May 2, 2005 - Milestone's - Rochester, NY
The Reverend Horton Heat is one of my favorite bands and I see them whenever and wherever I can. The show at Milestone's in Rochester, NY was no exception. Add the fact that the two opening acts were The Supersuckers, (one of my other favorite bands), and New York Hardcore legends Murphy's Law and you have a show that would rival any line-up in any club in America. This tour was the first time that The Reverend Horton Heat had toured with The Supersuckers in a decade. There was no way in Hell I was going to miss this show.
Accompanying me on this outing was my former girlfriend Chrissy Munari, who is still one of my very BEST friends. I had turned her on to The Supersuckers when we were together, and they quickly became one of her favorite bands as well. As a matter of fact, our first official date was a trip to Albany, NY to see The Supersuckers play at Valentine's. So, when it came time to decide who was going with me to see this show, she was naturally my first choice.
The trip to the show was an uneventful forty minute drive and we arrived early. That turned out to be a good thing, because we got a little bit lost for a few minutes. It just so happened that the directions I got off the Internet were slightly off due to the fact that recent road construction had changed the traffic patterns in the area. After finding the club, we located a parking lot next door, puffed a quick one, and made sure I had all my questions and equipment ready. With all in order and feeling fine, we headed into Milestone's.
As we entered the door, the first person we saw was Ron "Rontrose" Heathman, guitar player for The Supersuckers. He saw us walk in and came over to us. Ron said hi to us by name and shook our hands. He said it was good to see us again. Both Chrissy and I were very impressed with the fact that he remembered our names. We chatted for a while and Ron asked if I was interviewing him. I told him I was interviewing their singer Eddie Spaghetti. After a few minutes we decided to go out for a cigarette and Ron went backstage to do whatever he had to do.
Chrissy and I stepped out for a smoke and it began to rain lightly, so we headed back in. When we walked back inside, we were surprised to see Jimbo Wallace, bass player for the Reverend Horton Heat. He was just standing around, so I walked over to say hi. We talked about a few shows that I had seen Reverend Horton Heat play, then Chrissy and I snapped photos with him. He had things to do, so we thanked him and he took off.
As we stood around waiting we began to wonder why none of the guys from Murphy's Law were there. They were very late getting there for the load-in.
I was supposed to do an interview with frontman Jimmy Gestapo, but no one at the club had any idea where they were. I had interviewed Jimmy before at the Bridge Street Music Hall in Syracuse on the night the second Gulf War began. Jimmy was hammered on that night and was rambling and rather incoherent, but I had posted the interview anyway. When I had requested to do the interview for this show, Jimmy himself had gotten back to me and asked if I would take down the old drunk interview and we could do another one. So, I agreed to take it down to be replaced with the new one. But, it was beginning to look like they weren't going to show up.
So, once again, Chrissy and I went outside for a cigarette under the overhang of the roof. The rain had slowed down to a light mist and a few people were starting to arrive for the show. By the time Chrissy and I went back into Milestone's, there were about twenty-five fans in the club. We were making our way towards the back room to find out when I would be interviewing Eddie,
when Jimmy Gestapo appeared in the hallway. He saw me and called out my name. I walked over and Jimmy gave me a big hug and told me he loved me and what I do. He said he wished more people would do something like it. (I am glad more people don't…LOL)

