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Friday, June 30, 2006

So Far as I Could Tell

Posted by on June 30 at 11:12 AM

It’s Friday. I do not feel like writing about the viaduct or Mike McGavick or Maria Cantwell or Greg Nickels or net neutrality or even Linnea Noreen. At all.

What I feel like Slogging about, or at least sharing, is this Village Voice rock review from 1984. It’s a review of a Meat Puppets gig. I’m not sure what the bizarre suggestion to Henry Rollins is about—although, it seems well stated. Anyway, this far-flung bit of alternative paper poĂ©sie made my week.

Here are the last two paragraphs:

The crowd, of course, was there for headliners Black Flag, and gave the openers a respectable-at-least reception—but the makeup of the audience itself made a much better analogy for the Meat Puppets’ declaration of the twists in everybody’s roots than for Black Flag’s newly bombastic dirges (suggested lyric for Henry Rollins: `I want to speak French but I don’t know how/Gonna beat my head in’). The crowd was a likably eclectic bunch, unideological even about (their) alienation—not only hardcore fans, but flannel-shirt types, college kids, a surprising number of women, aging counter-culturists, somebody’s mom. There we all were, a hopeless residue on the periphery of a culture that had made losers of us all, and liking it. When the Meat Puppets ended their set with `Tumblin’ Tumbleweeds,’ it didn’t sound like a gag, it sounded like a bedraggled anthem for what we all had in common, and I didn’t even care that so far as I could tell nobody else in the room thought so at all. —Tom Carson, Village Voice, 4/24/84

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Josh, that is AWESOME!! it serves to remind me there is something HUGE missing today, an immediate clarity and unity, It was what MADE the '80s scene(s) so important, one which I reckon will never ever again be regained. sad really. and at the time we had no idea how good we had it, but now to look around at the "scene" and all that is has brought...well, it only makes me want to close my eyes and never look again.

Tom Carson is one of the greatest writers on all forms of media that I've ever read. I don't know where he's writing now, but in general he writes too little about rock'n'roll these days...I remember his dissection of "From a Distance" (Bette Midler) in the VV in about 1992 or whenever it was a hit. Awesome...His novel, Gilligan's Wake, is pretty awesome too.

My thing... is to produce my thing.

I didn't get to see the Meat Puppets until 1988, but I saw them a bunch of times. They always put on an amazing show!

I totally miss the atmosphere of shows back in the day. And the suggestions to Rollins is right on, heh.

I really dug the type of things that reflected the society, and I felt that this was something that could be a force in American music for communicating with the people.

i got to see black flag and the meat puppets on that tour in seattle's eagle hippodrome.

black flag put on an epic show (long hair, barefoot and torn gym shorts rollins era) that still remains in my personal top ten rock show experiences.

i wish i could have saw them in their LA heyday with dez/keith but i was still in high school and was lucky to be able to get into seattle for the occasional punk show!

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