Sunday, May 15, 2011

Writing Madness & Type O Negative--Why Not?

Does it really have to make sense? Riffing here again, so busy with revisions it's making me mad, I tell you--Mad! Mad crazy, not mad angry--I love it!  So, blog on the back burner but, then again, there's music journalism to steal from so--why not?  (Hmmm, is "why not?" the theme here?)

My buddy, Fred, has called me twice recently, trying to put together a list of all the concerts he's been to, of which a metric ton (can we weigh them for verification?) (Does it make sense?) (Does it really have to?) (Are you tired of paranthesis?) have been experienced with me. So, I went through some boxes in the back room and found a batch of concert stubs. Perhaps here is where the term "metric ton" would be more appropriate.

The things you remember and don't.  I just found out, astonishingly enough, I have seen David Bowie not twice, but three times! This amazes me, as I remember only two, have distinct recollections of elements from two, but there was a third?  Hmmm...

I'd seen Type O Negative at least 5 times, always a stellar live show, a fun band to see, the late, great Pete Steele's presence and attitude always amusing. Here's a brief concert review I whipped up for Outburn magazine--really, it was done on the fly and out before I had a chance to think on it, just like this post. 

When you do writing like this it's called, "rolling with it."  Or not?  Why not? 

Maritime Hall, San Francisco, CA. October 14, 1999

After guest list confusion (wrong list, I paid, later informed of the right list, much to my dismay; at least it was not as bad as the raving Clan Of Xymox "Do you think I would have their fucking tattoo if I was not their…" wife/relative/something mess--hell, if I would have had a plus one I would have dragged her in just to curb her skyrocketing stress), I climbed the stairs, straight into the electro goth of Clan Of Xymox, quality stuff out of the Sisters Of Mercy mold; followed by the musically out of place Puya: Korn as conceived by Santana stuff done well, the energetic vocalist looking like Zack from RATM; after too long (again--just get the equipment off the friggin stage!), Fu Manchu sludge through their stoner haze excuse to riff away and…finally! Type O Negative hit the debris strewn stage (garbage cans, automobile grill…), sound clarity amongst the best one could ask for in a concert setting (hey, it's not just a white noise tsunami, each instrument has sonic distinction--it sounds like Type O!), opening with a bit of Pink Floyd before getting "My Girlfriend's Girlfriend" out of the way, then really hitting their stride. Showcasing the latest disc ("Everyone I Know Is Dead," "World Coming Down," and a searing, bombastic "White Slavery" being particular highlights) while not forgetting the core material from the previous two CDs ("Wolf Moon," "Christian Woman," a riveting "Black # 1," and a raucous "Kill All The White People" being the standouts), adding a massive dose of cover songs (Sabbath's "N.I.B." a punked out CCR "Bad Moon Rising," the Beatles "Back In The U.S.S.R.," and snippets of Zeppelin, Nirvana, and more), all with panache and Pete Steele's amusing stage demeanor ("We've reached the halfway point…it doesn't get any better…"; while holding up the devil's horns flaunted at so many metal shows, "What's this? Fuck You two times?!"), Type O's showmanship and talent shone throughout their expansive show. An enduring night (in more ways than one), but worth the wait for the green-tinted, goth inflected, metallic finale. --JC Smith

Aaaaand, here's a clip for your listening pleasure!


  1. Mad crazy?! That sure sounds like tough work!

  2. haha, very funny, Alessandra! But, then again, you know me well enough to know that Mad Crazy is almost a permanent state of being! :-P