Thursday, February 28, 2008

2night: 3 Inches of Blood!

To say I'm a 3 Inches of Blood fan is a bit of an understatement. I loved only certain metal bands in the '80s. I leaned more towards Metallica, Megadeth and Exodus rather than the more popular hair metal bands. That and crossover bands like DRI, the Accused, Verbal Abuse and Nuclear Assault. These days, sure I can laugh and rock out to a Motley Crue song, but that's just pop music to me. The best metal bands for me in the past few years have been Early Man, The Sword and 3 Inches of Blood. Bands that have insane guitar riffs straight from the '80s, harsher vocals, and bring a sense of irony and humor to their music do it for me. More rock, less fashion, and they don't take themselves as seriously as a lot of death metal bands. 3 Inches of Blood are the total package and they have two singers, one that does the high metal parts and one that does growlier hardcore parts, which works great. The band has had a few line-up changes in the past year (the screamer fucked up his voice during the Ozzfest tour and had to be replaced), but it sounds like they are just as awesome as ever. Want to hear them? Go here.

Last June the band released their second album, "Fire Up the Blades." The album rocks, but I still find myself going back to 2004's "Advance and Vanquish." I'm stoked to hear songs from both albums live tonight, when 3 Inches of Blood headline the opening live show at King Cobra in Seattle. The openers are no slouches either, local Plaster always put on a great rock show and also from Seattle, Book of Black Earth, promise to inject your veins with your week's black metal fix. This show is going to be brutally awesome.

Show details:
3 Inches of Blood
Book of Black Earth
Toxic Holocaust
$10, 21+, doors @ 8pm
King Cobra, 916 E. Pike Street

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Chow Nasty (tonight at Nectar in Fremont)

A self-described soul funk band from the East Bay, Chow Nasty brings the party with them. They rocked The Funhouse a few years back when I took this photo, and tonight they rock Nectar in Fremont with Velella Velella.

The Make Out Choir

Along the lines of The DTs from Bellingham, who I posted about earlier, as well as Seattle band Thee Emergency, was a hard soul band from a few years ago called The Make Out Choir. 2001-2003 seemed to be their hey day when they played a ton of great shows. The band featured people from a bunch of other bands, including Dave from New Fangs, with Lisa up front in I think her first band. They had a fun combination of rock and soul going on, with great female vocals up front. These photos are from a show at the Comet in late 2001 or early 2002.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

10 Things Northwest Punk Compilation Vol. 1

In 1997 I put out my first CD, a compilation of 33 Northwest punk bands. Copies were distributed for free with the first 1500 copies of 10 Things #16 (500 went to the bands). The project took about a year to put together. It started out as a plan to do a split 7" or flexi with two bands. My pal Chris Gual, who was working as a programmer at Microsoft, graciously volunteered to pay for it, hoping to release some friend's bands. The project blossomed into a full blown compilation and was way more work than I originally realized, but I think the result turned out great - we captured a moment with many of the punk and hardcore bands playing the Northwest in 1997, we got exposure for a bunch of local bands not only locally, but in tons of national fanzines when review copies went out, and listening to the CD after I loaded it to my server last night, I still think there's a bunch of great music on it. Today, eleven years later, I think only three of these bands are still in existence: Bristle, Lopez and Submission Hold.

Below are links to 320Kb MP3s of all the songs on the compilation. Yeah, they are a little big, but I figure I might as well just burn them once at high quality, you can downgrade 'em if you want to, to fit them on one CD, or pick and choose songs. Re-distribute at will! This compilation was free to begin with, it was done for entertainment purposes and to promote the punk bands of the Pacific Northwest:

