Through a snowstorm and ice covered roads, I set off on a search of glam. Last night, my husband and Heather (remember, she's my co-conspirator in bringing back glam) headed south to Cincinnati to scope out a new club and enjoy some good music.
As always, things fall apart.
Rhinos East is a pretty nice club, and we were all pleased to find they served a full menu. The music started 2 hours later than advertised and Vains of Jenna performed first.
There were literally eight people on the dance floor watching my Swedish rockers and that included me and Heather. After one song, the manager went on stage and told Lizzy Devine to put his shirt on and stop cursing.
Things pretty much went downhill from there.
As you can imagine, old Lizzy was mad and the band played an abbreviated set. They said they felt "misplaced" and to go to another club to see a real VOJ show. The songs they did play were very good, but once again I didn't hear "Lit Up/Let Down."
Will I ever hear this song live?
My boys tried to rally the small crowd, but they were sad and you could tell. No matter what, they were still my favorite band of the night and I still think they have major potential to become famously huge. Once again, they looked too thin and exhausted. Lizzy apologized for his cold and tried to get everyone on their feet. They plugged their merchandise and said they were broke.
A small bevy of fans gathered to peruse the VOJ merchandise. Heather and I helped out the broke boys and each purchased an autographed CD. While waiting for our signatures, Heather and I talked to guitarist Nicki Kin. We told him were sorry the band was mistreated and censored. He laughed and made a comment I won't repeat.
A highlight on the evening was the great picture Heather and I had taken with the very friendly Jacki Stone. He really pounds on the drums and he has a lot of heart and talent. I figure him to be a driving force behind the band.
Now comes the hypocrisy part:
After VOJ left the stage, not allowed to curse or take off their shirts, the DJ threw on some rap music filled with slanderous vocabulary. During the canned commercial garbage, all the people who were too good to watch a real rock band up close and personal flooded the dance floor, gyrating and doing other inappropriate moves.
Why is it ok for men and women to literally be on top of another in public, but Lizzy Devine can't perform without a shirt?
After a painful while of watching the college-age club scene shake their moneymakers, Pennsylvania based Wicked Sins took over the stage.
As soon as they started, the dance floor emptied save for one, half dressed inebriated woman.
Wicked Sins were ok, and they looked very glam. They too had to check their language but looked grateful for the gig so they didn't complain.
Their set was short, and during the interim while waiting for Hookers n' Blow we had to endure more canned rap music and watch people attempt to dance.
Hookers n' Blow took the stage way after midnight, and by this time most of the crowd was good and drunk. See, when Americans get drunk, they get both rude and stupid. One woman sat on my husband's coat and refused to move. Another kept bumping into Heather. Since I gave everyone a death glare, people left me alone.
Finally, my boy Dizzy Reed got behind the keyboard and started to sing. Hookers n' Blow played a lot of Guns n' Roses standards like "Don't Cry," "Sweet Child O' Mine" and "Sympathy for the Devil."
Hookers n' Blow were very good and also censored. They were hot and sweaty and complained about the shirt rule. They also laughed and used words like "malarkey" and "gosh darn" instead of the more vitriolic "BLEEP!" that Lizzy Devine had shouted just a few hours earlier.
It was fun watching a current member of GnR perform and I wish now I would have grabbed him and asked about the fate of the much anticipated Chinese Democracy.
Quiet Riot guitarist Alex Grossi is very talented and it was fun to watch him perform. W.A.S.P. bassist Mike Duda seemed happy to be along for the ride, but no one was more jolly than White Lion drummer Troy Patrick Farrell.
A few notes of absurdity:
The lead singer of Drugstore Valentine surfaced at the show. You might remember I reviewed them after last month's VOJ Sudsy Malones show. His look was more reserved, but his eyeliner still thick and his hair still dirty. When VOJ were reprimanded while on stage, he screamed "this place is lame!" He also smiled at me and Heather all evening.
A member of the Vladimirs hovered near the stage all night, looking at the gyrating rap dancers in disgust. I have a new found respect for the members of the band but I still don't like their music.
Finally at her wits end, Heather approached the manager about the hypocrisy of censoring the rock bands. He trembled in fear, apologized, swore he would call VOJ to apologize and then bought her a drink.
I hope they rethink censoring live acts in the future.