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Henry Rollins

Henry Rollins: live in Los Angeleslive in Los Angeles (2005)
Henry Rollins

Reviewer Rating: 5


Contributed by: BrandonSideleauBrandonSideleau
(others by this writer | submit your own)

It's been more than 2 years since Henry Rollins last did a show in LA, and even more so since he'd last done a spoken word show here. So, needless to say, I had been looking forward to this for some time. The show was to take place at a small guitar shop called McCabes in Santa Monica at both 8 PM a.


It's been more than 2 years since Henry Rollins last did a show in LA, and even more so since he'd last done a spoken word show here. So, needless to say, I had been looking forward to this for some time. The show was to take place at a small guitar shop called McCabes in Santa Monica at both 8 PM and 10 PM, both Friday and Saturday nights. If the name sounds familiar, it's because it is, as Henry recorded a spoken word album way back in 1992 at McCabes, and to the best of my knowledge this would be his first time back there since.

To start things off, I arrived at the strangely quiet streets of Santa Monica at about 5:30 PM, determined to get a good seat. After a couple hours of waiting, a small line gathered and soon we were let inside; I had tickets for both shows so I came early to solidify my seating. We were motioned through the store to a back room area, no bigger than someone's garage, which was the "theatre." I immediately thought "fuck yeah," as I got a seat about 4 inches from the small stage, not thinking about how strained my neck would be after 5 hours.

Anyway, after a very short waiting period, Henry came bolting down the stairs like a hyperactive child and went into one of the best shows I have ever seen. His enthusiasm was apparent and he seemed to be in a good mood; I knew it was going to be a great night. In no particular order, I will describe the evening's stories and political rants.

Henry had recently returned from a 7-day train ride across the entire Northern portion of Russia, and he had some new stories to tell, along with some old ones. His description of an overzealous, grouchy old cleaning woman on the train was priceless. She would walk into his room at all hours of the night and start cleaning and yelling in Russian. Due to the language barrier, a humorous chat between her and Henry about the train's meals began, with her using animal sounds and hand motions to describe the different options. Henry, of course, responded with similar animal sounds and motions before finally motioning for the fish after dismissing beef and poultry. Other memorable tales include Henry's acount of a Persian cab driver named Ijaz who got Henry's number (and never called) and some very well-informed conservative bashing. Henry seems not only to have a serious hatred for George W. Bush, but for Fox News anchor Sean Hannity and Bill O'Reilly as well, which was great.

The two shows lasted a total of 5 hours combined, with a few repeats, but I should've expected that for going to back-to-back shows. I left feeling that Henry is at his spoken word peak right now, utilizing both valid information and hilarious observations, and he's still as angry as ever. Here's to hoping he's still got some new music up his sleeve.

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (May 7, 2005)

We all loved Damaged, now do it again or shutup.

Anonymous (May 6, 2005)

"how is showing up for 2 minutes in a movie being a "star"??"

well, when the movie came out, on his website he referred to himself as starring in Bad Boys 2. how's that for starters bitch?

lushj (May 5, 2005)

Speaking of acting, his role as a showoff cop in "The Chase" was pretty great- though you had to know who he was to really enjoy his role (you know, "Police Story" and all that). Plus at one point the bars tattooed on the back of his neck are visible when his uniform's collar slips down for a second...

This score's for the ridiculousness of Charlie Sheen and "The Chase"!!!

Anonymous (May 5, 2005)

how is showing up for 2 minutes in a movie being a "star"?? Not to mention he bags on Bad Boys 2 and his "acting" every chance he gets. He once said that acting for him is purely a money thing and that he enjoys fucking with hollywood types.

Anonymous (May 5, 2005)

i like Rollins and all, but considering he was one of the stars of Bad Boys 2, maybe he should keep his opinions to himself.

BrandonSideleau (May 5, 2005)

The only films he's bashed on the show, thus far, have been Terminator 3, AVP and Cellular......I don't think anyone would even ATTEMPT to call those films worthy of somebodies time. The rest of the time he's talking about great indie stuff with interesting people in the industry, along with "average joe" type people.

Anonymous (May 5, 2005)

Henry Rollins is an amazing speaker and those who question this review's relevance to this site need to go back to their Marilyn Manson records or whatever.

lushj (May 5, 2005)

Rollins is one of the funniest, most natural speakers I've seen. Honestly, his tough guy chapbooks are one thing, but his live spoken show is well-paced and always entertaining. The last time I saw him he had this bit about puke on the Reeperbahn (sp?) in Hamburg- he really nailed the "drunk feeling like he's about to puke" situation, even though he's sober. Score's for the review and the Rollins spoken stuff.

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

to be honest I haven't seen the show, all I saw was the trailer where he was talking about not being able to find a plot in the film. after seeing that i was turned off.
I did love his radio show on 103fm., but i think he's best suited to telling stories about the road, etc. i find film reviews and political commentary/humor is being done in so many places, he should just stick to what he knows best, it's what kept him fresh all these years.

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

"i find henry;s film corner to be a bit hypocritical. He hates music critics and then gets a show as a critic himself"

i take it you haven't seen his show. Its not a critic show, its a film lovers show. He has people on you actually want to see talk about movies, not hype the next thing on the assembly line.

Its not about being a critic, as being a place where actual conversation about film has a place to breathe without being beaten over and over again on the head with a huge promotional shovel.

wyzo

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

What have i got
i've got everything

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

"Or maybe have Ian and Henry together? Maybe Ian's mom could drop them off..."