1. Bristle "End of the Line"
2. The Fumes "Shot Out My Heart"
3. Larry "One for the Road"
4. Submission Hold "Predisposed to Oppose"
5. U.N. "Man's Preservation"
6. Whipped "Oasis of Shit"
7. Screwjack "Worst Laid Plans"
8. Neck-Tie "Nuclear Warfare"
9. Brainsick "Us and Them"
10. Stink "Not Me"
11. Haggis "Want it All"
12. Not My Son "Kim"
13. Whorehouse of Representatives "Censorship"
14. U.N.I. "No Problem Here"
15. Upsideout "Knots"
16. Loose Grip "Pucker up & Squat"
17. Poppa Wheelie "Jim"
18. Portrait of Poverty "Portrait of Poverty"
19. The A-Team "Burnout"
20. John Q. Fascist "Stand By Me"
21. Anguish "Constructing a Life/May 10th"
22. Cease and Desist "Pull the Trigger"
23. The Degenerats "Crash the Establishment"
24. The Sewer Company "Good Luck"
25. Blue Collar "Worldwide Anti-Clique"
26. Humpy "You're a Joke"
27. The Flies "Firebridge"
28. Sissies "Ward #8"
29. Intifada "Happy Clowns Dancing in Fields of Roses"
30. 90 Lb. Wuss "Cut Throat"
31. The Rickets "Half Dead"
32. Rubber "Arf"
33. Lopez "Andy's Cookies"

33 Northwest bands from Washington, Oregon, Idaho, British Columbia and Alaska, 2000 copies, released in 1997, cost around $300 to mix + $1600 for CDs. I bugged a bunch of bands for quite a while to submit music, finally it came together with most of the bands I wanted contributing. Brent Watanabe, a terrific artist who did a lot of early band posters for shows at Redmond's Old Firehouse and was my resident 10 Things artist, did one kick-ass drawing to be printed on the CDs. Scott at Hanzek Studios patiently walked me through the process of mixing the CD and trying to get a cohesive enough sound out of I'm sure the hardest punk music he'd ever dealt with and a wide variety of recording qualities and volumes.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Stella Pizza
(featuring the Triggers and Dark Places)

Stella Pizza opened in Georgetown in 2001 at 5513 Airport Way Blvd South. Georgetown, for those not in the know, is an industrial/warehouse district South of downtown Seattle that over the past 8 years has blossomed into a working class and artist community with a string of great small businesses, bars, clubs and restaurants. It's also home to tons of local artists, great BBQ, two bike clubs (The Cretins and Magic Wheels), a record store, a few cool coffee joints, and more.

Stella was an early adapter to Georgetown and helped lay the foundation for businesses to follow. By the Fall or Winter of 2001, Stella and the nearby Industrial Coffee were both hosting live music every weekend. The kind of live music I like--dirty, loud, sweaty rock'n'roll. Garage bands, punk bands, noise bands, rockabilly bands... much of the same kind of live music featured at Seattle clubs like Funhouse, the Sunset or the Comet today. Since diehard rock fans will go anywhere for their music, a bunch of us were trekking down to Georgetown in the cold in the Winter of 2001 for live shows. All the rock fans helped foster the need for more bars and services, along with the local population's need for development. Often I'd pay cover at both venues and go back and forth to watch bands. Joetta Velasquez was booking Stella and Brian Foss was booking Industrial Coffee, both would end up later booking Zak's downtown (which is now Funhouse), and both had similar taste in music. Today Stella has changed it's name to Stellar Pizza and hasn't hosted live music in five years... about the time Industrial Coffee also went out of business. But Jules Maes in Georgetown revamped and reopened a few years ago and proudly hosts live music all the time that draws people to the neighborhood from all over the Seattle area and neighboring towns.

These photos are of Stella Pizza in it's hey day of live music. The first two are of The Dark Places, the last one is of The Triggers:

The Epoxies... no more?

There's been gossip since December that Portland synth punk band The Epoxies were breaking up. In their website forum it's been confirmed that singer Roxy's recorded a solo album with Drat the Robot doing the guitars and bass. From Drat: "Looks like we got 12 songs. And they are pretty badass. It's gonna take a little time to mix, then I am sure she will put those versions up on her MySpace. The idea was we were gonna release them as-is out of our home studio, but now I think we are gonna record them with real drummer and in a proper studio." While the band has made no official announcement of the break up, I've heard it confirmed by a number of different people in Portland, enough to say it's gotta be the truth.

