It's easy to get your rocks off when someone --- anyone --- is watching. The true test of a musician is when one can pour it all out with little or no feedback. Baby, it's a breeze and we're all rock stars when they're all drunk and flailing in front of the stage. But when the number of people on stage out numbers those in the club, it's work. So last Friday I went to Milestones to see my rockabilly boys (sadly a minority in this burg) Krypton 88 work and slave on the band stand. Warming up for Canadian SRV disciple David Gogo, the band sounded big and echo-y (bodies soak up the high end, donchaknow) and bopped through some classics including the King's "Paralyzed." Ain't heard that one in years. They sounded slick and shiny like Jim Via's big orange guitar.
Zipped over to WaterStreetMusic Hall to see A Flock OF Seagulls. Remaining Seagull Michael Score no longer sports his '59 Cadillac do, and looked uncomfortable and bored. I've never liked synthesizers --- or trusted them, anyway --- but the band actually didn't sound all that bad.
Waxing philosophical one night with Dick The Dancing Record, we concluded that 40 is the new 20. Now, I'm not knocking the tykes, but some of the best bands coming from Rochester lately have been marinated and seasoned in various outfits over the years and are now putting out some great music. The Atomic Swindlers, The Margaret Explosion, The Veins, The Grinders, The Quitters, to name a few, have members approaching their 40s, in their 40s, or over 40. And we're talkin' good music here too.
This started to make even more sense when The New York Vaults played The Spy Bar Friday. The band eventually mounted the stage perhaps a little somber but proceeded to blast forth the type of rock 'n' roll that just ain't in a kid's vocabulary. Sure, some of the younger kids in the joint dug it. But if they wanna play it --- and play it right --- they're gonna have to wait until they're older.