Thursday was night one of three for International Pop Overthrow.
This year it was at The Union Tavern (formally PA’s).
It was at PA’s in 2016
also. In 2009 it was Church - 2013
it was at Precinct. In 2014
it was at O’Brien’s. 2015
was at PA’s. And in 2015 we did an interview with David Bash who is
the man behind the whole thing. You can
read that here.
The Eric Barao Band
The opening band was The Eric Barao Band. In many ways this
is one of the bands that typify the IPO. It was finely crafted pop song
craft. The set was mannered and tidy. Every note was practiced. For
one song they had their keyboard in harpsichord mode.
You couldn’t help thinking of The Left Bank. In our world everyone
is intent on rocking out but in bands like this you can see the benefits
of letting that urge go. Pop rock like this is all about the songs and
the tasty nuances and this band had it.
The Trick Wallace Group
Next up was The Trick Wallace Group who is a standby
in the Cambridge/Somerville bar scene. We could see his talents in the
Asa Brebner Memorial this last summer. He knows how to make you
feel comfortable and lead you through his set. He had lots of laugh
provoking comments. In a lot of ways he reminds us of Asa. He put some
grit into his set. He also has a lot of songs to choose from. He jumped
the gun just a bit with “Christmas in the Slammer” but we’re
glad he did, that was one of his best.
The next band, Glowbox, was unknown to us but some of the
WMFO jocks that were there (Michael Stewart and Mike
Newman) were big on them. It wasn’t hard to hear why. They were
full blown Power Pop the likes of which we haven’t seen from locals in
a while. It was all ear candy with crunchy guitars and three vocals going. They
reminded us of the Rubinoos or 20/20. Any of their songs could fit nicely on
any volume of Yellow
Pills. They put the frosting on the cake by covering “Bye Bye Love”.
It hit doubly with the song and the thought of saluting Rick Ocasack. We caught
one beauty on the video below.
And that is the beauty of going to the IPO. You get to see bands that David
Bash pics and he picks them well.
We left before the next band V is for Victor but heard they
impressed everyone also.
It was back to the Union Tavern again on Friday for day
two of the IPO. The night was a lineup of familiar bands to us.
Richie Parsons Group
We only saw one song by Richie Parsons who had a full band
for this show. The IPO is a perfect showcase for the songs in Richie’s
last two albums. The material in Black Throated Blue is primo pop.
It’s got the melodies and emotional punch.
He was followed by The Hummingbird Syndicate which is Jon
Macey’s latest band. Jon’s punk history goes back to the
beginning and, for those that don’t know, he wrote the original Boston
Groupie News #1 back in 1974. That story is told in our
Jon Macey Interview.
Jon has a deep well of influences and they color every song. Nothing is quite
as straight forward as they seem on the surface as the band plays a pop/country
mix. Maybe that’s why they call their album Pop Tricks. It was
fun to catch the references to 60s groups in the lyrics and the musical quotes
that refer to them at other times.
It all goes down smooth with Jon and Lynn Shipley singing
and the top level playing of the group. Ex Scruffy the Cat member Randall
Lee Gibson was on drums, you can’t get better than Randall playing
this sort of music.
They played a lot from the Pop Tricks album including “Romance”
and the standout “Sometimes It Just Gets This Way”. Then they threw
in a pop gem for David Bash by covering Prince’s “When You Were
At the IPO each band gets a half hour. Talking beforehand, Kid
Gulliver said that they were going to make every minute count,
and they did. They were obviously focused and the music had an extra
punch to it. We would say it was the best set we’ve ever seen
them do. They have new songs ready to record but the set was comprised
of the older material.
They played "I Like Your Hair", "I Want to be a Rock
Star". This was a night rich with serious song writers and the
Kid Gulliver set of songs was right on par.
Kris Rodgers & the Dirty Gems
Kris Rodgers & the Dirty Gems have talent coming out of
every pore. Kris’ piano playing is exceptional, he aims for the classic
rock era. His own songs fit right in with that. He played Pink Floyd’s
“Have a Cigar” which was impressive but doing a long cover tune
in this situation was a misstep, it seemed to us. That was time for some his
Next Crunchtime did what Kid Gulliver accomplished
which was to put in a snappy revved up set. Their songs are short and
punky with some ear snagging catch phrases. “Outsourced”
feeds off the outrage of that situation. Video of that song is above.