Boo! I loved The Epoxies... luckily I saw them live early on, I was one of the first people to interview the band back when we were publishing Tablet. They brought so much energy to their music and live show, something that's missing from a lot of bands today. I wish the ex-band members good luck, I'm sure they will pop up in other bands soon!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Raygun... Naked Raygun

True story: I met my good friend Charlie back around 1988 or 1989 because of Naked Raygun. We were both working at a library at the University of Washington and I had seen him around, he just looked like another goofy college kid. But one day he shows up to work in a Naked Raygun shirt and I was kinda floored. I went right up to him and said, "You like Naked Raygun? You like punk?" And so began a friendship that has lasted twenty years, bonding first on our fondness for punk and noise music, smoking pot, eating pizza, reading comics and MRR, and drinking beer. Charlie was way more of a Naked Raygun fan than I, I liked 'em alright, but he'd actually argue with me that their version of "Suspect Device" on 1988's Jettison LP was better than the original by Irish punkers Stiff Little Fingers from the '70s. That was sacrilege to me, Stiff Little Fingers were (and still are) one of my favorite bands. But regardless, hanging out with Charlie I listened to a lot of Naked Raygun.

We went and saw them live back around 1990, so when we heard they had reformed and were playing Seattle last November, we pretty much had to go. And Charlie's not the kind of guy you see dancing around in the pit at a show, yet there he was, nearly twenty years later, pogoing up front loving every minute of it. They put on a great show for a couple guys probably in their mid-'40s and pulled out most of their classic songs for a good-sized (but not capacity) crowd, that ate up every minute of it. Naked Raygun are one of those bands that genre-cross in a great way, side by side singing along were 40 year old geeky punk dudes with 18 year olds with spikes and mohawks. That's the way more shows should be. Most of my photos from the show ended up pretty blurry, save for these ones:

The Zack Static Sect

I've written the multitude of Zack Static's great bands before. His current band is The Zack Static Sect, featuring Zack on guitar and vocals, Father Alex on drums and Joe Foucalt on bass. The band plays catchy garage rock, you can hear a few songs over here. This photo is of the band playing live at the Monkey Pub probably four or five months ago.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

The Femurs

It's quite possible that Rob Femur is more known around Seattle for "Gabba Gabba Hey," his weekly punk radio show Saturday nights on The End, than he is for his band. My guess is there are about 100 times the people listening to Rob on the radio then come to his band's shows, based on the two I've seen. And this is a bummer, since The Femurs are a fun, fairly low-fi, pop punk/power pop band.

Maybe it's because they are acoustic. And a two-piece. Which upon first mention might turn off the rock and punk crowd, but both live and on their 2007 CD "Modern Mexico," the band rocks. If you wanna check them out, they have a few songs on MySpace, will be playing at Noc Noc February 29th, and will be live on KEXP's Audioasis show March 1st. Then they head out to SXSW and a West Coast tour.

This photo was from a show a few months ago at The Monkey Pub in Seattle's U-District.

The Hands

I've mentioned The Hands and their non-pretentious image and fun live show before. The band is on the verge of releasing their first album and testing their sound on a much wider audience. I'm pretty sure from the few recorded songs I've heard that they are indeed going to go over quite well. While a little less punk and more indie rock for my personal tastes, they have an energy in their sound that can't be denied. I've seen them I think four times live now and each time they were progressively better... and I thought they were good the first time! Their record release party is Friday, February 29th at Neumo's. You should go to this show not just to see and hear The Hands rock the joint, but the opening bands The Whore Moans and Earaches will fucking lay it down as well. You can hear a few songs and get more info about The Hands on their MySpace page.

These photos are from a show at The High Dive in Fremont from about eight months ago.

Sticker Guy 15th Anniversary Party!

More news from my friend Pete on the Sticker Guy anniversary party, including Seattle locals The Spits and Dave Yanul Hernandez from The Shin's old band Scared of Chaka. The Gain is reuniting as well and featured Zac from Zoinks/Screeching Weasel/Squirtgun. I remember when "Pete from Reno" decided to start his sticker business 15 years ago, I was one of his first customers!

We made our first sticker in March of 1993. So next month we'll be celebrating 15 years! We're going to have a big party in the Reno area, and everyone is invited!

March 28th, Washoe Club, Virginia City, NV
SCARED OF CHAKA (Yanul, Dameon, and Ron - first gig in about 10 years!)
THE SPITS (Michigan punk rock wizards)
THE BANANAS (Superfun sloppy Sacramento punkrock!)

