My Top Ten Favorite Shows of 2014…

I know this sounds like bullshit and I do say it every year, but each year gets better. I’d be lying if I said 2014 was the best year of my life, but as far as KLYAM goes it was definitely the best year for KLYAM. Every year does get better, just look at our label. We put out three more releases that we’re very proud of – Nice Guys/Miami Doritos Splifft 7″, Back Pages – Singles 13, and The Electric Street Queens – Live From Your Dreams, We’re The… and we have more on the way. Just look at our calendar, we went to more shows than ever this year. I counted 85 shows I attended this year, I know for some people that’s nothing, but considering I’m not in a band, I don’t have a car, I’m broke, and don’t live in the city, I’d say that’s pretty good. But hey, it’s not quantity, it’s quality (though we got both!), so here’s my top ten favorite shows from 2014:


10) The Orwells & Twin Peaks @ Great Scott (3/4) – Our dudes, The Orwells always put on a fantastic show and we saw them three times this year, but the Great Scott set was by far the best. Right up against the stage where the action is, no douchebag security guys or broseph stalins, just straight up fun. Oh and who could forget Mario hucking the mic stand into the crowd. Classic. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/04/05/review-the-orwells-twin-peaks-great-scott-3414/

Thieves Grotto
9) TIE: Nice Guys & Miami Doritos Tour Kick Off w/ Malportardo Kids and Grave Ideas & Nice Guys, Free Pizza, Ladybones, Dinoczar, both @ Thieves Grotto (2/28 & 11/21, respectively) – This is just one big shout out to the Grotto and Nice Guys. Nice Guys are honorary klyamers and so are Miami Doritos, and we love Free Pizza, we’ll miss those Miami boys. Ahh so much Miami! Guys, pizza, doritos. All the bands are named after food! Haha, but ya Thieves Grotto throws the most insane basement shows and it’s always a party. I wish every show was like these shows. KLYAM Review (2/28): https://klyam.com/2014/03/22/review-nice-guys-miami-doritos-tour-kick-off-thieves-grotto-22814/ & (11/21): https://klyam.com/2014/11/26/nice-guys-free-pizza-thieves-grotto-112114/

Cumstain Boston
8) Cumstain, Free Pizza, Gangbang Gordon (BUFU Tape Release), White Pages @ JP Drive In (8/24) – I still haven’t gotten over this show, not even just the show itself, but the very fact that it happened. Call me crazy, call me wild, call me a cocksucker, I don’t give a fuck. I’ve been waiting to see this band for four years now, I still can’t believe it. It was awesome to finally meet the stains themselves as well. This show is also significant because it was the first KLYAM Presents show in nearly a year and it was my homie, Gangbang Gordon’s BUFU tape release show. Cheers buddy. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/09/20/review-cumstain-free-pizza-gangbang-gordon-tape-release-white-pages-jp-drive-in-82414/

NO NO
7) Nobunny, The Hussy, The Fagettes, Banditas, Gangbang Gordon @ Middle East Upstairs (2/4) – NO NO needs NO introduction. It’s always a blast seeing the bunnyman in action, especially in front of a rowdy, sold out Boston crowd filled with tons of my friends. Solid set of openers including one of my favorites, The Hussy, whom made both their Boston and KLYAM debut. A highly memorable show that brought us some joy and warmth in the middle of a shivering, cold ass winter. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/02/15/review-nobunny-the-hussy-fagettes-banditas-gangbang-gordon-mid-east-upstairs-2414/

Lipss
6) Black Lips & Natural Child @ Paradise (4/19) – Of course, my favorite band, Black Lips, of course you’d see them here and you’ll see them again my friends. At last, I can finally put them on my year end lists again; we haven’t seen the flower punkers live since 2011. WHATT?! This was also my first time seeing Natural Child, yet another band I’ve been anticipating seeing for years. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/05/31/review-black-lips-natural-child-paradise-41914/

Lipskkbbq
5) Black Lips, The King Khan & BBQ Show, Coke Weed @ Port City Music Hall (9/27) –  I always love seeing a show at a venue I’ve never been to before, even if it’s a traditional music hall, it’s still new to me. I haven’t been in Portland (Maine) for a while, so that’s an added bonus. More importantly, this is a KLYAMER’s wet dream bill. Two giants of contemporary garage slime, straight up Rock ‘n’ Roll all in one night. Definitely some of best I’ve seen from the Lips and KKBBQ in years. No KLYAM Review, because my dog ate it. Do kids still say that?