They hit all the songs we've come to love: “Retro Girl”,
“Stick It To The Man”, “Smart Girls”. You can
find them on their Bandcamp
page. Crunchtime have been gigging regularly and have more gigs
ahead. Check our listing (below) to see them in the future.
We knew we were going to stay the whole night because 1.4.5.
were playing last. They had energy just bubbling over as they took the stage.
They couldn’t wait to play. When they started it was like they were uncaged.
Paul Armstrong thinks you’re crazy if you don’t
love rock and roll. He and the band make a good case for that with a dirty Johnny
Thunders like sound. They ended with “God Save the Queen” which
was a welcome going back to the time and song that started so much. They did
“Use Ya Blinkah” that makes fun at Boston stereotypes but Paul puts
in some real invective into it. This guy gets pissed.
We used to see 1.4.5. back in the early eighties but we think
this version would blow them away. Paul said that the current revival of the
group had to do with their first show at the IPO. Give David Bash
another kudo for that.
This six band line up showed the quality of Bash’s curating.
He has good taste and gets the best pop rock bands around. Then there was one
more night on Saturday left which would include Tiger Bomb
and a reunion of The Brigands.
But Saturday we ended up at the Midway to catch some old faves and one oddity.
We don’t think Rodentt (yes two t’s) would
mind being called an oddity at all. They used to play the Midway in
the 90s. They play the worst pabulum from days gone by. We’re
talking “Volare”, “Tiny Bubbles”, "Dust
in the Wind", "King of the Road" (video Below), “Goldfinger”,
“Nights in White Satin” and the song they described as the
worst of all time “Little Green Apples” – no argument
But they don’t just play them. They play them like they are a drunken
wedding band from 1970. The horns went slightly off key and the keyboards missed
notes. The trombone slide was used to great effect. The singer had Louis Anderson’s
good looks and Dean Martin’s demeanor. His singing was half-hearted even
when trying to be grandiose.
The songs seemed to have no will to live. They stumbled along and then fell
in the gutter rather than ending. It was all an obvious put on and the band
was filled with excellent players. Having them play a real wedding would be
the ultimate joke.
It seemed like a reward to get to the Triple Thick set. There’s
so much wrong in the world now but we can put up with it as long as we have
Triple Thick. They give us the garage punk we need. Even though they
went through the Shiny Beasts configuration they were still
Triple Thick to us.
There’s a lot of people who know their garage rock history but only a
few like Mitch who can also play it. So much of what he knows
filters into the songs. We loved seeing Henry up front singing
and shaking those maracas. Greg on guitar was a perfect match
up with Mitch where he provided the gritty leads that fit the songs.
Then it was Classic Ruins chance to show what has made them
one of the most enduring punk bands on the scene.
Frank Rowe did his wry patter. He introduces a song as their
“latest release on Ace of Hearts records”. The ‘latest’
means 1980s. Carl Biancucci's playing is always a mind bender.
No matter how many times we’ve heard him play it still astounds. Dave
on drums was having more fun than any drummer should and when he’s
having fun then we are.
They played about half covers which was a bit high for them: “Bad
Boy”. “Tales of Brave Uylssis”, "I Got a Woman",
“”Please, Please Me”, “Highway 61” and
“Lights Out”. Then it was those songs that are part of Boston’s
punk history: ” I Can't Spell Romance”, "Heart Attack",
"Labatts", “Nyquil Stinger” and “1+1<2”.
The club was on the full side for this show. Rodentt put everyone
in a good mood which made another nice early evening show at the Midway.
Click Here for more band photos.
And in other news....
Well it's getting close to December ....Powerslut says they will play their
new Christmas song on November 23 show at Once. The song? “Everything
is Closed on Christmas (Except My Legs)”
Mark you calendar for:
Wednesday Nov 20 - Riche Parsons on WERS 88.9 He will play
live on the air at 9 pm
Saturday November 23 - do you like The Monsieurs??
or Andy California?? are you titillated by Andy MacBain's
antics on stage?? well check out Tunnel of Love cause that's
where it all started my friends... Tunnel of Love etc at Hardcore Stadium Cambridge
(more nelow in gig listings)
Nov 30 - saturday- Mark Lind and the Unloved at Great Scott.