March 29th, Reno NV (venue to be announced)
THE GAIN (Joey Steve Corky - first gig in about 10 years!)
THE TROUBLEMAKERS (Sacramento - also celebrating their 15th year anniv in March!)
THE RIPPERS (all the way from Italy - slick 60s punk!)

There will likely be an extra daytime party on Saturday, early afternoon in Virginia City with a couple of bands, TBA!

We expect this event to sell out, so get your tickets quick! It's cheap, just $10 per night. It's going to be a great party, and you can expect plenty of free stickers...
Go to for tickets and updates!

Thanks and we hope to see you in March!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I'm baaaack

A one week lag in articles sets a new sucktastic record for me, but I've been on vacation in the land of no rock and roll: The Woods. Well, except when you fill it with metal cranked loud as you drink whiskey and shoot guns.

There seems to be constant bickering over on the Stranger's music blog when they write about King Cobra. I'm not quite getting why... the club is cool and The Stranger isn't giving it crap beyond a first snarky comment from music editor Eric Grandy a few weeks ago. It's silly to keep ragging on Grandy. He isn't a big fan of punk, metal, hardcore and garage rock, but he's actually gone out of his way after a first lame comment to highlight what's going on at the new club. As well he should, it's already a popular place and a new club in The Stranger's hood.

Then there is a minor backlash against a club playing metal, punk and rock on Capitol Hill. Ha ha ha. I guess in recent years it's been an indie rock and alt pop haven, but damn if The Comet hasn't flown the rock flag proudly forever and clubs like The Breakroom and Moe's put heavy and loud bands on their stages throughout the '90s. I miss The Breakroom and think to some extent King Cobra fills the void it left many years ago.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Coming soon to a theater near you!

This week I plan to cover all three of these bands in depth with lots of photos and info because they've all kicked my ass live a bunch of times in the past couple years and have sadly all ended (I hope I'm getting that right with the Gloryholes since they all are in different bands now).

The Gloryholes live at the Monkey Pub:

The New Town Animals live at the Sunset Tavern:

The Stuck Ups live at the Sunset Tavern:

The Popular Shapes at the Sunset Tavern

I wrote all about The Popular Shapes and posted their discography here and also posted more photos in this post. I think this may be the final set of photos of shot of the band. I'm sure these are from the Sunset, I think maybe from the Rockfight day that Meghan put on (which ruled!). Enjoy:

Saturday, February 9, 2008

2Night in Seattle

I'm spinning records at King Cobra tonight in Seattle's Capitol Hill neighborhood (right next to The Comet). Stop by if you wanna hear some old '70s and '80s punk, garage rock, and a bunch of Seattle bands. My pal Tracie will be spinning too, probably all '80s metal. Also, check out the new club if you haven't yet, this place is very cool and will be a club you'll be going to a lot once the live music starts.

Saturday February 9th
King Cobra
916 E. Pike Street
DJs Dan 10 Things and Diamond Diabla
9pm 'til close

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Scared of Chaka Reunion!

Holy crap!

"Dave Hernandez, Ron Skrasek and Dameon Waggoner will indeed be reforming Scared of Chaka for one show only (so far!) for the first time in ten years.

When: Friday, March 28
Where: Virginia City, NV (half an hour drive from Reno)

All of this info comes directly from the band. Its really 100% actually happening. As reported earlier it will be for the 702 Records 15th anniversary. I will keep everyone posted as details surface."

Me thinks Pete the Sticker Guy made this happen. Awesome. I might seriously consider flying to Reno and going to this. Besides, it's always fun to go to Virginia City and visit the Bucket of Blood Saloon.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

The DTs

The DTs from Bellingham are Estrus Records head honcho Dave Crider's band. The band describes themselves as "hard soul" and that's a pretty spot on description, they mix R&B and soul with garage rock'n'roll, much like Seattle band Thee Emergency and Olympia band The Gossip. And The DTs are much older and experienced, Crider spent decade in The Mono Men honing his guitar skills. I've seen the band three times live and every time they were great. For more info and music, check out The DTs website. These photos are from a show in 2002 at The Comet.

Band members: Diana Young-Blanchard sings, Dave Crider rocks the guitar, Patti Belrummer plays keyboards and Phil Carter drums.

