Monday, January 26, 2009

Jay Reatard Throws Girl into Crowd @ The Independent

"Last Night I had a dream that turned into a nightmare." ... though the words were merely an introduction to 's "Nightmares" midway into his set at the Independent on Sunday night, they summed up an evening of amazing garage-punk-rock-and-roll in a somewhat prophetic way.

Opening the night was , a trio from Oakland featuring Erin Emslie on drums, Paul Keelan (guitar) and Matthew Melton (bass). The band sped through a series of 6 songs with enough time to sing Emslie a warm Happy Birthday. They wasted no time between songs, and if it wasn't for the band name taped to the drum kit, we might not have even known what they were called. Despite the lack of banter, they were able to draw the attention of a nearly sold-out crowd at the Independent with their performance. Some might believe they sped through their set because they wanted to get through as many songs as possible... I believe that they just wanted to get back stage to make sure their shit wasn't getting thrashed by 2nd opener, Nobunny.

took the stage quickly since they were using the Bare Wire's drum kit. After taping a band t-shirt over the bass drum, the members took the stage. The lead singer came out last with his trademark bunny mask, a sharp 'Nobunny' smoking jacket, no pants, tight brown underwear and one woman's shoe. I feared that this image may haunt my dreams/nightmares, but I left the show strangely wanting more. It is safe to say that this performance may rank as one of the strangest, liveliest, most fun and utterly disturbing of all time.


Well, most of 's set was pretty straightforward, that is to say, rocking. The crowd was extremely animated with a fairly sizable mosh pit developing at times. On the last song of the set, Jay pulls up a drunk girl out of the crowd and gives her his guitar to make some noise... Drunk girl, sitting on the edge of the stage proceeded to strum aimlessly. She then rolled onto her back and kicked her feet into the bassist and threw the guitar on the stage. I didn't think that was part of the act, but Jay Reatard did not notice she had done it. Rule #1 of Rock and Roll: DO NOT FUCK WITH ANOTHER MAN'S AXE. She proceeded to pick up the guitar again and throw it again this time with a little more force (as if to smash it). At this point Jay picked her up and hurled her into the crowd. Well, I can't even begin to tell you how incredible it was to see this little lass fly through the air. It kinda looked like a blow up doll being thrown at a concert festival. I wish I had video of it... and if you do, please post a link in the comments.

The band finished the song, Jay put down the guitar, flipped off the girl and started walking off stage as he was pelted with a water bottle presumably thrown by the girl (or one of her friends). I did not think that Jay would come out for an encore, so at that point I left. Incidentally, the drunk girl was not hurt. She was outside laughing about the incident and was plotting a quick getaway.

All told, the nightmares of the evening made this a dream rock show. Get out and see any of these three bands whenever you can.

Nobunny is playing:
2/4 @ The Knockout in San Francisco
2/7 @ The Stork Club in Oakland.

Bare Wires is playing
1/30 @ Ghost Town in Oakland
2/5 @ Hemlock in SF
2/21 @ Hemlock in SF

Nobunny photo credit to: Photo Credit: Scott Caris
More pictures and the

Another recount here

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