Maybe you were trying to make a joke (I'm guessing you're not due to your sincere 'tone'), but I believe Ian's mom passed away last year or something.

-BSD

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

score is for the guy who passed wind

BrandonSideleau (May 4, 2005)

This "iheartadam" guy or girl obviously has some serious personal issues. Just because somebody disagrees with you doesn't make them stupid, and in a case like this, it may be quite the opposite. I'd be curious to hear who and what this kid likes, because it's probably total shit.

iheartadam (May 4, 2005)

"One of the most inspiring performances I'd ever seen."

Burntorangepeel, for the sake of mankind, please blow the back of your head off.

Seriously, you guys scare the shit out of me when I think of how your brains work.

dazed (May 4, 2005)

I would actually be interested in seeing Henry Rollins someday, as opposed to more than half of the shows reviewed on this site. I thought it was a good review.

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

why is everybody complaining about this getting reviewed? would you prefer more static lullaby and emanuel reviews?

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

i find henry;s film corner to be a bit hypocritical. He hates music critics and then gets a show as a critic himself? I wonder how he would feel if film critics were given air time to review his albums.

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

3-3.5 hours? for chrisssakes.
-TOBB

BrandonSideleau (May 4, 2005)

On his DVDs and CDs the shows are almost always cut back from full length. The average Hank show is 3 to 3.5 hours long.

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

always a good time, i wish he would release or record his ames iowa shows, compared to what ive heard on dvd and CD, he usually extends his bits, and goes much longer when he comes here. Seen him twice, or maybe 3, geez, 3 times over the last 6 or so years.

Haven't gotten a chance to see his film corner show, but ive been trying to. Heard some good reviews of that. For fans, he is in a short mock documentary called "deathdealer" which comes out this month courtesy of filmmovement.com.

Grant

Anonymous (May 4, 2005)

hey punknews.org, i just farted.

will you write a review on that too?

burntorangepeel (May 4, 2005)

I saw him speak 2 years ago or so at MTSU in Murfreesboro, TN. One of the most inspiring performances I'd ever seen. He hung out for a while afterwards and was a very friendly, approachable guy.

A few month earlier, Ian McKaye spoke at MTSU as well, but it wasn't well-publicized and I didn't hear about it until it was too late. Now that would have been an inspiring speech...

Or maybe have Ian and Henry together? Maybe Ian's mom could drop them off...

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

Henry's not a scary person.....I've met him 5 times and chatted with him, he doesn't have patience for bullshit but he's not some old grouch. He's not some hulking mass either, just a fit average sized guy. People need to lay off on the "myths" of punk, sure he can lift alot, but he's not some meathead. The guy knows his stuff.

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

"every fan of diy or independent music needs to read "get in the van". all these bands out now creating paypal accounts cuz your dumbass let your shit get stolen or bitching about the pain of being on the road. fuck off. suck it up you pussies. black flag went through it all, never asked for a single handout and turned out to be one of the toughest, most persistent, "i dont give a fuck" and influential bands ever. rollins is a genius and he will also knock your teeth down your throat."

I couldn't agree more. I might be a bit frightened of the man in person though after reading his books... with good reason.

gladimnotemo (May 3, 2005)

"Henry's Film Corner" is genius.

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

every fan of diy or independent music needs to read "get in the van". all these bands out now creating paypal accounts cuz your dumbass let your shit get stolen or bitching about the pain of being on the road. fuck off. suck it up you pussies. black flag went through it all, never asked for a single handout and turned out to be one of the toughest, most persistent, "i dont give a fuck" and influential bands ever. rollins is a genius and he will also knock your teeth down your throat.

iheartadam (May 3, 2005)

"is very well-read, and an excellent orator and public figure."

Dear bencarter, pick up a gun and start chewing lead. Thank you.

iheartadam (May 3, 2005)

Oooh, what year is this now? I'm sorry I get confused, Rollins changes the profile of his gaped asshole so much every year I forget he's just a talentless whore who could anally consume a pickup truck.

I can't wait until he tries his hand (and fails) at comedy, then serious discussion, then acting, then hosting a tv show, then comedy again, then.....man. I'm amazed he still has fans. Go go gadjit marketing.

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

Henry Rollins for President.

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

i don't think i'd want to sit directing in front of him at a small venue like that. i saw him last year in ann arbor and was front row dead center. all i could do was marvel at how he doesn't drink water and watching the spit fly out of his mouth, all the while being thankful for the space between our seats and the stage. it was some disturbingly thick, white foamy spit.

sprainedsoul (May 3, 2005)

Love him or hate him, Rollins always puts 100% into what he's doing. I'm looking forward to new music from the Rollins band, he mentioned recently in an interview he was going to be working with Chris Haskett.

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

"I'm glad to see this site is not compromising itself"

I was amazed that you didn't put that in the Ben folds review, but then I checked and it's the first comment.

3

Anonymous (May 3, 2005)

"I left feeling that Henry is at his spoken word peak right now..."

BrandonSideleau (May 3, 2005)

We need to get a Rollins ID tag for news.....it's simple, just use the "sun search & destroy" logo. I don't think Henry would dig his news being labeled under "Black Flag news", as great as Black Flag is.

bencarter (May 3, 2005)

Hey, jackass, Henry Rollins is one of the most influential figures in the history of punk rock, has led an interesting life, is very well-read, and an excellent orator and public figure. Anything Henry Rollins does is worthy of being covered on this site.

ubershep (May 3, 2005)

-envy-

anarchaeologist (May 3, 2005)

I'm glad to see this site is not compromising itself

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