on with no end in sight. All the songs are unique
enough that you never get the feeling that they are doing the
same thing over and over. There always seems to be another variation
of a simple five note riff that hooks your mind as a gripping
rhythmic drive grips your body. They did one song about The
Prisoner TV show. It that song the guitarist played the signature
soundtrack theme. That was a cool moment.
Mighty Manfred talks with the lilt of a southern
preacher and after 90 minutes of upbeat rock, it felt like a revivalist
meeting as much as anything else. Other times he seemed like a
carnival barker and you were the gullible hick taking it all in.
Manfred jumped into the audience a few times and ended up on the
floor. At the end only the drummer was on stage as the other three
were down on the dance floor. Buzz Hagstrom the
bass player was carried on someone’s shoulders back to the
stage. Even though the set was long, it was so fast moving that
you wished you could go back and replay parts of it so you could
digest it better.
These are the gigs we hate to write about because it’s
all about being there. Those that saw all four bands had one fantastic
gig. A few people came after the Human Sexual Response
show and saw some of Muck and all of the Woggles.
What an amazing night for them too.
There was that excitement about this Friday. People were primed
for the Human Sexual Response show and ready to continue the good
feelings afterwards. The next day our Facebook feeds looked like
the Human Sexual Response home feed with posts about the HOB concert
coming from all.
We took the opportunity for an early Saturday with the afternoon
Midway show. It was a chance to see Hummingbird
Syndicate and Fireking who we haven’t’
seen in a while.
Billy Connors Project
The Billy Connors Project we've seen, but this
time they had a new bass player Larry Newman who
proved to be good fit. He played simple lines and was especially
effective in the slow songs where he gave them a sense of momentum
with the help of veteran drummer Ray Fernandes.
They started with “Stranded” from their
latest CD EP. That seems to be everyone’s favorite song
by consensus. Like a lot of Billy’s songs, it’s mid-tempo
with a chord sequence that has a hook and it hooks you right of
the bat. The singing, which more and more is a combo of Billy
and Adam Sherman, is working big time.
A lot of people also also mention "Hurry Up Sundown"
as a favorite song which they played from the EP. That song has
a different feel to it. Lyrically it reminds me of “Paint
It Black” where the singer wants everything to stop or die
because things are just not going right. They did an old Boize
song “Limousine Jean”. They played one of our current
favorite songs “Knock Down Day”. The song was full
of feeling and when Adam sings the line, “that last round
was a knock out day," you feel the full emotional punch.
Video below. Hopefully that will get recorded when they go back
into the studio soon. They played a few new songs. One was called
"Grace’s Hideaway". Billy says they're writing
new songs and playing them as fast as they can learn them.
Hummingbird Syndicate have kept themselves busy
with lots of shows. Knowing Jon Macey they are
probably recording also. There are six members of the group and
they all are top notch players. You just sit back and enjoy how
they deliver the songs.
Most of the material came from their excellent new CD Pop
Tricks....Macey knows all the pop tricks and you
hear them in every song. One revealing moment was from comparing
two songs in a row. The first was "Where Were You When I
Needed You” the Grassroots hit from 1966. They cover it
faithfully and revel in those harmonies with the three vocalists.
They then did "Romance" the first cut from the CD. That
song compared equally with the Grassroots. In both songs you know
you are being moved by the song craft. The sweet vocals sweep
you up because the lyrics are worthy and the melody is an earworm.
They have a few songs of the same quality like “Sometimes
It Just Gets This Way”. Video below. That’s the level
which marks everything Jon does.
They kept things interesting with a cover of Prince’s “When
You Were Mine” sing by Lynn Shipley. One
interesting thing about the Syndicate is that they are capable
of handling songs from multiple genres with authority.
We love keeping up with Jon especially since
he actually is responsible for creation of the very first Boston
Groupie News. He relates the story in our
BGN interview with him…
Next we got a chance to see Fireking without
Smitt E Smitty. Smitty makes such a visual and
aural impression that it took some getting used to the new guy.
He's Jonathan Screnci who also plays with Gymnasium
and is a general manager of the Blue Man Group. So, qualified?
