Fun Fun Fun, Day One (i.e. Night)

It was pledge week. “Call to make your pledge now, decease ” said the DJ, site “and be entered into a drawing to win passes to Fun Fun Fun Fest, where Bob Mould will be performing the classic Sugar album Copper Blue in its entirety!”

“Wow.” I said. “That would be pretty cool to see. Oh well.” I didn’t feel like I could afford to go. And I don’t like festivals much. Even if Nomeansno is playing their first show in Texas since I started listening to them.

“The magic of mobile!” My wife exclaimed proudly, five minutes later. “You’re going to Fun Fun Fun!”

She is amazing.

I decided to see Superchunk at the Mohawk on Thursday night so that I wouldn’t have to catch them at the festival on Friday. It was nice to be able to see them on a smaller stage, at night, the way punk rock was meant to be seen! They played well. They had great energy. But I just don’t think Superchunk’s music means that much to me. It occurred to me that Superchunk, with their modest hooks and paradoxically hyperactive and chilled-out demeanor, are a good band for “rescuing people from commercial rock,” as someone once described Sunny Day Real Estate. Unfortunately for me, I went to a Sunny Day high school, and I didn’t hear Superchunk for the first time until I was 23.

As Superchunk were winding down, I hustled down to Red 7 to catch some of American Sharks. I’m not exactly sure what I was expecting from them, but it wasn’t the fairly accurate Turbonegro impersonation that they delivered. I was impressed by the execution, but it’s not something I particularly care for. I guess Stephen Walker is not in this band anymore.

When I was in high school, I went to see a band called the Lechers. (well, not “went to see” them- I was at a punk show, and they were playing). They were a power trio who all dressed in black and had shaved heads. They played Oi! punk, except instead of yelling “Oi!,” they yelled “Hey!,” all in unison, the drummer through a headset mic. The Krum Bums didn’t do any of those things, but that’s what they reminded me of.

I wandered into the ND to the sound of the same reverb-drenched gobbledygook that Christian Bland delivers as a member of the Black Angels. The keyboard player was dressed up as a cowboy. How people are not tired of this stuff yet is beyond me.

I have a confession to make: watching Indian Jewelry almost always makes me fall asleep. It’s not that I don’t like their music; I do. It’s just that, when I see them, it’s always loud and dark and very late at night. My Monster Energy habit actually originated at an Indian Jewelry show at Emo’s Lounge a few years back, when I discovered that hypercaffeinated poison was a great help in my mission of remaining vertical.

I didn’t fall asleep watching Indian Jewelry on Thursday, though. Their performance had more focus, force and clarity than just about any other set I’ve seen from them, and I left more awake than when I entered. Well done.

Thursday night rating: Fun and a half