MP3s: Freedom

Last of the V8s

In the movie The Road Warrior, the tragic hero Mad Max drives a Ford Falcon XB GT coupe, also known as the last production V8 interceptor or the last of the V8s. Max drives the last of the big powerful gas guzzling muscle cars, balls to the wall with his pedal to the metal, in a world where gas has become the most precious commodity. The imagery is clear, the last of the V8s is a machine that's loud and fast and the man at the wheel is just hanging on the edge of sanity, half out of control, half fighting to survive.

Kansas City garage punk band The Last of the V8s began in 2001. The same year they released their first album "It's On" and toured the States. In 2002 on their next tour, I took these photos at a show they played at The Comet. Needless to say, they lived up to their name, they blasted out fast garage punk with a singer that was halfway to out of control. They broke up about six months later, but in late 2006 I got an email from the singer saying the band was reforming, and indeed it happened. And they came back with a song about zombies, "Dead By Dawn," so you know I was hooked in again. I fucking love zombies. If you wanna hear a few songs and get more info, check 'em out here.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The Seizures

The Seizures were a Bellingham, Washington band from the early 2000's. These shots are of the band playing live at Zak's (now Funhouse) in June or July of 2002. The band had out a demo, a split 7" with Lands Farther East on Masa Records, and a live cut on a Masa Records compilation.

Band members:
James on vocals and guitar, Brian on Guitar, Monkey on bass, and Dave on drums. Other band members included Jamie on drums, and Bruce and Joel Myrene on bass.

Music (recorded live 1/23/2003):
Brian, James and Joel all later did time in the band USS Horsewhip.

More Midnight Thunder Express

I wrote earlier about The Midnight Thunder Express and just stumbled upon some more photos of them live. This show was at The Comet July 27th, 2002. I love these two shots because you can see both the band and crowd rocking out, as well as Brian Coloff's great behind the back guitar playing action. It's funny with garage rock shows in Seattle, inevitably I usually know half the crowd. It's the same diehard motherfuckers up front at all the shows at Funhouse, the Comet, the Monkey, etc.

Monday, February 4, 2008

The Cute Lepers

I've written about The Cute Lepers before and surely will again, in the meantime here are a few pix I snapped of them before my camera battery died during their excellent set at The Comet Friday:

Slayer Motorcycle Helmets

From the what the fuck file:

Los Angeles, CA - Monday, February 4, 2008 -- Slayer, the Grammy-winning, undisputed kings of thrash/punk/metal, have joined forces with O'Neal USA, one of the leading manufacturers of motorcycle and BMX accessories, to produce a limited edition of Slayer helmets that feature the band's distinguished and celebrated artwork. The helmets will launch under the name of RockHard, and will be sold at all Cycle Gear locations and at finer motorcycle dealerships worldwide . In addition, each helmet will be certified and numbered with its own Certificate of Authenticity. Slayer's RockHard Helmets go on sale on Monday, February 25 and once they're gone, they are GONE...

...While musical trends have come and gone, the members of Slayer - Tom Araya/vocals, bass; Kerry King/guitars; Jeff Hanneman/guitars; Dave Lombardo/drums - have continued to stay true to their thrash roots and loudly defied the music industry's standards for the past 27 years. The band is nominated this year for its third Grammy Award (Best Metal Performance for the track "The Final Six" off of 2007 limited edition "Christ Illusion." On "Christ Illusion," Slayer takes on the Government and God, looking at the World Trade Center disaster from the terrorists' point of view and repeatedly committing lyrical blasphemy, which caused one major daily reviewer to hypothesize, "If Thomas Jefferson were alive today, he undoubtedly would be listening to Slayer. Beneath this aggressive veneer is a social, political and interpersonal message that would put proud smiles on our nation's founders."

Les Hormones

Les Hormones from San Francisco came to town Friday night along with The Pets, both bands were playing Seattle and the Slabtown Bender in Portland. Les Hormones' sound is very stripped down raw garage rock, reminiscent of bands like The Sonics and Wailers that were rocking the Northwest back in the '60s. While I'm all for the nostalgia factor of '60s garage rock, what I like about this band is they make it raunchier, dirtier and more fun in many ways. They definitely got the crowd into their show too as the rocked the joint. You can hear a few song here, and the band will have a 7" out pretty soon on Nasty Product.