Ty Great Scott
4) Ty Segall, La Luz, Boytoy @ Great Scott (9/19) – At this point in his career, Ty Segall can and will sell out large clubs, but that wasn’t the case this time. The show was sold out, of course, but it was at Great Scott, a relatively small venue. This is Ty here. I never thought I’d see him on that small stage. It was nuts. A vicious set with tunes from all over his career. Why can’t all my favorites just stop here? No bigger clubs (except Middle East). Ty’s the face of our rock ‘n’ roll and this show is a testament that Boston loves him. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/10/06/review-ty-segall-la-luz-boytoy-great-scott-91914/

Fall Tour
3) Black Lips, The King Khan & BBQ Show, The Kominas @ Paradise (9/28) – Christ, what a Black Lips whore. You knew what you were getting into when you started reading this. Night II of my Black Lips/KKBBQ Rock ‘n’ Roll Weekend and as you can probably tell the superior of the two nights. In particular, the Lips shined through cranking out golden oldies such as “I’ve Got A Knife” and “Ain’t No Deal” among other classics from all over their fifteen year reign of terror. These Atlantans were as feisty as ever (including newcummer/oldcummer Jack Hines, welcome back Jack!). Speaking of bodily fluids, never thought I’d see Cole peeing in his mouth again, damn I thought that was over after 2006 haha. Best of all, the Lips and KKBBQ merged as one and performed as the gospel supergroup, The Almighty Defenders. I SAW THE LIGHT. Oh and we got to enjoy a beer with some of the guys backstage, also something I’d never expect at the Paradise. I told Jared that I lost my virginity while The Spooks were playing in the background, which is true, he said “Well, cheers to that!”  Yes, cheers.

Dusk
2) Atlantic Thrills (Album Release), Ravi Shavi, Gymshorts, Littlefoot @ Dusk (2/1) – Providence consistently dishes out the wildest shows and this was total debauchery, one of the craziest shows I’ve ever seen. While, I don’t think anyone was hurt (though I had several bruises) I do mean crazy. The word gets tossed around all too often, but this one is up there. Pandemonium. At the very least, just good old fashioned fun. Whether it was all the nudity, moshing, silly string, beer flying, or simply singing along to all the songs we’ve come to know and love, it was a special little feeling you don’t get often and if I could trap it in a bottle and sell it to all of ya’ll, I’d be a billionaire.  And we KLYAMERS have really been waiting for this record to come out, three years now. An epic show with stellar opening sets might I add. What we call in my line of work  a “stacked line up.” Keep up the craziness in 2015 and beyond. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/02/10/review-atlantic-thrills-album-release-show-w-ravi-shavi-gymshorts-littlefoot-dusk-2114/

BUFU sch
1) BUFU Fest @ Cambridge Elks Lodge (4/25 & 4/26) – I’ve been to a few local music festivals now, but this one tops them all. Easily the closest to what a KLYAM Fest would look like (Fuzzstival is a close second though). A wide variety of acts being thrust in your face. One moment you’re rocking out to the Nice Guys, the next you’re singing along to ACLU Benefit’s one man show, then the next minute you’re shouting about “living in Boston, Massachusetts” with Free Pizza or you’re caught in a mosh with Guerrilla Toss. I’m ready to do it all over again this year. KLYAM Review: https://klyam.com/2014/06/14/bufu-fest-recap-425-2614/

So, that’s that. As I said before, there were a ton of excellent shows I/we attended this year, I could make an honorable mentions list, but the list would go on and on. At the very least, here’s a list of my favorite bands I saw for the first time in 2014 in chronological order: Littlefoot, The Hussy, The Sulk Scouts, Buttercup, Tacocat, Durt Dog The Band, Natural Child, Juan Wauters, ACLU Benefit, The Ar-Kaics, Beach Toys, Robot Death Kites, Black Beach, The Lemons, Cumstain, (New England) Patriots, Ben Katzman’s DeGreaser, Good Nature (formerly known as Phaze), Ausmuteants, Ursula, Show Me The Body, Buck Gooter, Big Buck Hunter, and Feral Jenny.