Bikini Kill are playing the Wang Theater on May 14, 2020.
We didn’t know they were at that level. Good for them!! Tix.
Saturday January 11- Lyres (record release party) Middle East
Up -early show at 6:30.
Alternative Christmas shopping....there's
a TON of markets happening this year with offerings from local artisans &
businesses ...support your local non corporate people!!!!......
Sunday November 17 - Boston
Women's Holiday Market - Warehouse XI - Sanborne Crt Somerville (right
next to the Jungle) FB
Sat & Sun November 23 & 24
- Brookline Arts Center Artist Marketplace Local Artists vend their wares.....FB
Saturday Nov. 30 - Etsy
Makers of Boston at Bow Market Union Sq Somerville. 9AM-5PM FB
Saturday Nov. 30 - SoWa
Small Business Saturday Harrison Ave 11AM- 4PM FB
Sat & Sun Dec 7 & 8 -
Stompbox Pedal Party and Vintage clothing SALE! at 40 South
St JP - All clothes 20% off - treats & drinks too!! FB
Sunday December 8 - Brain
Market Flea at the Cambridge Community Center - 12 -6PM FB
Sunday December 8
- Holiday Buzz Markets, 2 floors and over 40 vendors
each! Come check out local folks with handmade, craft, vintage and fine art @
Once Somerville - starts at 11AM -
Friday December 13 - Union Square
Holiday Market - Warehouse XI @ 6Pm - FB
Saturday Dec. 14 - Boston
Hassle Xmas Flea - 12-6PM Elks Lodge Bishop Allen Dr Central Sq Cambridge
Saturday Dec. 14 - JP
Holiday Flea 2019 - First Church in Jamaica Plain Unitarian Universalist,
6 Eliot St, FB
Dec 12-15 (Thurs - Sunday) Allston-Brighton
Winter Market FB
Saturday Dec. 14 - Cambridge Holiday
Market - 11Am- 5PM @ Saint Paul AME Church
Bishop Allen Dr Cambridge FB
Sunday December 22 - Holiday
Buzz Markets, 2 floors and over 40 vendors each! Come check out local
folks with handmade, craft, vintage and fine art @ Once Somerville - starts
at 11AM - FB page
Here's some good shows coming up this week.....
November 20 (Wednesday) Randy Black
& The Heathcroppers Plough & Stars Residency 6-8 pm
November 20 (Wednesday) Richie
Parsons on WERS 88.9 will play live on the air at 9 pm FB
November 21 (Thursday) Robert Gordon
with special guest Chris Spedding and Diablogato
November 22 (Friday) Hambone Skinny,
Justine and the Unclean, A Bunch of Jerks, Lily Black at O'Brien's
November 23 (Saturday) A Crash
Course For The Ravers featuring A Bunch Of Jerks 1-4PM
November 23 (Saturday) Tunnel of
Love, Nice Guys, Feminine Aggression, Song Birds, Swettes at Hardcore
Stadium Bishop Allenm Dr Central Sq Cambridge FB
November 23 (Saturday) Zip-Tie
Handcuffs, Real Beaut, Baabes, Heavy Hands at O'Brien's
November 23 (Saturday) The Knock
Ups, blindspot, Lonely Leesa & The Lost Cowboys at Sally O'Brien's
November 23 (Saturday) C.O.B, Watching
It Burn, Duck & Cover, The Von Traps at Maggy's Lounge Quincy
November 23 (Saturday) "Love The Bands"
@ ONCE Featuring: Smitty E. Smitty & The Feztones, PowerSlut, Corner
Soul, The Rupert Selection - Doors: 8:30PM, Music 9PM
November 23 (Saturday) Gear up for the
holidays with Boston Debut of 'U-EY at the BUOY' & 'EX
AVENUE' at The Squealing Pig - music starts at 10pm, come hang out
page for address etc.
November 24 (Sunday) Johnny Cab,
Kermit's Finger, The Negans, Baabes, Bernie's Garage at The Midway
And further out there is.....
November 25 (Monday) Weaklings,
Cook Bag, SkyTigers at Charlie's Kitchen
November 30 (Saturday) Mark Lind
& The Unloved with Bryan McPherson and M.
Kane & The Morning Afters at Great Scott. FB
November 30 (Saturday) State of
the Union and Jowwow at Key West, Free Show North
December 4 (Wednesday) Thurston
Moore Group at Once
December 7 (Saturday) Triple B Records
presents: American Hardcore Fest 2019 with Magnitude,
Wild Side, One Step Closer, Restraining Order, Method of Doubt, Anxious, Big
Mack, Field Agent- All Ages, $25Advance / $30Day of Show, the Middle
East *NOTE* 12:00PM Doors- this is an early show!! FB
December 7 (Saturday) The Scrooges,
Brix'n Mortar, NICE GUYS, The Von Traps at ONCE Ballroom FB
December 7 (Saturday) 3rd Annual Tunes
for Tots Benefit with Loser's Circle, The Bad Reminders, and
more! at The Midway - a matinee show 3-7PM
December 13 (Friday) Merry Friday the
13th Rockin' Bob Punk Band at Koto Salem
December 13 (Friday) Stop Calling
Me Frank, The Dirty Truckers, Ex-Avenue, The Grommets at The Midway
December 14 (Saturday) Baabes,
The Von Traps, The Hi-End, The Stigmatics at the Midway Matinee Show
December 15 (Sunday) Thrash N
Bang's 8th Annual Punk Pizza Party! with The Neighborhood Shit,
Fast Times, The Ratz, The Hangovers at The Midway 3PM matinee - ony
$5!!! and free pizza.
December 16 (Monday)
We Are Space Horses, The Zygote Theory, Rawstrum, Kevin Madden Band
at The Jungle
December 18 (Wednesday) Randy
Black & The Heathcroppers Plough & Stars Residency 6-8 pm
December 20 (Friday)
Instamatics, Radium Girls, Thee Fightin' Fish, Johnny No Graves at
December 21 (Saturday) MOTO, The
Thigh Scrapers, The Thirsty Pirates (NYC) , The Montgomerys
at The Midway for a Matinee Show 3-7:30PM
December 21 (Saturday) A Rum Bar Holiday
Spectacular with Jay Allen & the Archcriminals, A Bunch of Jerks,
Hambone Skinny, and The Black Souls at The Midway
December 21 (Saturday) Mother
Iron Horse, Tied to a Bear, Von Traps, Skytigers at Opus in Sale
December 30 (Monday) The Last Rebuilder
New Year’s Eve Party at Charlie's Kitchen with Save Ends,
Sorry and 1 special guest to be announced
January 4 (Saturday) Handsome,
Four Point Restraints, T and the Wrecks, Micah Howeson at The Jungle
January 10 (Friday) Nomad Stones,
Labor Hex, Chrome Over Brass at Opus Underground Salem
January 10 (Friday) The Mercy
Case, Bystander, blindspot, Foxes at Koto Salem
January 11 (Saturday) Lyres (record
release party) Middle East Up -early show at 6:30.
January 11 (Saturday) WhistleStop
Rock Festival at Askew in Providence- this is the first Whistle Stop
- Featuring: Heather Rose In Clover, The Knock Ups, The Chelsea Curve,
PowerSlut, Kid Gulliver, The Cold Expectations, Justine and the Unclean
January 15 (Wednesday) Randy Black
& The Heathcroppers Plough & Stars Residency 6-8 pm
January 18 (Saturday) Triple Thick,
Crunchtime, 1.4.5., Butterscott at The Midway 3-7PM matinee
January 18 (Saturday) Barrence
Whitfield & The Savages, Muck and the Mires at The Middle East
page and tickets
January 19 (Sunday) Stoploss, Secret
Spirit, F.U.’s, more TBA at The Thirsty First Tavern Lowell FB
February 1 (Saturday) Stop Calling
Me Frank,Greg Allen's Fringe Religion,Tsunami of Sound
at The Square Root Roslindale
February 16 (Sunday) Stop Calling
Me Frank, State of the Union, The New Frustrations, The Steamies at
The Midway - matinee 3-7PM
March 28 (Saturday) The Zulus at The Paradise
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Frank Rowe - Classic Ruins
Mike Stewart working it.