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It was a dark and rainy day in Novemeber, and we was heading out to see The Blue Meanies, Weston, and Middlefinger. Due to the weather and van trouble Weston was running late. We showed up early to interview Weston so we got to sit through sound check to wait for them to show. We watched Middlefinger warm up and get ready to start the show. They sounded great even during warm up. At 8:30 the show was ready to begin.
The first band up was Middlefinger. They were absolutely insane. They are one of the few bands I've seen in a long time that were able to take ska and do something new with it. They've been around in the local scene for a while, but their blend of fast punk, ska, and metal make for an interesting evening. They tore though a 30 minute set like no one has ever seen. I was impressed at the energy of the band and the speed at which they pulled off some pretty complex riffs. Guitarist Jason Davis showed a great deal of versatility performing in this band. I had seen him play guitar for 30footFALL and play bass for The Suspect but his true shining moments come with this band. His brother, Brian Davis(also of 30footFALL), shows why he was voted best drummer in Houston by keeping everything tight and together. Lead singer Matt Kelly is a sight to behold. He's totally off the wall. During the set he sang while drinking beer, sprayed beer everywhere, and ripped his shirt off Hulk Hogan style. Their set was awesome from start to finish and a joy for all who showed up for it.
Right from the van to the stage came Weston. With no time to catch their breath, Weston took the stage and got ready to put on a great set. Before they started lead vocalist/guitarist James Snyder stated "We just got here and need a second to catch our breath, so here's a slow love song." With that they began. It was interesting to see them this time. The last time I saw them was in 1996 and since then they've added a keyboard player which was really rad. After the first song it was "time for some rock" and they went into some of the older stuff. The highlight of the set for me was "I Just Quit Rock n' Roll". It was a much stronger song live and rocked so hard. The keyboard in it was a great compliment to the sound. "Liz Phair" was a strong song too. It was really funny. Weston came out a put on a great set with no time to get prepared which was impressive. Snyder got everyone into it at the end as he sang and swung his guitar around. Weston put on a great performance.
Finally it was time for the headliners, The Blue Meanies. They put on a great show. They opened with the guitar driven "Camaro Man" which got everyone's heart racing. Billy Spunke was in fine form looking as sinister as ever on the stage. They plaed songs from all their albums which I was happy about. "I'm A Have Not" was awesome. The band's energy level was through the roof on that song. The highlight song of the evening was "Pave The World" which was dedicate to this Tuesday's presidential race. Spunke is down right sinister during this song. He was up on his box with a cigarette he got from someone in the crowd and was leading the band. He looked like a proud dictator as everyone chanted "Pave, Pave, Pave The World!" over and over again. The set moved on with "Chemicals" which is one of the best songs off the new album. The final song of the night was "Smash The Magnivox" which was a great closer. The band kept the energy the entire set, and made sure everyone was totally into the music. The Blue Meanies have a great deal of audience friendly songs that keeps the energy high and the message going.
Samuel Barker is Senior Editor. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.