Thursday, July 26, 2012


First off, I apologize to everyone, I haven't been very disciplined with No Expiration lately.  I've gone to a bunch of shows, but I usually write less opinionated reviews for my day job at CBS Local Digital.

The Los Lobos show at Brooklyn Bowl took place a few weeks ago, but right afterwards -- funny enough -- I went to Mexico.  So I'm trying to catch up.

Los Lobos was actually one of the few bands still playing that I had never seen and wanted to.  I have missed them at least 20 times, so I'm glad I finally caught them - and they were great.

They opened with a set of traditional Mexican songs on acoustic guitars which was great.  It's amazing that they can go from that to putting on electric guitars and rocking.

I sense that their fans gravitate to a certain albums:  Kiko, Will The Wolf Survive? and Colossal Head.  And some of the songs from those eras got pretty great reactions from the crowd: "Kiko," "Will The Wolf Survive?" "Don't Worry Baby" and "Mas Y Mas" were some of the biggest crowd pleasers.

The other big crowd pleasers, unsurprisingly, were covers: Sonny Boy Williamson's "One Way Out" (which they do in the style of The Allman Brothers Band's cover) and The Grateful Dead's "Bertha," which they covered for a Dead tribute album a few decades ago.  I'm sure they got tired of doing "La Bamba" a long time ago.

I went without expectations of hearing any specific eras, but I was a bit disappointed that they didn't play songs from their most recent album, 2010's Tin Can Trust, one of my favorite albums of that year.

But really, I was just happy to finally see them perform and they didn't disappoint.  I would definitely go again. Here's hoping that'll be soon!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012


Angelo Moore/ photo credit: Maria Ives 
I saw Fishbone at the Brooklyn Bowl Sunday night, they were amazing.  I think that this is the first time I've reviewed one of their shows for No Expiration, because I haven't seen them in concert since I started this blog, years ago. What was I thinking?

Well, I was thinking that with only half of the original lineup left - singer/sax player/theramin-ist Angelo Moore, bassist Norwood Fisher and trumpet player/singer Dirty Walter Kibby II - well, it might not be as good as it was in the early '90s.

That reasoning works for most bands, but not all: The Allman Brothers Band only have half of their original lineup and they're incredible live as well. Turns out, it's the same for Fishbone. Like the Allmans, they have some great musicians rounding out their lineup: guitarist Rocky George used to be in Suicidal Tendencies and is a great addition to the band. Another great addition is Jay Armant, the trombone player.

On Sunday night, Fishbone played as if they had something to prove, and maybe they did: maybe they want to let people who haven't seen them in a while (like me) know that they are still great live.

Norwood Fisher/ photo credit: Maria Ives
They were. They played lots of classics: "I Wish I Had A Date," "Another Generation," "Everyday Sunshine," "Ma and Pa," "Bonin' In The Boneyard," "Question Of Life," "Lyin' Ass Bitch," "Skankin' To The Beat," "Party At Ground Zero," "Give It Up," "Sunless Saturday" and their covers of Curtis Mayfield's "Freddie's Dead" and Sublime's "Date Rape." The new members played each song like it was *their* song.

It wasn't just about the past though, they also played some songs from their Crazy Glue EP, which came out last year: the title track, "DUI Friday" and "Gittin' In That Ass" all made the setlist.  I don't know if everyone there knew those songs - but they were into it when the band played them.

I have to say this: Angelo Moore is one of the best frontmen I've ever seen. I'm glad that he and Norwood have stuck together for so long: they remind me of Anthony Keidis and Flea, and I think they are just as talented.  It's crazy to me that this band never got bigger than they did.

Walter Kibby / photo credit: Maria Ives
The mosh pit was swarming all night and there was a great energy: Norwood told the audience that they were taking him back to the days that Fishbone played The Ritz... the venue they played when they were the hottest band in the land, circa Truth and Soul.

I had a blast at the show: I definitely enjoyed the earlier songs more, but the new ones were cool also.  I haven't loved the albums they've done since Give A Monkey A Brain, but the Crazy Glue songs were definitely rocking, and I bought the EP while I was there.

 A few nights before the show, I watched Everyday Sunshine, the excellent Fishbone documentary. I never really knew the band's inside story, and having learned a bit more about them, I wonder if they could ever reunite for new music or a tour. No disrespect to the current band, who were amazing.  But I'd love to see the original lineup one more time.  But even if that doesn't happen, I'll definitely check out Angelo, Norwood, Walt and the rest of the guys next time they come to town.