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the show. He's probably the only vegetarian (vegan?) amongst the bands. I think maybe I should ask him how he liked his deep friend veggie "shrimp," but then think better of it. Later I see him in the middle of the mosh pit with an almost inhuman look on his face, like he's meditating.
Lead guitarist Cole Alexander, looking like an Amish Pilgrim, sprays some honky gibberish into the mic, then gives the tour manager a knowing look and smile. I think he was talking about the Swine Flu when he basically calls us a bunch of pig fuckers and nobody bats an eye. Well, maybe if you properly enunciated your vowels, Mr. Cole, we'd take proper offense.
I meet up with EW photographer Todd Cooper before the Black Lips take the stage. He says he tried to get pre show photos of the band, but all of the members (except for Jared) were in the van sleeping. Turns out the band has to drive straight to Sacramento after their Eugene gig, and everyone takes turns at the wheel. Todd remarks that less people turned out for this Black Lips gig than their gig at the WOW last year. I can't be sure. Once the band takes the stage, and everyone trickles in, I'd say it's about the same number of people as last year (about half capacity). But what the crowd lacks in numbers, it makes up in energy.
I just went through CPR and Wilderness First Aid training, so my eye is spread equally on the band, the moshers and the floor, looking for any limp, trampled bodies that might require chest compressions and improvised splints. This is what it feels to be older and more responsible. At the Black Lips gig a year ago I was in the center of the mosh pit, now I'm on the periphery, keeping the peace, looking for blood.
It seems like The Black Lips won't do an encore. But they're lingering to the side of the stage, drinking water, so two dudes bum rush the stage and start a call and response of "Encore! Encore!" (I'm thinking, If only they did this sort of thing at the Eugene Symphony.) Sure enough the band is up onstage, playing a handful of tunes. It doesn't matter what they play. The crowd goes crazy for anything.
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My friend remarks on the massive mosh pit that takes up nearly three quarters of the crowd: Look, it's dude city in there! Where are the ladies? There are a number of ladies in attendance, sure, and quite a few are even enthusiastically moshing in what can only be a bone breaking pit. What I can't quite understand are the couples in the very front, constantly weathering a beating from the moshers, but looking up at the band in frozen tableau. Mostly it's men behind the women, softening the blows, but in one case a teenage girl grips the shirt of a teen boy in front of her as she gets thrashed around. She obviously looks uncomfortable, but wears an expression that says, "Well, I guess this is what it's like to see a show at the WOW Hall. I better just get used to it, especially if I want to be cool for my boyfriend."
Downstairs in the newly refurbished WOW Hall lounge there's large, comfy chairs replacing the hard plastic patio chairs. A friend and I can squeeze our butts into one of the extra wides. Across from us it appears that a young woman in her late twenties is speed dating two men, one on her left and one on her right. In the chair next to me sits a maniacal dude who keeps running off a Adidas Neo Superstar Shoes
When the band says it's Magic Time, that's the cue for the lights to go out and a psychedelic backdrop projected behind them. They do this for, like, four songs throughout the night. People throw their arms up and make shadow puppets on the band members' heads.
laundry list of the crazy shit that the Black Lips have pulled off at some of their shows, always finishing up with "That's just sick!" I can't tell if he's a sociopathic homophobic or Crotch Rock's Biggest Fan. He can't recall the name of some crazy rocker who did messed up shit at his shows. I proffer Ozzy Osbourne, and the dude goes into the details of Ozzy's infamous bathead eating displays, but then says No, that's not who I was thinking about. I could've suggested Sid Vicious (whom I mentioned in my article in this week's EW) but would rather not egg on this madman. After we ignore him for a good five minutes, he gets up and leaves. We steal his seat and discover he's left his cell phone. On our way upstairs to check out Flowers Forever we leave it at the WOW Hall's lost and found. Flashes of paranoia notwithstanding ("He left it for us to find it on purpose!"), I later see the madman near the front left speakers, but he isn't giving me the Crazy Eyes, so I calm down.
I look behind me and there's the keyboardist from Flowers Forever. He's got a '60s Mod hairdo, jet black rimmed glasses and a black hoodie. He was eating alone at the Lotus Garden around the block just before Adidas Neo Pace
The bassist switches guitars with Cole on stage right and high fives a guy in the front row. A teenage girl appears next to me with a look of adoration in her eyes for the bassist. She tries to find an opening so she can get to the front and have a chance to touch rock stardom with her very own flesh. But the crowd is too tightly packed. Later, she is consumed by the mosh pit but does just fine. I swear she is no older than 16.
Aside from a few knocked over mics, a few backwards rolls from Cole and a few fighting words uttered by the band, the Black Lips are pretty tame tonight. Instead they let the crowd do the crazy shit like jump from the stage, crowd surf, knock heads, flip the bird puke in the bathroom after it's all said and done. The Black Lips are OK with that. They have a long drive in the night, with nothing to think about except what the next day, the next venue, the next crowd and the next high will bring.
An older woman in her late forties keeps pushing me from behind, even when I'm not invading her personal space. I turn around and she gives me a crazy, vacant look. Later she sits on the stage, then lays back and reaches her hands Adidas Neo Shoes Men 2018 out for Cole to touch as he exits off the stage before the encore. He fails to Green Adidas Originals Shoes
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