Review: Shannon and The Clams, The Fagettes, Atlantic Thrills @ Great Scott (11/20/13)

Clams Great
Picture from Treat Yo Self

Bands: Shannon and the Clams, Fagettes, Atlantic Thrills
Date: Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Venue: Great Scott (Allston, MA)

Atlantic Thrills – It’s kind of crazy how life works sometimes. Take for instance these rock ‘n’ roll shows we go to. When we discover that a fantastic national band such as Shannon and the Clams is coming to town, we say to ourselves “gee whiz, wouldn’t it be swell if Atlantic Thrills and Fagettes opened?! What a fine bill that would be.” Fortunately, the stars have aligned for us, and here we are with the perfect bill! A casual reader might come across these words and say “wow, this dude’s reallyyy sucking these band’s dicks.” But, anyone that reads this site on the reg knows that Fagettes and Atlantic Thrills are two of our favorite bands, bands that we have repped hard for the last couple years. SO HATERS FUCK OFF!

Anyway, it’s awesome to see Atlantic Thrills on ye olde Great Scott stage. I’ve seen the band a gazillion times, but this is the first time I’ve seen them here at Great Scott, and it is ever so great. Old Glen caught the dudes here about a year ago with fellow Providence kingpins Ravi Shavi – yeah check out those dudes too! The sound is amazing and this is one of the best sets I’ve seen from the foursome. The sound definitely amplifies the Thrillz’  typically passionate, heartfelt, and above all beer  chuggin’, beer spittin’, balls out fun set. The group’s, gang styled doo wop vocals come through clearer and more powerful than ever. And they’re starting to really bring out a lot more doo wop in these newer tunes.

The band also unleash a steady batch of cuts from their classic catalog – many songs we’ve come to practically memorize over the years. All fast, psychedelic garage punk songs with memorable choruses and admirable musicianship. To quote a sagacious young man I know, it’s better to play music drunk, loose, and sloppy – as long as you know what you’re doing. This quasi paradox could certainly apply here.

Now, The Thrillz have played many a Boston show, but with this show they surely charmed some fresh faces on to their punk slime cult. I saw some of you new kids buying seven inches and tee shirts, that’s right!  And if you haven’t done so. Pick up Atlantic Thrills’ “A Day At the Beach” 7″ from Almost Ready Records:

Keep your eyes peeled for an upcoming full length also to be released on Almost Ready Records on February 4th! Lastly, Atlantic Thrills will be playing at the Middle East Upstairs for The Televibes’ tape release show on January 22 w/ The Guru and Vundabar. Do it up.

Set – List:
“Almost Anything”
“Bed Bugs”
“So Long”
“Drugs In It”
“Bone Rattle”
“Light Shines”
“Foreign Lands”
“A Day At the Beach”
“Mind’s Eye”
“Acid Rain”
“Salvaje” (Los Saicos cover)

Fagettes – The Fagettes are up there with Atlantic Thrills when it comes to the cream of the crop of New England rock ‘n’ roll. They hold a special place in our slimy hearts.

This Fagettes set is a lot of fun and people are dancing more than usual, which is always a good thing. The place is packed as fuck, making it difficult to get to the front of the stage, but I do my best. After all, I need to clutch my set lists, being a rampant set list devourer.

As of late, Fagettes have been playing a steady slew of old and new tunes. They play one song called “Stems and Seeds,” which they have only performed three times in the past: in Philly, in Ohio, and in Cambridge (I believe this was at the May 16, 2013 Middle East Upstairs Fagettes show, yeah I know I’m solidifying my status as the ultimate rock ‘n’ roll nerd with these obscure facts…).

My favorite song from tonight is “The AA Took My Baby Away,” a sad jam that always puts a smirk on my face, go figure. By the way, I never knew that the AA had the authority to take away babies!

Now go forth and listen to Fagettes my pretty child, my sweet one:

P.S. Did I see Matt wearing a Black Lips shirt? Looking sharp nice guy! Hahaha.

Set – List:
“Street Queens”
“On Drugs”
“Gonna Die Out Here”
“Mystery Pills”
“The AA Took My Baby Away”
“Bad Catholic”
“Stems and Seeds”

Shannon and the Clams – What kind of music do you like? “Rock ‘n’ Roll,” “Punk Rock,” “Pop.” Those are my top three answers to that dreadful question. But, as you all know those words mean different things to different people. For some clowns, 12 hour guitar solos = rock ‘n’ roll, this is time that would have been better spent shaking hands with the unemployed. When I mean rock ‘n’ roll, punk rock, and pop you damn well know I mean bands like Shannon and the Clams. I don’t own the definition of rock ‘n’ roll et al, but in my heart of hearts this is it. A buffet of distinctive, varied, and utterly sincere art and entertainment that stretches far and wide through the rock ‘n’ roll gamut. To get a better taste of the Shannon and The Clams dish, think Rosie and the Originals, Roy Orbison, Ramones, The Cramps, Circle Jerks, and the best of the best of both old and new garage spunk. FOR FANS OF HUNX AND HIS PUNX AND NOBUNNY FO SHO.

Our proud rock ‘n’ rollers roll out the soft and ever so sweet “Done With You” as tonight’s opener. A sweetie from the group’s 2011 mind mutilating LP Sleep Talk. The sound of Shannon and the Clams is bone crushing, shivers down my spine, slithering all the way down to my testes, so slimy it makes my balls drop. It’s an intimidating, gargantuan sound and presence. The vocals are easily some of the greatest in modern rock ‘n’ roll. Shannon’s and Dan’s voices are lunatic, we’re talking crazy good. The judges on Idol and Voice would wet their panties and spill out their guts if they were ever in its vicinity, except they won’t because those shows suck  ass. It’s still worth noting, since most rebel rousers in this line of work scream and shout their little hearts out, true, but few actually have professional pop singer voices (and that’s usually a good thing). In this instance, it works. Shannon and Dan are up there with the all time greats: Ms. Kline, Mr. Cooke, Mr. Orbison, and that charming Canadian fellow, Mr. Sultan.

Thee Clamers (not KLYAMERS ha!) rip through a searing batch of tunes from Sleep Talk (2011), Dreams In The Rat House (2013), and beyond. One of my favorite moments is when the trio performs a cover of the Del Shannon classic “Runaway.” I told you these punks have a soft spot. Speaking of punks, there is plenty of feisty enthusiasm on display from both the  band and the audience. Patrons dance and mosh and slam all around. It’s a solid time had by all. One of the best shows I’ve seen all year. Read the set – list below and then cry like a stupid, weak, little baby if you were one of the sad saps that missed out on it. Look at the weak little baby! You’re stupid! You stupid, weak baby!

Set – List:
“Done With You”
“Hey Willy”
“You Will Always Bring Me Flowers”
“Warlock In The Woods”
“Oh Louie”
“King Of The Sea”
“Rip Van Winkle”
“Into A Dream”
“Runaway” (Del Shannon cover)
“You Can Come Over”
“Tired Of Being Bad”
“The Cult Song”
“Rat House”

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