The Pets

These photos are of The Pets rockin' the Comet Friday night. The Pets are from Oakland, Califorinia and feature an ex-Seattlite on guitar and vocals, Dan, formally of Flathead and Right On! Also in the band is Zack on bass, who used to be in the awesome FM Knives, and Jason on drums. The band plays catchy mid-tempo garage rock and has four 7"s out on a number of labels. To hear a few songs and get more info on The Pets, check out their MySpace page. They were great live!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

The Fucking Eagles/Studio 66 tonight!

The Dude: Jesus, man, could you change the channel?
Cab Driver: Fuck you man. If you don't like my fuckin' music get your own fuckin' cab!
The Dude: I had a rough...
Cab Driver: I pull over and kick your ass out!
The Dude: Come on, man. I had a rough night and I hate the fuckin' Eagles, man!

I love that scene in the Big Lebowski and when I heard a couple years ago a band from Tacoma named themselves The Fucking Eagles, I thought perhaps they had chosen the best band name EVAR! When the Showbox was hosting a Big Leboskifest last year, I pleaded with the booker via email that the band had to play, it would be a travesty not to include a band named after one of the best lines in the movie. Thankfully, it happened.

Rather than bore you with another one of my band descriptions that overuses the words awesome, fantastic and sweet, I'm gonna share with you a review one of my ex-Tablet writers, Emily Youssef (who rules by the way), wrote about the band Spin:

"Though their name possibly stems from a hate-filled music review in The Big Lebowski, these Tacoma, Washington rockers are anything but slackers. After stints in other groups, John Owen Atkins (vocals/guitar), Stu Linkert (drums), Jesse Ray (guitar/vocals) and Dutch Kelly (bass) banded together in 2005. Their studio full-length debut, A Million Dollars Worth of Music, produced by Johnny Sangster (Mudhoney, The Posies, Murder City Devils), was issued via local label Gaptooth Jukebox earlier this year. The Fucking Eagles are bad boys with hearts of gold, flip-flopping between rowdy and righteous. Often compared to the now-defunct Oblivians, the raucous quartet is a distinct breed, employing strutting lyrical antics and infectious, lo-fi guitar chords. Album opener "Baby I'm Coming Home" promises loyalty with unwavering drumming and classic Little Richard-like howling to solidify singer Atkins' case. The instant foot-stomper "He Won't Love You Like I'll Leave You" includes a ballsy anthemic hook not suitable for print while "Out of This World" returns to the wholesome side with a 1960s surf guitar riff and catchy punk rock sing-along vocals. 4 out of 5 stars."

Check out a few of their songs on their MySpace profile, 'cause I think they rock. Tonight if you're in Seattle and looking for something kinda unique and fun to do, the Fucking Eagles are gonna rock Studio 66, Chris Porter and Heather's rockin' monthly garage rock/mod night. If you've never been to Studio 66, think of one of those goofy '60s movies with surfers at a party with mod haircuts dancing on all the furniture crossed with today's garage rock scene. The couple I've gone to have had DJ's spinning '60s garage, weird lights and videos projected on the wall, dancers in plastic dresses and Go-Go boots, and a couple fun garage bands playing live. It's pretty damn cool, more like a party than a show, and it's held at a pretty unique space, the Lo_Fi on Eastlake (about halfway between Cafe Venus and the old Lobo). Here's the scoop on tonight's show:

Also featuring Guest DJ - DJ GORT
Along with Resident DJ’s DJ CHRISPO & DJ VODKA TWIST
Plus Go Go Dancing by TANGERINE TONIC
Projections by porchlightstar
$7 cover
21 + admitted
Lo-Fi Performance Gallery (429 Eastlake Ave E)

Friday, February 1, 2008

Hey Seattle, tonight you should go to The Comet and King Cobra!

If you've noticed a lot of touring garage punk bands are playing Seattle this weekend, it's because of the Slabtown Bender down in Portland. A bunch of the bands playing this garage rock festival booked West Coast tours and are playing places like Funhouse and The Comet, as well as Portland. Tonight I totally gotta put my money behind the show at The Comet. Not only are locals The Cute Lepers playing, an awesome band featuring members of The Briefs and The Girls, but also two California bands you don't wanna miss. The Pets from Oakland play fun garage rock and feature ex-Seattlite Dan Wood (who played in Right On and Flathead) and Zack from the awesome FM Knives. And Les Hormones from San Francisco play great stripped down garage punk. The only bummer on the whole Comet show is I stopped by there earlier this week and noticed they no longer have three pinball games upstairs. Boo! Even though those games were poorly maintained, I still used to play 'em about every time I went there.

