I Smell Like A Bar

Oh yeah, I don’t like my second adopted hometown, after Stillwater and my real hometown of Fort Dodge. Okay, it’s not like I actively dislike Saint Paul, but I don’t miss it at all. I think that what I miss is what I came to Minnesota for: a big, drafty house with a thousand crazy friends crashing on the couch. So Minneapolis passed the smoking ban right about the time that

I woke up from my life like it was all just a bad dream.

Thanks, Firewater, but you’re getting ahead of me. I’ve seen a handful of shows this summer, but they have all been in Mpls., so thusly, no smoking. I’ve been out to the bars, too, but again, no smoking. I even went to New York, where I spent about 1/3 of my time (or more) stunt drinking in bars. Still, no smoking.

Mother fucking nasty. Why did I ever smoke a pack a day? What possessed me to pick up a cigarette, put it in my mouth, and make out with it like it was the last girlfriend that I would have for four years? Saint Paul needs to clear the smoking out of bars so my lungs can stay pink and beautiful.

STNNNG was just as I expected: loud, fast, and intricate, with a splash of crazed, out of control insanity over the top. The real shocker was Gay Beast, who ripped the air to shreds with their power trio of keyboard, guitar, and drums. Did I say drums without capitalizing it? DRUMS! WOW! I think on the second song the drummer (Angela? Shit, I’m terrible with names, but you know that) took a few seconds to sync up with the keys, but every other impact of her drumsticks and beater left a ringing impression on the rock center of my brain. The whole effect was as if robots had been programmed to rock, but got a virus, broke free of their masters, and decided to produce pure chaos through a mathematical formula. Two for the pink, one for rocking my ass!

After that was Lone Wolf, who basically turned his amp up to eleven and then gestured to the sound guy to bring up the house PA. It was a bit like the beginning of Back to the Future where Marty turns all the knobs up, strikes one chord and blows himself straight across the room and into the wall, except that this dude had pounded giant nails through his feet into the floor. He looked a lot like Glenn Danzig in Aqua Teen Hunger Force.

Danzig: Can we get the blood to flow up the walls?
Cybernetic Ghost: I dont see why not.

The part of seeing a local band in a dive bar that I love is that I was able to accost the singer from STNNNNNNNNNNNNG and tell him how much the band rocked. Later, during the next three hour break between bands, the drummer from Gay Beast sidled up to the bar next to me and I accosted her too. Then, after I ran out of small talk I got a chance to start fresh since the keyboardist (Danimal) and guitarist (Isaac) slid in next to me seeking liquid refreshment. The whole band wanted to know my name, even though I’m just a random dude in a bar telling them that I wasn’t sure what to expect before having my pants rocked to my knees while I stood there with my mouth agape.

I don’t know if I could recommend anything that I saw to anyone else unless they are big fans of crazy. I sure am, so yeah, I had an awesome time, but I left early because the smoke was making my head spin. Also, I’m old.

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