Then we went to the venue, and did a bunch more reminiscing. That is what you call it when you go to see a band whose last studio album came out in 1990, right? We were the first group of fans into the venue and so we got our pick of places to hang out. We chose (wisely) to sit at the rail surrounding the main floor. (similar to the 7th St. Entry, for those who know what that is like.) The upshot of sitting is that you get to sit. The downside to sitting is that it adds to the whole feeling of... well, I'll figure out the feeling as I go.
We sat patiently through the first two bands (Shot Baker, Methadones) and finally after a brief introduction by some guy from Extreme Noise Records (who were celebrating thier 13th year in existence, so they are allowed to be snotty now) Naked Raygun took the stage. Although I was stone sober, I cannot remember what song they opened with, and I will now list the songs they played, as I remember, in no particular order. (Any help with this will be appreciated, Mojo, caveman, rampion)
Surf Combat (Jeff's mike died halfway through!!)
Dog At Large
Knock Me Down
New Dreams (Closed the set)
Which Side You're On
All songs were played very well, Pierre's bass was crisp, deep and resounding, Bill's guitar playing was SPOT ON, Eric's drumming was on time and poweful, and Jeff's voice has lost nothing to the passage of time. This is not to say they are not showing thier age, these are no longer twenty-something kids getting kicks. They are fully fledged middle aged men, with all the scars and warts that come with age. Pierre looked like he might fall asleep the first 2 songs or so, but then the Red Bull started kicking in and he got some wings. As for me, I too was showing my age. My ass stayed firmly in the chair the whole show, well, it rose slightly near the end as I sang along mightily to Rat Patrol.
But mostly I just sat there listening, watching and thinking. I often gazed longingly at the pit, where people in their late 30's and 40's tried to relive thier past pit glory. I thought about joining them, but then my knees would pang, and I would be reminded of the last NR show I went to, where I left with life-long knee damage due to my only bad pit experience ever. That, and there was a mohican out there who insisted on crowd surfing even though he was too big, and the crowd was too loosely packed. I kept imagining getting booted in the head, and having to kick his dumb haircutted ass. I hate crowd surfers, alway have, always will. I have damaged a good many of them in my day, and did not want to miss a minute of NR because of it. I also remember an Arcwelder/Shellac show I went to a few years ago that I got so wild in the pit that I nearly caused severe and permanent damage to my neck. I want none of that.
So I sat. And Listened. And Watched. And I enjoyed. I sang along with all of the "singalongsongs", doing my part to make the song happen. They only played 3 songs I did not know, and one of them was not even a NR song, so I did not feel bad.
It was a great show, and I would like to thank Naked Raygun for coming out to play, and I hope they come again.