Two doors down from The Comet is the newly opened King Cobra. I'm digging on this place. Its halfway transition from neon lit LA/IKEA style dance club to rock'n'roll club gives it sort of a Vegas strip club feel... with punk rock and '80s metal playing. Fantastic! Tonight the cats from The Emergency and Bobcat will be DJing, AND THEY HAVE PINBALL (Funhouse and Monster Bash, both great games). So it's a great spot to go for a drink between bands from the Comet show or party after the show. I'm happy to report they pour a pretty stiff drink too.

Ursula and the Androids (and Pho Bang and Jackie Hell)

In 2000, two Seattle punkish drag queens, Ursula Android (in real life Marcus Wilson) and Jackie Hell (in real life David Latimer) launched a night called Pho Bang at Foxes bar in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, right across the street from Fallout Records. While Foxes was a gay dive bar, the night Ursula and Jackie put together appealed beyond the gay community to low-life punks and rock'n'rollers like me and my friends. The night usually featured one or two guest punk bands, incredibly offensive skits and commentary by the two drag queens, singing or drag performances by Jacki and Ursula, guest drag performers like the fabulous Sylvia O' Stayformore, a drag queen contest and dancing, usually to the punk and new wave tunes of DJ Baby J. The night was always fairly crazy... I think every time I went I drank too much, stayed out too late, got hit on by old men, and had a number of bizarre experiences. One thing was guaranteed at Pho Bang, you'd have a blast and laugh a lot! At times Pho Bang seemed really sloppily slapped together, at others it seemed well-planned and packed with a hell of a lot of entertainment and performances for $5. For regular attendees of Pho Bang at Foxes, you could follow the somewhat sorted soap opera of Jackie and Ursula's lives through their skits, which included multiple husbands, murder, babies, abortions and more. Good times! Jackie and Ursula graciously hosted our Tablet holiday party one year and their skits completely offended a fairly conservative couple I'm friends with to the point they left. Maybe it the strangling of a baby with a phone cord? Or Jackie chasing Ursula around with a big kitchen knife trying to stab her? Regardless, the fact that they could offend these people into leaving was pretty fucking awesome.

After Foxes closed, the punk drag queen duo hosted the night less often at other bars, including Sit and Spin, the Re-bar, the Hideaway and Nuemo's, usually under and altered name like "Faux Bang." I'm pretty sure the final one was with The Gossip at Neumo's. That night was huge, packed with hundreds of young Capitol Hill hipsters that had never got to witness the show when it was smaller, rawer and in an old gay dive bar. That night didn't have the same feel at all, although the bands rocked it, too many in the audience were laughing at the drag queen performances, rather than with them. Pho Bang was at it's best in a more intimate setting with an almost anything could happen feel in the air, it felt like you had stepped into an old John Waters movie, and maybe if you looked over in the corner there would be the egg lady in the crib yelling at you.

Both Jackie and Ursula developed a few regular songs they'd perform with help of a back up band, which usually included Ross from The Cripples playing synths. This photo is from a Faux Bang show at the Hideaway in January 2002 (I think) of Ursula and the Androids performing on stage. Dirtnap Records put out a split single the same year with Jackie and the Control Tops on one side and Ursula and the Androids on the other, both doing their popular songs from Pho Bang. Ursula did "Babies" and "Foxy Roxy" and Jackie did "Tonight, I Kill" and "Expensive." They also appeared on the 2003 Screamers cover compilation "The Necessary Effect" put out by Extravertigo Records.

I've got a bunch of Pho Bang photos from Foxes to scan in, I'll be putting them up over the next month, including some awesome ones of The Valentine Killers dressed as Turbonegro.

More Epoxies photos!

These Epoxies photos were from a Pho Bang show at The Hideaway (Dave Eck's club that operated for about two years in the old Sit'n'Spin space) in January of 2002: