At my parents' house again, for a long break, at least 12 hours away from anyone I know. Days spent drinking High Life, fishing, and doing my best not to fall out of boats, lest I lose my shoes again. I thumb through the paper one morning, looking at the BANDS PLAYING LIVE section, expecting to see more George Strait, Pussycat Dolls, etc. You know, crap.
VOODOO GLOW SKULLS/AGAINST ALL AUTHORITY/TIME AGAIN. It screams up from the paper. Finally, I have something to do!
I get to the bar around 6, because the paper said the show starts at 7. No, one bartender says it's 7:30. Another says its 8:15. No matter -- $2 16 oz. cans of Lone Star will do little to dampen my spirit. And the marvelous jukebox, full of Black Flag, Fugazi, Minutemen, and other grand punk bands, eagerly swallows up the crumpled dollar bills I feed into it. I even get to sit and talk with VGS bassist Jorge Casillas for a bit...no free swag, alas.
Finally, after 2 hours of fairly steady drinking, I pay my $16, and wander through a door at the side of the bar into a whole 'nother room. This is the stage area. It is fairly decent sized, enough to seem cavernous with only 30-35 people there to see the opening band, locals Drastic Actions. Who the hell knew there was a punk scene in Corpus Christi? But I digress. Drastic Actions are a fairly typical punk band, nothing special, clearly schooled in Black Flag and other early hardcore bands. I don't remember much about their set, except for them covering Poison's "Talk Dirty To Me," which Jughead's Revenge did a much better job on. All that aside, they sound as innovative as Mr Bungle when compared to...
Time Again. Goddamnit, I hate Time Again. My friend once described them as, "the byproduct of Rancid taking a shit." After seeing them live, I would have to amend that to, "the byproduct of Rancid eating 35 Grande meals at Taco Bell and blowing up a Port-A-Potty." The singer is the very definition of Hot Topic heroin chic. Nice mohawk, dude. Is that a Rancid hoodie you've got on? Oh, and you're stripping it off to reveal a Casualties t-shirt with cut sleeves? And this first song is called... Oh, who gives a fuck? This is bad. I've seen some horrible local bands in my life. I've played shows with Christian screamo bands. I saw AFI at the last Warped tour I went to. And I would rather be any of those places than watching this insipid, caricature `77-style garbage. Just remembering it makes my stomach clench. I went to the bar and had 3 shots of Johnnie Walker in a row in an effort to end the pain. No such luck. If I'd only known...I would've brought a box of rancid tomatoes.
Mercifully, Time Again quit playing. Maybe their guitarist broke a nail, I'm not sure. And it doesn't matter. Because next up, is Against All Authority. I could hardly contain my excitement as they began to set up. This is the band I came to see, the one I felt should've been headlining, but, hey, that just means I have to wait less time to see them. I have no idea what the set list was, because I was too busy having a good time to bother to write anything down. They started out with "All Fall Down," and the crowd went into a frenzy. Bassist/vocalist Danny Lore is just as snotty live as he is on the albums, and actually, I could hear his vocals a bit better live than on the Hopeless recordings. During the set, my beer got warm, and crushed in my hand. Guess I was a bit too enthralled, or maybe the scotch fucked up my motor skills. Who cares, it's a punk(/ska) show, right? No one is reading this review at this point anyways. They closed out the show with a cover of "Holiday in Cambodia," replacing the Pol Pot reference with "George. Bush." Expected? Probably. Overdone? Perhaps. Rousing good fun? You bet.
Next up, the headliners...the Voodoo Glow Skulls -- to be honest, a band I had forgotten was in existence. I admit to rocking out heavily to "Band Geek Mafia" during high school, but apart from various other songs that've appeared on compilations, that's all I know. So, I can't tell you what songs they started out with, or really, what songs they played at all, aside from "Delinquent Song."
However, I can tell you that the horns (sax and trombone) were crisp and clear, and the horned lucha mask worn by lead singer Frank Casillas shone under the lights. I can also tell you that ten 16 oz. cans of Lone Star have a way of eroding the memory. They played well, I enjoyed it. Sorry for tapering off here, but my memory is quite shot.
I got lost on the way home. But, you know, I preferred driving around on empty Texas highways, somewhat drunk, not knowing what the fuck was going on, to seeing Time Again.