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Monday, March 31, 2008

We’re Having Much More Fun

posted by on March 31 at 11:48 AM

blur courtesy of X-fan evil robot 6 from the stranger flickr pool

Word up, Ari. X has still got it, and they flaunted it. John Doe is some kind of vest-less punk Han Solo. Exene was belting it out, feeling it- she was even sort of dancing(I thought she half-did a Harlem Shake up there). DJ Bonebrake was badass as anybody named DJ Bonebrake has any right to be.The constantly-cheesing Billy Zoom looks kind of like a cross between Conan O’Brien and the dad from Gidget. “Nice Guy- Punk Legend” Billy’s t-shirts at the booth said. That mufucka had crazy eyes. He kind of creeped my girl out but his solos were perfect everytime.

“I know Seattle is a concerned-citizen kind of city”
, Doe told us. “Make sure you vote this November, for whatever you want”. Then they launched into “The New World”…”it was better before before they voted for whatshisname…” Seemed like they kinda tripped up the lyrics at first, but maybe they meant to do it like that, whatever. It was sweet, and everybody singing along thought so too. The bulk of X’s catalog is made to sing along to. “I love singing with people”, Exene told the adoring crowd in front.

While we were in the bar my girl notes that cats are standing on the stairs, which is a BIG no-no whenever there’s a hiphop show. Where’s the overzealous security(except for Whitey, the dude of dudes) now though? RACIST. I had to check at the merch table & see if they had any X tees in XXL for ya boy. Course not, I don’t even know why I ask anymore…RACIST. While on the floor watching X tear it up, the AC was blasting something fierce…hiphop shows are always Tarzan hot in the Showbox…RACIST! I sang along with “White Girl” at my girlfriend, trying to be funny- definitely RACIST.

“Are you gonna sing our love song, Exene?” John asked. Awww. “They used to be married”, I whispered in my girl’s ear. “She also used to be married to Viggo Mortensen”, I also said. Anyway, their love song apparently was a breathless version of “Breathless”, my #1 jukebox pick whenever at Bill’s Off Broadway. As the intro to “Adult Books”, Doe unbuttoned his shirt for a sec to illustrate cheesy guys in the 80’s date-scene, which drew a lot of catcalls from the ladies, which was undoubtedly his intention.

They didn’t do my favorite joint, New World’s “Poor Girl”, but it’s all good, they roared thru classics from all of their good albums: “Sugarlight”, “True Love”, “Devil Doll”, “Johnny Hit And Run Paulene”, “Los Angeles”, “Your Phones Off The Hook But You’re Not”, “The Hungry Wolf”…you get it. I was stoked, Johnny-come-lately Me finally got to see one of his favorite bands. They killed it, they were nice- hell, “kindly” might be the word for Billy Zoom- and it was exactly what I expected. You what X sounds like? Yeah, they did that, like the whole time. Awesome.

RSS icon Comments


did they do Bad Thoughts and Motel Room?

psyched for tonight!

Posted by Paulus | March 31, 2008 11:59 AM

negative on both, ghost rider. I REALLY wanted Bad Thoughts too

Posted by lar | March 31, 2008 12:08 PM

Thank you for acknowledging Billy Zoom's waxy creepiness; he looks like he's related to the liquid terminator in T2. The note-perfect guitar solos only contribute to the freaky robotics, really.

Posted by joe mama | March 31, 2008 2:10 PM

Around the time of the Rodney King riots, I, white boy, wore my all-black-except-for-a-Kenneth-Anger-flaming-white-X cover of the record 'Los Angeles' teeshirt to an appointment with my black dentist. It took me nearly all of the very uncomfortable 45 minutes to figure out why everyone was acting so mad at me.

I wanted to hand out handfuls of the band's records, like lipstick, like gravel, but I did not have a stack handy to offer. Uncomfortable!

Posted by mike | March 31, 2008 3:24 PM


lol, I've definitely gotten props on my X button for the wrong reasons

Posted by lar | March 31, 2008 4:56 PM

Oh, man, I'm just jealous you went. I'm outta town.

I MET (not saw) the band in '81 (?), hangin' around outside a 21-and-up club in Indiana to get them to sign my soundtrack to Decline and Fall and Slash-label copies of X and Wild Gift (since lost, foolish me). Exene was the very nicest person ever and tried to sneak me and pals in. I must have been 15.

I SAW (not met) them next on their last tour before breaking up for a good long while. The opened for Warren Zevon, which, at the time, I thought was LAME, but now I kinda get the bill. My very attractive friend Sona had been ditched by her boyfriend for the show (an important club booker in our little college town), and came roaring into the little coffee shop where I worked with 'grudge fuck' written all over her very tight jeans, waved two tickets to the show under my nose, and informed me that we were going to go see X that night. Yowza!

Exene was preggers (I believe with Viggo's baby) and she and John were passive aggressive mad at each other all night. It was heartbreaking; "We're Desparate" was outstanding. We didn't sleep with each other - the onstage breakup cooled out the one in our own lives.

Ten or eleven years later, I'm at some wacky Seattle charity thing in Fremont - art mini golf or something - and my buddy and ex drummer Jim bounces up to me in the beer garden, asking if I was there to see X. I had no idea what he was talking about. I look over at the second act, some acoustic rockabilly act or something and HOLY SHIT IT'S JOHN AND EXENE AND DJ! They were testing the waters with a lo-fi acoustic tour up and down the coast to see if they would be able to deal or want to kill each other.

I bought a zine of Exene's poetry and chatted with her about that bar parking lot fifteen years prior. She remembers it, but remembers sneaking us in successfully. Good for her!

About a year, maybe two, later, they are fully reformed, Billy's touring with them, and they play Oz (I think) with Bob Log's wierdo busking blues band Doo Rag opening. I'm wearing a ridiculously white shirt that flouresces under the black lights in that enormous barn. Partway through the show, I insanely begin to pogo, way the hell back from the stage. On stage, John sees me, and begins to jump up and down in time with me while pointing at me and playing his bass lines one handed.

I love this band. My experience tells me they are worth loving. I'm so glad you have ears for this stuff - it brings life.

Posted by mike | April 1, 2008 8:09 PM

great story mike.

Posted by lar | April 2, 2008 8:50 AM

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