Saturday, March 15, 2003 @ 10:43 AM
Brand New Sin Rock Don Hill's
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“Now that’s a fuckin’ rock band!”
I found myself uttering these words out loud as the band wrapped up
their set and the lights came up.
I arrive at Don Hill’s to commence drinking and hold down fort at the bar
in the main room, next to the sexy chick bartender with black pigtails and a wool hat.
With no fanfare, save a giant Brand New Sin “pig” logo hung behind the drum kit-
all these big ugly guys with tats get onstage -- six guys who would not be out of place at any body shop in Jersey.
“It’s good to be fuckin’ back, New York!” growled singer Joe Altier as the band, all in black clothes, assembled. Flanked by Marshalls stacked two high, left and right of the drum riser, and band -- two members each to his left and right -- the menacing Altier, shaved head, goatee, sleeveless work shirt, and all five covered in tats -- and Syracuse, New York’s Finest got right down to business at Don Hill’s tonight, and brought out the same hard vibe that emanates from their self-titled debut.
If you don’t have the Brand New Sin CD, you don’t know what you’re
missing. If you like AC/DC, Motorhead, Lynyrd Skynyrd, COC, Pantera, Monster Magnet,
The Four Horsemen, or (to my mind) Junkyard -- then you would love this band.
Just a bunch of ugly, sweaty guys putting a lot of heart and grime into playing some great rock and roll. Get your whiskey out… and grab the CD. There’s just no describing this
band, and their music, live…but here’s how the night played out…
“You know who the fuck we are… this song’s called ‘Broken Soul’!”
The band is so heavy and, live, is actually BETTER than the CD -- Joe and 1-of-3 guitarists, “Slider,” share a nice harmony on the chorus of “Broken Soul” that isn’t captured on the record. Heavy, heavy, heavy.
Finished with that, Joe tells the crowd: “It’s good to be here in a room
full of friends and family… a lot of our girlfriends and wives are here.
We’re so glad they came down to see us… and keep our morale up,
if you know what I mean… this is a special night. A special night!”
(It turns out the evening is also a birthday party for the Now Or Never
record label “execs” -- one of whom is all of 26…)
“We got a lot of birthdays here tonight… and give it up for our new drummer --
‘Mr. Dean’… February 27th! (applause)
We got -- Kris Weichmann, this past Saturday, March 8th! (applause)
SLIDER! On the 16th of March! (applause, cheers, girl yelling)
And our boy! Where is he… Also March 16th. From Now Or Never [Records], give it up for… DUSTIN GOLDFARB! (applause, girl yelling...)
And also from our label… today’s his birthday… and he’s gonna get spanked!-- c’mon Frodo! YEAH! Let’s hear it for MATT BECKERMAN!” (applause - Beckerman takes the stage to hug singer, gets spanked a couple of times by someone in the front, leaves…) Yeah. Someone’s gonna fuck him in the ass, later, right? He needs it!
And me, my birthday is March 20th…I hate to be stuck around all these Pisces…
All right, enough of this shit! These are…”DESPERATE TIMES!”
Song finished, in comes “SPP.”
Then, a nod to the club fire in RI. Holding up a Budweiser…
“This is for the people up there… about a hundred people who loved
rock -- it could have been any fuckin’ one of us, going out to see a rock
band in a club… Raise a glass to those people -- get ‘em up! We’ll see ya on the other side! (Audience cheers) This one’s for them -- this is “Sad Wings.”
Song finished. Joe: “It’s fuckin’ ‘Judgement Day,’ folks…”
--Overheard at the bar: two girls, behind me, chattering loudly away about
the band. One girl says: “These guys are my rape-fantasy gang-bang!”--
Song finished. “This is a special night for us, lots of birthdays,
lotsa of friends and family here, and it’s great to back in New York City… so we got a couple of treats for you -- and this next song is part of the treat. It’s a new one… and it’s called, ‘Wasted’!” Good song, much in the style of the songs on the CD, nice chorus.
Then, song finished, chairs are brought up on the stage.
“We got passed over for a certain tour this summer, so we’re calling this tour ‘The OZ-Mess’ tour…
“I gotta sit my fat ass down. We’re only used to doing twenty-minute sets…
“All right…we’re going acoustic here- this next one is called ‘Shattered’!’
Then: “You’ve heard this song a bunch of times, but we wanted to bring it
to you a different way tonight. ‘My World’…”
“All right, New York City -- last one! ‘Did You?’!”
Almost too quickly, Brand New Sin is done.
Too bad. I can’t wait to see ‘em again…
People file into the next room, where the band is gathering, looking
very much ready to party with the people who are celebrating birthdays.
As I walk out of the club, I see the roadies breaking down the stage,
loading out gear. Someone yells, “Hey! Be careful with those amps-
we need ‘em…”
I shake my head, thinking, “Yeah, you do…”