Sure. The bass player Drew was playing out of
Larry Newman’s bass rig and for the first time we could
hear his bass lines clearly. Other times it was lost in the band
sound. We’re thinking he should upgrade his cabinet! It
was like hearing him for the first time.
Tony Kaczynski was in good voice and with him
that means a clear higher register that he uses strategically
to bring a song home. It’s a unique timbre that stamps his
About half the songs were from the CD Double Trouble
and half from the next CD that will be called Speedway.
The're naming their CDs after Elvis Presley movies. We loved Double
Trouble when it came out and time has only increased our
appreciation. We never can get enough of that material live. They
ended the set with “Dressed For the End of the World”
from Double Trouble. They threw in a section from the
Beatle’s "Rain" at the end. The bass and drums
pinned that section perfectly.
Tony has been jet setting around the world playing with Magnetic
Fields. His last show was in Australia. He’s living
the rock and roll life.
And in other news.....
#1- RIP Suzie Phelps - owner and proprietress
of Hubba Hubba - um er I remember a night with
Suzie and a boy toy on a chain collar there to clean up after
us...or else..... but Suzie was a purveyor or punk fashion (and
other fun stuff) since way back...we will miss you SUZIE.. and
thank you!!! Here is a Vanyaland
story on Suzie and the Hubba
Hubba fb page.
From, Vanyaland: "“Bought my first pair of Doc’s
from Suzi, first leather jacket too,” writes PanzerBastard’s
Keith Bennett on Facebook. “And she put a spiked gauntlet
on hold for me when I was 14 and didn’t bat an eyelid when
I paid for it with $19 worth of quarters. A one of a kind lady
who ran a one of a kind shop. Boston and Cambridge Headbangers,
punks, skins and goths owe her a huge debt of gratitude. Adds
comedian and TV Guidance Counselor host Ken Reid on Twitter: “RIP
Susan. Without Hubba Hubba I wouldn’t have had a place to
buy Stooges shirts, studded belts and leather bracelets when I
was a teenager.”
And that leads us to our "And it's come to this" and
Anarchy Cotton-Blend Field Jacket for $375.00...not sure about
the pants...you can most likley buy those for a hefty sum as well.
Please Kill Me has a decent article on some of the Women
in Punk Rock "Punk Rock was not a boys club Women played
major roles as musicians, writers, photographers, artists, clothing
designers…and still do" Check
it out here.
The WMBR yearly fund raiser continues till Wednesday
Nov 8. They always have the best incentives to give. CDs, books,
shirts and concert passes. You can
check that list out & DONATE here. What would life be
for some us without the WMBR and the Late Risers Club? We dare
not think of it!!! So make sure to listen in and donate.
So City Winery is finally going to open...meaning
actually open. But there aren't any punk shows on the list....only
thing of interest is a way back machine goodie Ian Hunter
on November 18th. Oh well, maybe they will spice things
up down the road. Also their prices are through the roof high.
Thrash N Bang's 47th Annual Xmas Pizza Party
takes place Sun Dec 17 at 4pm at the Midway Cafe
in Jamaica Plain MA. It costs 5 dollars, is all-ages, and besides
the five great bands you get to hear Crimespree, CAC,
The Grommets, The Sewer Buddies and Jenn Lombari
- you get to eat all the pizza you can fit into your
face at one time.
Boston scenester from the day and author Clea Simon's
book World Enough is available on Amazon:
"This intriguing, hardhitting, intricately-plotted mystery
set in Boston’s clubland marks an exciting new departure
for cozy author Clea Simon. The Boston club scene may be home
to a cast of outsiders and misfits, but it’s where Tara
Winton belongs; the world she’s been part of for the past
twenty years. Now, one of the old gang is dead, having fallen
down the basement stairs at his home." Buy
The Svetlanas left the Barbed Wire Dolls
tour midway through, and right after their Boston show. There
was someone with a Nazi symbol either in the audience or in a
band and that thoroughly upset Svetlanas. Their most recent statement
says: "We don't want and can't continue to support on or
off the stage a band that after a long face to face talk says
everyone, including nazis, are welcome at their show and that
an SS skull patch is just an opinion. .....we are glad to announce
the S.Korean band 57 decided to leave this ambiguous tour as well."
