So anyway, here are the things that leaped out from the pre-party at the Majestic complex on Wednesday night onto my face.
The Walking Beat, featuring Jesse Smith among other local quality musos, put on a great show considering it was the band’s first show EVER. The music is laid back and charmingly ragged anyway, so any blips just added to the warmth.
Jesse and the Gnome are magnificent fun live, but I don’t dig watching bands on that stage in the Garden Bowl. Previous years have seen the Majestic café and the Majestic Theater put to good use. Not sure why that stopped, but it’s a shame.
Matt Jones & the Reconstruction play sweet tunes with smart lyrics and gorgeous melodies. But with the evening moving on rapidly during a midweek show, personally, I needed something more adrenalin-fuelled to keep me going.
Kim Fowley wasn’t it. All eyes seemed to be on the songwriter/mouthpiece who formed the Runaways this evening, and it was hard not to get caught up in the mini-fever. This guy does have an impressive production CV after all, and no one can deny his great eye for greatness. Thing is, on stage, he offered little tonight, flanked by some of our finest, including Matt Smith and Troy Gregory, and introduced on stage by the most Californian fetish model in California (Snow Mercy is her name), but the whole thing felt flat and rushed and ad hoc (which it was). Though Fowley is in questionable health at the moment ...
On the other hand, the Hounds Below are absolutely incredible. Musically magnificent with non-stop energy and killer tunes filled with hooks and lush melodies, I love this band more every time I hear it. Jason Stollsteimer, if there is any justice, is about to get a second shot at mainstream success. The band is about to hit Europe, and those guys will surely love the Hounds.
Everything after than was a messy blur. The Hounds took the night by the scruff of the neck and well and fucking truly started this festival.
And then I slept.