Review: Rock ‘n’ Roll BBQ Part II (5/3/14)

BBQ II
Bands: Gymshorts, The Ar-Kaics, Atlantic Thrills
Date: Saturday, May 3, 2014
Location: Providence, RI

We always love making the trip down to Providence to see our favorite rock ‘n’ roll bands and say hello to some  friends, and who knows maybe make some new ones. Last year’s Rock ‘n’ Roll BBQ was one of my favorite shows ever and certainly the best from last Summer. Ahh the mammaries, I mean the memories. There’s always love and strangeness in the Providence air, isn’t that right Mr. DJ Studs Jerkel? Ahh my main man Studs!

Atlantic Thrills – If you were to make a movie about my youth Atlantic Thrills would have a sure spot on the soundtrack. Hell, they could even have a cameo. Needless to say, we’ve seen these guys a gazillion times and it’s always worth it. It may not be the most original music in the world, but that’s garage rock for you. I’ve come to recognize which bands recreate the sounds of the 60s well and which ones make a mockery of it. The Thrillz are definitely part of the former. Those sweet surf sounds, doo wop slop gang vocals, and catchy guitar licks rest easy on my wounded ears on this breezy  Spring night. Outdoors shows are the best, we need more of these.

It’s an awesome set, but something is missing or I should say someone. Much to my shock, guitarist/vocalist Kelly Riley is no longer in the band. It just isn’t the same without Kelly’s evil glares, hootin’ and hollerin’, and just overall enthusiasm. Definitely a focal part of the music. In his place tonight is Rafay Rashid of fellow Providence rock ‘n’ roll group Ravi Shavi. Rafay does a fine job with the tunes and it feels natural, still you can’t replace Kelly.

The foursome mix Thrillz standards such as “Acid Rain,” “Problems,” “Light Shines,” and more with somewhat newer tunes like “Bed Bugs” and “Almost Anything.” They conclude with an entirely new song (at least to my ears) about waiting for the weekend or something like that. I’ll have to hear it again sometime hopefully sooner than later. https://www.facebook.com/AtlanticThrills

The Ar-Kaics – Keeping the fierce rock ‘n’ roll spirit alive is Richmond, VA’s Ar-Kaics.  I’ve never heard of them until now, but they are more than up our back alley as far as rock ‘n” roll slime goes. They have a similar aesthetic as Atlantic Thrills, but with more of a mellow attitude. With that being said, they have an even greater grip on the 60s sound. I mean this is Back From The Grave shit right down to the bare bone. I also hear Seeds, Sonics, and 13th Floor Elevators. All that good stuff.

Before and after the set we have the pleasure of meeting and chatting with this charming bunch. Johnny gives us a nice little lecture on the history of garage rock and the various garage comps over the years that have helped shaped their style.

Impressed with their music, both Glen and I snag a copy of their “Make It Mine” 7″. It’s a keeper. Hope to see you old souls back in Boston/New England in the near future! CHECK IT OUT: http://thearkaics.bandcamp.com/

Gymshorts – Gymshorts, another local band, carry the garage punk torch and finish up this evening’s trilogy of badass music. These shorts have a like minded sense of loose garage noise, but they pack in a few more punches, a solid kick in the nads. It’s more of the punk in garage punk, if you will. After a while, these terms can get annoying and overused, but I’ll continue to employ them as a point of reference. Or maybe I should play with your head and tell you it’s late 90s swing revival. It could be, it’s just as fun.

I’ve seen the Shorts in Boston and Lowell several times now, but it’s sick to see the band again in their home turf. By the time they hit stage, errr I mean ground I’m feeling A OKAY,  all slop bop, and no pop. Their greasy grimy, feverish gunk only makes me want to flop and plunge to the pavement. In the process, I lose the top button to my shorts – they’re not my pair of gymshorts however, thank God. That would have been just too damn ironic. So, essentially I spend the whole set, rocking out whilst keeping  a grip on my shorts to make sure they don’t fall down on me.  What a sticky situation. I’m telling you guys, weird shit always happens to me in Providence. Oh Brother.

LISTEN UP! http://gymshorts.bandcamp.com/