Thursday, December 04, 2003

BAMBOO MEETS THE DARKNESS: A second slice of Becky Bamboo, as she tussles with The Darkness in So Cal:

You know, it feels like we've all been with The Darkness from their humble beginnings playing to our own Robertshaw and a few other fans. It's like they're an honorary BSN band or something. So I don't know what I was expecting exactly, but it wasn't a sold out and extremely packed venue, scalpers outside, or a group (a fan club?!?) with handmade The Darkness t-shirts with each person's name lettered in gothic script on the back. (Seriously! They were too funny.) It wasn't the usual hipster crowd though - I overheard more than the usual number of British accents in the crowd (fairly typical at a show by a band who is big in the UK and virtually unknown over here), and the heavy metal fans seemed to be out in force.

The opening band was just finishing while I was waiting in line to pick up my ticket. There was no need to worry though, because it took The Darkness 45 fucking minutes to take the stage. That's pretty much unheard of at the smaller venues, where the turnaround time is usually a scant 15. Not cool. The only other band that's taken that long was The Libertines. It wasn't like people could go to the bar or anything either because everyone was squished together in a solid mass. Anyway. All was forgiven as soon as the band came out. After that it was balls-out rock (very nearly literally, given how low Justin's pants were) for the next hour. He ditched his shirt halfway through the second song to squeals of joy from the audience and subsequently changed into two different barechested jumpsuits (one silver and one pink and white striped) over the course of the show.

I've had the album for a few weeks now and it honestly didn't grab me like I thought it would, given my junior high love of all things hair metal.. White Lion, Def Leppard, Bon fucking Jovi, etc. But the songs worked so well live that I think when I go back and listen to it now I'll enjoy it a lot more. Justin is a fantastic front man who definitely knows how to work a crowd. He had the audience hanging on his every word, able to start a round of clapping with just a look and a gesture. Everyone was caught up and sang along from the first song. Hell, he even got me (ME!) to clap along and I never do that.

And I'm proud to say that the BSN tradition of groping Justin is alive and well. When he hopped on the bouncer's shoulders and started making his way through the crowd, I managed a quick squeeze quite high up his thigh. Of course, I nearly got run over by the bouncer in the process. Rock & roll, baby. Rock. And. Roll.

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