Click Here for Murphy's Law Photos & Interview
He said we were still on for the interview, but because they were late, it would have to wait until after their set. I told him that it would be fine. So, with that taken care of, Jimmy went to help load gear onto the stage.
We found Eddie and asked when he wanted to do the interview and he said after the show would be the best time for him. That worked out fine for me. With everything in order and our time slots set-up, it was time to kick back have a few beers and enjoy the show. Soon the lights dimmed and Murphy's Law took the stage.
For many rebellious kids, experiencing a Murphy's Law show has been a rite of passage. The guys in Murphy's Law always put on more than a live show. Their performances are big parties where everyone's invited. A mainstay of the NYC scene for years, extensive touring has secured Murphy's Law as a perennial favorite of hardcore fans.
Murphy's Law originally came out of New York City's mid-'80s hardcore scene, and formed in Astoria, Queens. They are credited as one of the bands that defined the Hardcore genre. Their sound was a cross between skate punk and metal. Vocalist Jimmy Gestapo has been the only consistent member of the band since its beginning. It seems that the other members of the band go through a constant revolving door. The group's self-titled debut, which was released on Profile Records in 1986, contained songs based on the subjects of boredom, alienation, weed, beer, etc. but the songs were definitely there. Murphy's Law improved even more with their second album, 1989's Back with a Bong! The band was on Combat Records for 1991's The Best of Times, but recorded little during the early '90s. In 1995, Murphy's Law came back with an EP and the full-length Dedication in 1996. The Best of Times/Good for Now EP came out in 2000. The crowd at Milestone's was heavily weighted on the side of the Psychobilly genre, but they took in the set by Murphy's Law quite well. Jimmy G was obviously having a blast as he performed. One hand held a microphone and the other a bottle of Jagermeister. Between songs (and whenever he had time during a guitar solo) Jimmy would take a pull from the bottle of Jager and pass it around to the guys in the crowd. Soon the bottle was empty and the beers started coming out. The music cranked and the booze flowed as Murphy's Law ripped through their short set. The entire performance lasted about 30-35 minutes, but from that short performance it was easy to see why Murphy's Law is so well respected. The solid songs with their sing-a-long choruses were fun to listen to and join in. The band finished and loaded their gear off the stage.
I headed out to the back to do my interview. When I got to the back, Jimmy was doing an interview with a puppet called PissPot the Rabbit for an underground music TV show. It was really comical seeing one of the most respected guys in Hardcore talking to a silly smoking rabbit. Even Jimmy G thought it was humorous.
I waited politely and when Jimmy was done with PissPot the Rabbit, I did my interview with him. After the interview we posed for a few photos and Jimmy signed copies of the questions for me. (Unfortunately someone stole the envelope with the autographed stuff and I have nothing to give away as prizes. D'oh!)
I thanked Jimmy for everything and went inside to shoot photos of The Supersuckers.
The Supersuckers were formed in Tucson, AZ, in 1988 by high-school friends Eddie Spaghetti (born Edward Carlyle Daly III, bass, vocals), Ron "Rontrose" Heathman (guitar), Dan "Thunder" Bolton (guitar), Dancing Eagle (born Dan Seigal, drums), and Eric Martin (lead vocals). After playing the local scene for about a year under the name the Black Supersuckers (taken from a pornographic novel), the band moved to Seattle,WA in search of a climate more conducive to leather jackets. Martin left the band not long after, and Eddie Spaghetti took his place on lead vocals. The Supersuckers have a long and interesting history with many albums on different labels. After years of jumping from one label to another the band formed its own label called MidFi Records in 2002, and inaugurated it with a live document of their country phase, Must've Been Live. A new, hard-rocking studio album: Motherfuckers Be Trippin', followed in 2003. The band's latest release is a collection of singles sides and non-album material entitled: Devil's Food. As I have stated in the past The Supersuckers are one of my ALL-TIME favorite bands. The play balls out Rock and Roll with warped and twisted lyrics that don't take themselves too seriously. They are like the ultimate party band. Their songs are raucous, over-the-top celebrations of all the attendant evils of rock & roll: sex, booze, drugs, Satan, and whatever other vices the band could think of, all glorified with tongue planted firmly in cheek. "It's A Good Night for My Drinking" and "Born With A Tail" are prime examples. The band even released a greatest hits collection titled: How the Supersuckers Became the Greatest Rock and Roll Band in the World. That takes serious balls. And The Supersuckers have them.

Click Here for Supersuckers Photos & Interview

Their style of Rock & Roll with hints of punk, country, Rock-A-Billy, and grunge is unique. There have been imitators, but nothing can compare. But the full sound of the band was not to be had on this evening. Guitarist Dan "Thunder" Bolton was absent from the show to take some much needed time off. The pressure of touring and being on the road was causing serious problems which needed to be addressed before they got worse. Dan will be back, but not until next tour. So, The Supersuckers performed as a trio. But don't be mistaken, they still rocked the house in the way that only The Supersuckers can do.
One of the most notable things about The Supersuckers is their dialogue with the crowd. Eddie Spaghetti talks to the fans as if he were talking to old friends over a beer. I love bands that know it is the fans that make them who they are and act naturally. There was no Rock Star attitude in his speaking.
As the band blazed through fan favorites like "On the Couch," "Pretty Fucked Up," and "Santa Rita High" the crowd went crazy, singing along and dancing up a storm. After The Supersuckers finished their set, I went backstage and did my interview with Eddie Spaghetti. The Reverend Horton Heat was up next.

