Halloween in Boston means a few things. There are the things that everyone knows about, the things that aren't boston specific: parties, costumes, and all that nonsense. Then there's the punk rock aspect: The annual fork in hand show. This means that Lan$down $treet, the home to black leather clad eurotrash clubbers and trust-fund sluts gets flooded with punkers. They scream, they puke, they drink, they make a mess, they cause a scene, and it's beautiful, for obvious reasons.
The show started at five, because it's an all-ages show. It sucks for those of us who work 9-5, especially because all the highschoolers get in and fill the place up, denying us entry. That's what happened to me last year, but this year I got in just fine, an hour late, without tickets. So, that was a good thing. This show is hailed as a reunion for Fork In Hand bands, but there are certain FIH bands I would have liked to see there that weren't, ie: The Allstonians and drexel mainly.
The Walthams, a band I can only imagine hails from Waltham, MA, were coming on just as I got in there, and Iwas very pleasantly suprised. They played mid-tempo melodic punk. The lead singer came out dressed as a guy in the shower. You gotta respect someone who can sing an entire set with a metal bar and shower curtains duct-taped to him. The guitar and bassist (maybe drummer, couldn't see) had skeleton suits on. It was ammusing, they done well, yes indeed. I was downing the rolling rocks by the bar at this point, so I'm not particularly particularly prepared to speak on the individual songs - I don't know them, but let's just say I'd like to, at some point.
Then, The Unseen. They play fast, hard, screamy punk rock. For some reason their entire set is a blur in my memory, so I won't say much, except to say that they played well. I was still downing beer at an incredibly fast rate trying to prepare myself for the next two bands, so that might be why I can't really recall their set. Anyway, I can't say much about them, except that they have a very distinct sound a whole hell of a lot of you would probably do very well checking out.
But then it was time for Kicked In The Head. Ahhh Kicked In The Head, how I love you so. Anyone remember when they played ska? Well, that is just not the case anymore. No horns, just guitar, bass, drums, vocals. They were escorted on stage decked out in straight jackets (undone, obviously, they needed their hands) by a group of nurses simmilar to the NoFX Nurse chick from Pump Up The Valuum. That was a treat. Every now and then they wandered out and gave the members of the bands some pills.. The contents of those pills weren't commented on, though, so for the time being we'll asume it was just, um, candy or morphine.
KITH is a real crowd pleaser, because they have an insanely high energy level that fuels the most stage diving anyone has ever seen at a Boston show (as the Big D singer would note). This show doubled as a CD Release party for the new EP. I knew that was coming because the street team, or maybe the band themselves, decorated the front of my apartment building with stickers. Coz, I'm from Allston, and so are most of them, at least at one time or another.
KITH Played mostly songs from their latest two releases, but also did us the special treat of playing a song from their first release (A classic) and my favorite kicked in the head song ever, Fix My Sink. I should note, as they did, that Fix My Sink is about living in an apartment in Allston and being frustrated and pissed off at the shitty landlords with insanely high prices and bad service. When I got home from that show, covered in other peoples sweat and drunk - all I wanted to do was take a shower and watch Leprechaun with my roommates - but I couldn't, because our hot water heater was broken. oh the irony.
They also played a bunch of covers - but I can't remember a single one of them. So... we'll move on, to Big D and the Kids Table.
Big D. This isn't the first time I've reviewed a Big D Show for this webpage, and it won't be the last. Seeing Big D is always a special treat, because the level of energy and chaos is always upped a notch. Following KITH, this made things just absolutely crazy, as they noted. They came out decked in suits with red face masks on. I'm not sure what this was a reference too - but anyway, it was a cool effect. Also, the lead singers roommates were at that show dressed up as Big D's, dancing on the stage and repeatedly diving into the crowd. Yup, they took a bunch of packing material (Which I imagine they purchased at Allstons very own Discount Foam and Rubber store, The most depressing place on earth.) and made themselves, Big Ds. Funny shit.
Big D played a good mix of songs from Good Luck and The Ginsy Hill EP. They also played a few songs from Shot By Lammi, I think What?! and Draw The Line. They played Those Kids Suck, Checklist, Figure It Out, That "slave in heaven, star in hell" song (it's name escapes me), Myself, L.A.X., 51 Gardner (Yet another song about living in Allston), and Wailing Paddle. Maybe some more songs. I'm not entirely sure.
It was a great show and they promise that they've got a new album coming out that they're recording 20 songs for. I don't think they played any of these songs, which is too bad because I'd love to hear them.
So there you have it - the 6th annual Nightmare before Halloween. My only complaints about this show would the fact that it was so damn early - and that usually the level of maturity at all ages shows is nil. After having a bunch of young girls ask me to buy them booze I escaped directly to the front of the stage, resulting in me getting a bath of bostoners sweat. I really hate it when people call me "Sir" at a punk show, I mean, I'm only 21.. but there you have it, I guess that red arm bracelet is a sign of maturity. Heh, so it goes.