What looks to be a gorgeous book on Bauhaus'
career is coming out soon: "New Book By Influential Post-Punk
Group Bauhaus Entitled Bauhaus Undead - The Visual
History and Legacy of Bauhaus Now Available for
Special Early Pre-Order, In Both Signed and Unsigned Editions
- Written by original founding member Kevin Haskins!" You
read more and pre-order here.
SPECIAL DEAL FOR BGN READERS: We've mentioned
Curt Weiss's book about Jerry Nolan of
the New York Dolls entitled Stranded in
The Jungle and we've mentioned the readings coming
up in NYC, Provi and Boston- well you lucky BGN readers can get
a SPECIAL BGN DISCOUNT on the book!! Regular
price is $24.99 BGN Price is only $14.99!! Just
visit The BackWing
Store and enter code BGNSTRANDED at checkout to get your copy
for just $14.99!
Here's some good shows coming up .....
November 9 (Thursday)
Randy Black and the Heathcroppers will
be performing at Tavern At The End Of The World The band will
be doing a set at @ 9:30 followed by a set from the Emily
November 9 (Thursday) The
Proletariat at ONCE Ballroom w/ Siege and
November 9 (Thursday) If
you are in NYC or can get to NYC Celebrate Stranded in the
Jungle: Jerry Nolan's Wild Ride the new book by Curt
Weiss that covers 40 years of L.A.M.F. and is A Tale
of Drugs, Fashion, the New York Dolls, and Punk Rock. Also there'll
be music by with Greg Allen's Fringe Religion, and ...book reading,
panels, Q&A, guests, book signing. It's at The Delancey in
the Lower East Side 7-10PM FB
Page for directions and more info He's at Out of the Blue/Cambridge
on the 12! see below.
November 10 (Friday) CH3
(Channel 3), The FUs, Silver Screams, Fast Times Punk at
The Middle East Up - 8-Midnight show
tix here Read about
CH3 here. there's links for tix etc too
November 10 (Friday) The
Proletariat are at Narrows Center for the Arts w/
Black Beach in Fall River, MA (FB
page for info)
November 11 & 12 (Sat/Sun) 2nd
Annual Salem Punk Rock Flea Market at Notch Brewing (283R
Derby St, Salem, Massachusetts 01970) 11AM- 5PM This year it's
moved to Notch Brewing for a bigger location. There will be indoor
and outdoor vendors. No admission charge. check out the
November 11 (Saturday) Fundraiser
to Benefit Vernon West's battle with Leukemia is taking
place in Danvers, MA at Breakaway. Vernon was in Sass a band around
Boston very early on ,,,we had just heard from him a few months
back and he was putting together a band with his son. We wish
Vernon a winning battle!! If you can get to Danvers please support
this benefit. Here's the FB
page for directiosn etc. There is also A GoFundMe page for
those wanting to donate - that's
November 11 (Saturday)
A Matinee Show - Keith Brooks
started the tradition of doing a benefit every year to help out
his fellow vets. We are going to keep it going and donate in his
name to operation delta dog--an organization that trains service
dogs for vets. Come hoist one for a good cause in memory of our
buddy. on the bill: The Welch Boys, The Damaged, Held
Hostage, Out.Live.Death, Working Poor USA at The Midway
4-8PM show FB
November 11 (Saturday)
Hasselfest #9 this year has Pere
Ubu and a ton of other bands at Once- get
the info on the FB page here.
November 12 (Sunday) Curt
Weiss covers 40 years of L.A.M.F. and is A Tale of Drugs,
Fashion, the New York Dolls, and Punk Rock in his new book Stranded
in the Jungle: Jerry Nolan's Wild Ride Also, rock and roll
with the Thigh Scrapers, Tiger Bomb, Moto, Glider,
and the Lyres starts at 2:15. Here's
the FB page Also added to this show Greg Allen &
The Fringe Religion who go on right after the reading.
November 12 (Sunday) WOW!!-
Jerry's Kids, Straw Dog, The Pist, Ancient Filth, Conscript
at Alchemy in Providence RI FB
And further out we have...
