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Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Danzig. Doyle. Deafness...

Yesterday I left work and I headed down to Providence R.I. to go see Danzig and "The Blackest of the Black" at Lupo's Heartbreak Hotel. As I had written earlier, I was pretty primed up to see the show, since besides being a big fan of Danzig's solo stuff, I love the Misfits and Doyle was going to come out and do a Misfits set with Glenn. Very cool.

The ride down to Providence was a haul because I work up near N.H., but thankfully traffic was not too bad. No gridlock on 495, for once.

Once I got into Providence, I began my quest to find Lupo's. I had never been there before so I had to drive around lost a little bit and check out some one way streets as well as accidentally run a stop light before I actually found it. It turns out it's practically right off the highway. I wound up driving past it twice before I realized I was going right by it. There's not a big marquee or anything. It looks like any other store front, so I missed it. Once I located the club, I then had to drive around looking for parking. Thankfully there is a nice easy parking garage practically next door. The problem is, once you drive past something in this part of the city, like I did a bunch of times, you have to work your way back up all the one way streets.

It was no big deal since I got there in plenty of time. After I parked I headed over to a nearby bar for a few drinks before the show. I went into a place called Murphy's Deli and Bar. This place is literally right around the corner from the club and it is a great place to hang out. They've got all the thick beers on tap, Guinness, Murphy's, Smithwicks, Harpoon... so many to chose from. I wound up staying in there for several Smithwicks, a cup of chili, Bruins hockey, Irish Coffee and a Powerball ticket before I finally uprooted myself and went over to the show. I was feeling pretty right at home just hanging out in there but I did not want to miss too much of the show.

When I went into Lupo's they were setting up for Bohemoth, who was the 3rd band, so I had missed the first two bands. I was kinda bummed but it's my own fault. Oh well.

I thought Bohmoth was pretty good. They're kind of a speedmetal, non-stop, double-bass drum onslaught type band. They all have very long hair that they whip around a lot and all the guys wear ghoulish white makup. Ooohhh. Scary! Heh. I could not make out a word that the guy singing was saying, and he 'sang' in that gutteral, yelling thing that a lot of bands do now a days. Plus, they talked in a real German sounding accent, "Vhaaat, aaar ve tooo fast for you?" (I think they're from Poland actually.) At first I was not too impressed with them, but they grew on me a little as they played. I thought they were a good warmup band.

Next came Chimaira. I liked these guys, though the singer was another one of those gutteral, yelling guys. The guitarist had some good riffs and they got some good metal groves going. It was not just non-stop, let me see how fast I can play the e-string and hit the bass drums stuff. Which was appriciated. I thought they were better than Bohmoth, which is to be expected, being the warm up band for Danzig.

Finally, it came time for Danzig to come out.

Before I talk about Danzig, I have 2 minor complaints to get off my chest.

First, the way Lupo's is laid out, the area in front of the stage where the pit usually forms is very small and right in the middle of the area in front of the stage is a semi-circular raised section that juts out right into the pit area, cutting the pit area almost in half. This raised section is a great spot to stand if you want to be close to the stage and not be in the pit, but if you are in the pit, it kind of blows having this big thing sticking out right there. Plus, the metal rails that are part of this raised section really hurt if you wind up getting pushed into them, as I found out.

The only other complaint I had was that the audio mix had Glenn's vocals nearly drowned out by the guitars and drums. Now anybody that knows Danzig knows that the key to the whole thing is his voice, so I was kind of annoyed that it was so hard to actually hear his singing over the drums and guitars at times.

Neither of these things are the bands fault, and I don't want to make it sound like they ruined the show or anything.

By the time Danzig had come out I had moved out of the pit area to the steps just above so I could get a good view of the band and also not get hit into that stupid metal railing thing. Plus there were some guys in the pit throwing punches and shit and I was not in the mood for that. I really just wanted to see Danzig so I just stayed on the edge and took in the show. I was still plenty close to the stage.

When Glenn hit the stage the place went nuts and he launched into some of the newer tunes which I honestly was not too familiar with, since I don't have Circle of Snakes yet, (it's on the list).

Glenn still has the ultra-magnetic quality about him as he works the crowd and he reeled everybody right in. The place was going absolutely insane and everybody was making the devils horns with their hands, which he just loves to see. He would egg everybody on and the crowd would respond, which would just get him more intense. It was pretty cool. One of the things about Danzig is you can tell he seems to really appreciate the fans and goes out of his way to get close to people near the stage and clasp hands, let them sing into the mic during choruses of songs, etc.

After he did some new songs, he got into some of the older songs, starting out with "How the Gods Kill" which everybody sang along with. At a few points during the show, Glenn would just stand back with a big smile and let the crowd sing all the words perfectly. I was having a great time during all of this obviously.

After doing a few older tunes such as "Her Black Wings", there was a little pause and Glenn said, 'well the moment you've waited for and heard about is here' and he called out Doyle, from the old Misfits days.

First off, Doyle is fucking huge. He's over 6 feet tall and totally fucking ripped with white skull makeup on and a long Devilock hanging down the front of his face. Wow. This was something I thought I would never see in my life. He came stomping out playing a low E chord with every step and then he stood there not saying a word, just looking around at everybody in the audience, like a very well trained attack animal (and Glenn holding his leash). That's one very menacing dude. And there's Glenn with a big grin just watching him, saying, "Well what do you think? Watch out he's dangerous," while Doyle blows a big bubble from the bubble-gum he's chewing. Cool.

They launched into some Misfits tunes with '20 Eyes' and just when I thought the place could not go any crazier or get any louder, everybody kicked it up another notch. There were bodies flying everywhere, the lights were up so you could see everything that was going on and everybody was shouting the words at the top of their voices along with Glenn. Amazing. It's hard to put into words actually. You just had to be there.

They also did Astro-Zombies, Skulls, Mommy (can I go out and kill tonight?), ["SINGLED OUT THE KIDS WHO ARE MEAN TO ME..." I love that line], Earth AD, Last Caress, We are 138... I was in Misfits glory. (If you look at my Lastfm page, you'll see I listen to the Misfits a lot). Whooa-Ohhhhh Oh! Fuckin-A it was great. Danzig seemed to really get into doing all the Misfits tunes and was all over the place on stage.

In between every song, Doyle would go back and switch guitars because he absolutely beat the thing to death while he was playing it. The song would end, he'd go back, switch guitars, stomp back to the front, playing the E chord with every step, look over at Glenn and they'd rip into another one. Every time the same thing. So cool.

After the Misfits set, Danzig's guitarist came back out with a sweet looking, cream colored Les-Paul and they did some more Danzig tunes. They did a bunch of older tunes off earlier albums like Lucifuge and Danzig I which was very cool, then they took a walk off back-stage.

At this point the chants started for the band to come back and they started playing an air-raid siren or something. This was the point when I think my ears told me fuck you, we are done for the night. That air-raid thing actually hurt and I had to stick my thumbs in my ears.

When the band came back, Glen called Doyle to come out again and he came stomping back out and they did some more Danzig tunes like 'Mother' as well as The Misfits 'Die, Die Die My Darling' (they played it the correct way, as Glenn pointed out, poking a little fun at Metallica I think).

When the show ended, I hung around for a few min hoping to get a set list but it wasn't happening so I took off. I could barely hear a thing except for the buzzing in my head. My ears are still ringing a day later (make it stop!) In hindsight I wish I'd had some ear plugs with me, especially when those air-raid sirens were going off. I think that's what did me in.

What a great show. I told my wife I wished they would come back around again because it was kind of like going to a movie that you get so totally into, you need to go see it again and experience it twice so you can really take it all in.


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