Monday, August 18, 2008


You can always depend on Rancid for a great show, and they didn't disappoint last week when they kicked off a five night sold out stand at the Fillmore. (by the way, I didn't take this picture, I found it online, and saved it without remembering to note where it was from, and now I've forgotten - apologies to the photographer).

They kicked off the show with my favorite song of theirs, "Radio," which is where the lyric in the title of this post comes from (but it is a reference to Bob Marley's "Trenchtown Rock"). They cranked out about 30 songs in less than an hour and a half. I have to say that guitarist-singer Tim Armstrong didn't seem to be in top form, but guitarist-singer Lars Frederiksen more than made up for it, and no matter what, the two guys have a great chemistry between them, kind of like the way The Beastie Boys bounce off of each other. I heard pretty much every song I had hoped to hear, and a version of Operation Ivy's "Knowledge" was a bonus.

I saw Rancid for the first time probably in 1994, when they'd released Let's Go, and every label was chasing them. They were opening for their then-Epitaph labelmates The Offspring, who at the time were the biggest commercial success story from an indie label. I wasn't that into Offspring, but I thought Rancid were awesome, I became a fan right there. I've seen them many times since.

One time, a few years ago, they played Roseland. Through some industry connections, I got into the V.I.P. section, which was mostly empty. The show, though, was totally sold out with kids who knew every word to every song. You get the point, and that's the deal with Rancid.

Last week, I doubt many "industry" people were attending the Rancid shows - which is fine, as Rancid doesn't need those people anyway. Long may they run.

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