November 15 - 18 (Weds - Sunday)
Internati onal Pop Overthrow is at PA's in
Union Square Somerville. Check
out the website for bands, set times etc.
November 16 (Thursday) Celebrate
The Rat with Jim Harold, The Nervous Eaters,
The Dogmatics, Willie Loco Alexander and Emily
Grogan at The Ballroom at the Hotel COmmonwealth 6PM-
November 17 (Friday) Greg
Allen's Fringe Religion, The Stanleys (from Australia),
Mercury On Mars and Classic Ruins
are at Club Bohemia
November 18 (Saturday) Cheech
(EP Release), The McGunks, Steal Reserve
(NY), Hopeless (mems of Reason To Fight) at The
November 19 (Sunday) OC45
w/ Diablogato, On the Cinder at Great
November 22 (Wednesday)
Stray Bullets, The Radiator Rattlers, Cactus Attack, Art
Thieves, Coffin Salesman at OBrien's
November 25 (Saturday) The
Monsieurs will be on Brian Young's A Crash Course
for the Ravers 91.5 WMFO 1-4Pm
December 1 (Friday)
The Monsieurs (LP Release Show),
Nice Guys, Earthquake Party at Great Scott’s
December 1 (Friday) The
Dream Syndicate, The Richard Lloyd Group and DJ
Carbo at Once
December 2 (Saturday) DJ
Easy Ed presents: The Cranktones plus
Easy Ed's Record Hop! 4-8PM matinee at The Midway...followed
December 2 (Saturday)
Watts (45 Release), Diablogato,
Duck & Cover, A Bunch of Jerks at The Midway
December 8 (Friday) Rumbar
records is throwing a HUGE record release party of the
new Justine and the Unclean record Get
Unclean....It's at Once and there will be bands
in the ballroom and in the Lounge. Check out this list!: In the
Ballroom- The Upper Crust, Hey Zeus, Tom Baker and the
Snakes, Justine and the Unclean ....In the Lounge - Cold
Expectations, Roy Sludge Trio, Pinecone Teeth and Jay
Allen - doors at 7:30 show starts at 8:15.
December 9 (Saturday) The
Raging Teens are turning 21 this year.. and that's "Drinkin'
Age!" There's releasing a 45 called "Drinkin' Age"
on Swelltune Records to celebrate their 21 years as a band! AND
that means The Raging Teens Holiday Shindig Record Release!
With The Raging Teens, Nate Gibson, Bloodshot Bill, Sean
Mencher at Great Scott. FB
December 9 (Saturday) Radiator
Rattlers, Brix'n Mortar,Lipstick Boys, The Grubs at The
Chit Chat Lounge in Haverhill FB
December 10 (Sunday) Horton's
Holiday Hayride featuring Reverend Horton Heat
& Junior Brown with special guests The
Blasters & Big Sandy at The Sincalir
December 14-16 (Thurs-Sat) Bowery
Boston presents Street Dogs Wreck the Halls Thursday
12/15- with special guests The New Darkbuster
& Taxi Driver at The Sinclair -
Proceeds benefit Massachusetts Fallen Heroes
December 15 (Friday) Street
Dogs Wreck the Halls with special guests The
Pinkerton Thugs & The Abductors at
December 15 (Friday) Street
Dogs Wreck the Halls with special guests A Wilhelm
Scream & Michael Kane & the Morning Afters
at The Sinclair
December 16 (Saturday) Bent
Shapes with Beware the Dangers of a Ghost Scorpion
@ Great Scott- this is Bent Shapes' FINAL SHOW
December 17 (Sunday) Thrash
N Bang's Annual Xmas/Pizza Party Show! with Crimespree,
CAC, The Grommets, The Sewer Buddies, and Jenn
Lombari & special guests (Matinee 4-8PM)
January 6 (Saturday) Nervous
Eaters, Watts and David Age & The Regrets
at ThunderRoad FB
January 13 (Saturday) Lyres,
Paul Collins Beat, Boston Cream at Thunder Road
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Toni Kaczynski - Fireking
Billy Connors Project