Sunday, May 16, 2004
Roger Miller, Clint Conley and Peter Prescott are Mission of Burma.
Unattractive picture courtesy Highroadtouring... nice site even if you don't book bands (and no, that was not a paid commercial announcement but hey, let's do lunch sometime).
MISSION OF BURMA // THE FIERY FURNACES // SOME OTHER BAND // May 15th, 9:30 Club, Wash DC
So, Burma was in town last night (that's Mission of Burma not the country) and I finally went to the new 930 club. Pretty cool place for a show -- lots more room and places to chill out or watch the show from the balcony -- close to the subway -- drinks are a tad expensive but they even have food (not in the old 930). I also like that they got rid of all the TV monitors -- guess you don't need them cuz you can see the band from everywhere.
Two bands open up. The first is appropriately called The Hiss -- as in the hiss that Foghat would make if they blew a wet fart at Iggy. I knew they were from DC when someone yelled to the singer, "YOU LOOK HOT!"... taken aback, the first thing he said was "and you sound hot." He shoulda left it at that but then the Ian voice must of kicked in as he then snidely said, "I wish you would have said that instead." Yes, we know... the creeping dangers of lookism. Well, you can take the band out of the Fugazi but you can't take the Fugazi out of the band. Remind me never to arrive early.
There were two of those "activists" there trying to sign up people to vote. They look oh so earnest and were interviewed by a TV crew from some Eastern European country. They signed up ONE person to vote and he was a guy wearing a football hat with a beer belly and goatee (shut up, not me) and I'm pretty sure he probably won't be voting for Kerry which is the unspoken intent of these folks. Republicans ought to start signing people up at wherever sympathetics show up -- preferably in the heartland in the malls.
So the next band -- Fiery Furnaces were almost awesome. They were a blast to watch and hear, very tight, interesting songs but went on about 10 minutes too long. There is only so much quirky alt-rock-pop operas I can take. They have a single out available on I-Tunes (and an older LP is there) that is a fine piece of summer fluff that in no way approximates the amazing show they put on (for too long). This was definitely a band qualified to open for Burma. They're on tour now and their website has the dates.
As for MoB --- what can I say? They've been gone from the scene for longer than most prison sentences. The cicadeas don't take as long a break. Crowd was mixed about 80-20 youngsters vs. aged folks like myself. The youngsters all knew the older songs by heart. Burma also had a reasonable volume level so some folks were able to take our the ear plugs and still stand near the speakers. Perhaps this is part of a result of Roger Miller's ear problems or just a general regard for the audience with the confidence that loud doesn't always mean good (hear that, The Hiss?). The songs pretty much rotated among each member (they all sing) and they played a good mix from the new album and some older stuff and some stuff I didn't recognize at all (which means they may have another album in them). By all means, get their newest (complete album at iTunes for 9.99, two songs available at the Matador Records site -- to the right, dummies) and if you can find it get Vs. I haven't checked this out but here's the alltheweb MP3 sweep for MoB (caveat auditor/corripio). . .
PS I have some Burma records in my collection but haven't found them yet (I'm going through a box at a time). I did find a Roger Miller solo album entitled Oh. guitars,etc... and it is in the queue.