Do you remember how cold it was Sunday night? It was freezing. But I was going to a show. Which meant I had to strategically layer up. Coat check at the House of Blues doesn’t come cheap and they don’t let you stack items on one hanger. It was also a Sunday night show with 6pm doors. I was pretty nervous it would be one of those shows that starts before everyone arrives and ends nice and early to get the club crowd in. So there I was standing in the freezing cold, not wearing quite enough winter gear, waiting in line to get into the venue at 5:45. By the time I got into the show, I was less than thrilled to be there.
Dan Potthast (Mu330, Dan P and the Bricks, The Stitch Up) was the perfect opener. It was just him on his guitar playing 1 to 2-minute ska/punk tunes. They were catchy, they were clever, and he had the audience. Which is to say he heckled the audience way better than they heckled him. I wish I caught video of that. Particularly he had a great tune I’m not super fluent in his material, but I clearly recognized KKK Highway.
He told the audience that he wrote a tune for each night of the tour. I was able to catch his Boston tune on my phone:
And like that, January is halfway over and I’ve been slacking! I’ve got a stack of stuff I’ve been meaning to blog about. Here’s the lite version:
Brunt of It plays at the Middle East Upstairs on February 22 with The Blue Bloods, Dead Friends, A Common Goal, and Penalty Kill. Tickets are 18 and the show is 18+. Brunt of It most recently released All Aboard the Cannabus this past December, available on Bandcamp. See more shows at the calendar.
Seminal ska/punk act Fishbone visits Boston this March, performing at new-ish venue The Sinclair. The Sinclair opened a few months ago in Harvard square, fits 500 for shows and 100 for dinner, and is the latest in Bowery Presents owned venues. But it looks like Fishbone will be the first reason I have to visit this spot. It’s been a couple years but I’m stoked to see them again!
Saturday, March 3, 2013, 8pm
The Sinclair, 52 Church St, Cambridge, MA (Red Line to Harvard Square, I imagine)
$16, 18+, Tickets
Pressure Cooker’s recent release, “Wherever You Go,” got a great review from the Boston Globe. “It’s hard to say which wave of reggae and ska we are currently on, but whichever one it is, Pressure Cooker is riding it very well.”Read the review. Buy the record.
Rochester’s Mrs. Skannotto has (have? I never know) been added to The Toasters’ show at TT The Bear’s on Friday, March 1st. Tix/info here.
Yesterday, A Guy Named Guy released their Terminals Split with D-Cent Jerks from Puerto Rico. The D-Cent Jerks tracks swing a little pop/punk while the AGNG tracks swing a bit more post-punk. Give it a listen. (and then buy it if you dig it! It’s only $2!)
I’m happy to think about January because I’m entirely too stressed about December. Reel Big Fish and Pilfers return to Boston on January 27 with support from Dan Potthast of Mu330. Anyone who was at Skalapalooza this past October knows that Pilfers is generally a show-stealer. Hopefully they’ll have a longer set this round and possibly play a new tune or two like they a did a few reunions ago… But I should mention Reel Big Fish continues to put on a totally fun show. I’ve seen them a few times (even in a post-Scott world). The new sax player is great and if anything gives them a more “Turn the Radio Off” era horn section and I’m a huge fan of the new record, “Candy-Coated Fury.” Naturally, we all expect some Reel Big Fish/Pilfers on-stage mash-up. (Actually, on the Skalapalooza tour, Nick from Pilfers played keys for Spring Heeled Jack. Maybe he could sit in on a few RBF tunes. HINT HINT.)
I’ve never seen Mu330, but I’ve seen The Stitch Up, Dan P’s pop/punk act and the song-writing is totally the same. The most recent thing he’s done is Dan P and the Bricks which has a new wave/early toasters thing going on. I’m curious to see what he brings to this show.
Maybe it’s the seasonal good cheer or maybe it’s all the college students home on winter break, but there are more ska shows this December than there have been since I move to Boston in July.
New to the list:
12/14/12 – Home for the Skalidays: Allston – A Guy Named Guy, Short Handed Goal, Llama Tsunami, FORT! The Band, Mr. Furious – The Audio Jungle – All Ages, $5 or a Toy Donation – Facebook Event
Am I too old for this one? I have no idea [yet] what the house show scene is like. For all I know I might get shit for publicizing this show. Either way it doesn’t matter because I don’t have a clue where the Audio Jungle is. Give me a few weeks and I’ll figure it out. What you don’t know you don’t know. This is night one of a two night thing and part two is in Providence the next night. Love to Llama Tsunami from CT who are a total party.
12/21/12 – A Guy Named Guy, Poor Jeremy, The Mahlors – All Asia – 18+, 6pm
12/29/12 – Patent Pending, Survay Says, The Motions, Yellow Team – Middle East Upstairs – All Ages, $10 adv, $12 doors – Tickets – Facebook Event
Okay so really Survay Says is the only ska band on this bill but I adore those guys. My NYC ska/punk band played with them once or twice. Also, in the mid-2000s, Patent Pending used to play great CT Ska shows and I’m a sucker for good pop/punk. I’m a big fan of their most recent record, Second Family (the video for Douchebag is hilarious). I’m going to try to go even though I have to be at the House of Blues an hour later to see Bosstones.
Here’s the video for “Gas Money Millionaires” by Survay Says:
This is actually what I would classify as “too many ska shows.” I’ve seen this before. People are only gonna go to so many shows and then promoters complain ska shows don’t draw. Here’s to hoping this won’t be the case…