Click Here for Reverend Horton Heat Photos

The Reverend Horton Heat is perhaps the most popular Psychobilly artist of all time, really rivaled only by genre founders The Cramps. The Reverend (as both the three-man band and its guitar-playing frontman were known) built a strong cult following during the '90s through constant touring, manic showmanship, and a twisted sense of humor.
Most of the Reverend's lyrics were gonzo celebrations of sex, drugs, booze, and cars, and true to his name, his concerts often featured mock sermons in the style of a rural revivalist preacher.
Reverend Horton Heat - the man, not the band - was born James C. Heath in Corpus Christi, TX. Growing up, he played in rock cover bands, but was more influenced by Sun rockabilly, electric Chicago blues, and country mavericks like Junior Brown, Willie Nelson, and Merle Travis.
According to legend, he spent several years in a juvenile correction facility, and at 17 was supporting himself as a street musician and pool shark. According to the Reverend, the story was fabricated by Sub Pop to add color to his greaser image.
Craving the excitement of a rock & roll show, and seeking a more financially rewarding avenue to help with his child support payments, Heat revamped his sound and moved into rock and punk venues. In 1989, he added bassist Jimbo Wallace to his band, and drummer Patrick "Taz" Bentley soon completed the lineup. Reverend Horton Heat was a big hit around the area, and soon began touring extensively all around the country. They soon landed a deal with indie label Sub Pop. In 1991,the band issued their debut album, Smoke 'Em If You Got 'Em.

The album featured fan favorites like "Eat Steak," "Marijuana," "Bad Reputation," and "Love Whip." The band kept building its audience through steady touring, and got considerable media attention for its 1993 sophomore effort, The Full Custom Gospel Sounds of the Reverend Horton Heat. Produced by the Butthole Surfers' Gibby Haynes, it spawned a minor MTV hit in "Wiggle Stick," and also included Heat staples "400 Bucks" and "Bales of Cocaine." Having amassed a significant underground following, Horton Heat signed a major-label deal with Interscope in 1994, and debuted that year with a joint release between Interscope and Sub Pop, Liquor in the Front (subtitled "Poker in the Rear" for anyone who missed the first double-entendre). This time around, Heat had an even unlikelier producer in Ministry's Al Jourgensen. Bentley left the band and was replaced by Scott "Chernobyl" Churilla.
Horton Heat returned in 1996 with It's Martini Time, which featured several nods to the swing and lounge revival scenes emerging around that time. The title track became a minor hit, and the album became their first to chart in the Top 200. Also in 1996, Reverend Horton Heat made a appearance on the acclaimed drama Homicide: Life on the Street. The following year, the entire band appeared on The Drew Carey Show.
1998 brought the band's final major-label album, Space Heater. In the wake of their exit, from Interscope Records, Sub Pop released a 24-song best-of collection titled: Holy Roller, in 1999, covering their entire output up to that point.
Undaunted, they continued to tour, and in 2000 recorded the more straightforward rockabilly album Spend a Night in the Box for Time Bomb, this time with a different Butthole Surfer, Paul Leary, producing. The Reverend next surfaced on Artemis Records with 2002's Lucky 7, his hardest-edged album in quite some time. Its single, "Like a Rocket," was selected as the theme song for that year's Daytona 500 race. Buoyed by the publicity, Heat signed a new deal with Yep Roc in 2003. His first album for the label, Revival, appeared the following year.
Keeping with the band's history of nearly constant touring, the Reverend Horton Heat brought their Rockabilly Revival to Milestone's in Rochester to deliver their message of Sex, Drugs, and Rock & Roll. Jimbo Wallace performed in his usual style, standing upon his big upright bass while the Reverend Horton Heat played his big Gretch guitar as the band went through their setlist of classics such as "Big Red Rocket of Love," "Baddest of the Bad," and "Cruisin' for a Bruisin'." The crowd went wild and showed their appreciation.

Reverend Horton Heat

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