Wednesday, 6 January 2010

661 DINOSAUR JR., London Kentish Town Forum, Wednesday 8 June 2005

I'm still rocking in a retro style - this time it's off to see the reformation of one of the founding members of the pre-grunge American noise rock club, following in the footsteps of the Pixies by getting the original line-up back together. J Mascis, Lou Barlow and Murph... funny how time - and a potful of cash - heals all rifts!

Rachel didn't fancy the noise so I hit the road with Mascis devotee Tim and Penny. Hit trouble on the M4, being diverted off to avoid a huge smash, so we parked up at 8.30, totally missing support Eugene Kelly in the process. D'oh! However, whilst heading off to the bank to get cash to "convert" my upstairs ticket to a downstairs one via a tout (had to be done, really...), we ran into Kevin and David from Seafood outside the Bull And Gate. Result!

Hit the venue at 1/4 to 9 and barely had time to get the drinks in and find a space, stage left by the speakers, before the band sauntered on at 9 with the house lights still on! Nevertheless, Dinosaur Jr., oddly cloistered around Murph's drums in the middle of the large stage, set to their task with unexpected vigour. J, white-maned and laconic, Lou looking almost muscular, and the bald workhorse Murph behind the drums. The set was drawn entirely from the first 3 original line-up albums, so no "The Wagon" (bah!), but an early, groovy "Raisans" drew praise and an ever-increasing moshpit.

Dinosaur Jr. were genre-defining in their amalgam of heavy rock and US college pop, and now rightly take their place among the true innovators and influences on today's rock scene. The brilliant set closer, "Freak Scene", which should/would have been a "Teen Spirit" sized crossover smash had J been a blond pretty boy like Kurt, was as thrilling, powerful and uplifting as ever, J belying his laid-back stance by really rocking out, drawing intricate riffs from his battered Fender.

The encore "Just Like Heaven" saw me hit the mad mosh for a frantic rendition of the old Cure number, a great way to end a titanic 1 1/4 hours of loud and hard rock! I grabbed 2 set-lists (including J's own, which I gave to Tim), then we chatted outside with the guys from Midway Still (purveyors of similar thrilling visceral noise) before hitting the road after another worthwhile trip to Ye Olde Londone Towne!

No comments:

Post a Comment