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A Town Called Hypocrisy

tattoo.JPGThrough 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.


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Reader Comments (11)

The rock clubs were and always should be the safe haven for artists. It is their only true outlet for their pure creativity. By the time I was finished with your post the rage inside me was boiling so bad I went and spent 40 minutes on a treadmill.
February 18, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHairball John
Hi Allyson,
I know the club you are talking about. Its a 45 minute drive away from me. It is truly appalling that they would try to censor any band.

I am not very fond of the management of this place. They don't know how to schedule a show. I ended up missing the House of Lords/ Bang Tango show because of those nitwits.

They just opened up a new club, Rhino's Live, that is supposed to be much bigger and are booking some of the bigger acts. Lets hope they do a better job in the new club.

Bullet Boys, Ron Keel, and Quiet Riot are all coming to the new club in the next few weeks. Can you imagine a bar manager telling Kevin Dubrow what to do?

I would love to be there to see that reaction. That is a powder keg waiting to happen.

February 19, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHard Rock Hideout
It's Heather here, and I would like to share with readers the response I got from the club manager. I reached my boiling point while listening to a rap song with filthy lyrics and watching people grope each other on the dance floor. I saw the manager nearby, so I asked him why he chose to play such music in his club, afer censoring VOJ.

First, he became defensive and told me that as soon as he had noticed the lyrics of the song, he had turned it off. When I challenged him on this, he changed his tune. He then became defensive and told me that I didn't know what he'd told the band and I shouldn't make assumptions. I reminded him that Lizzy Devine had been pretty outspoken onstage about the change of policy. The manager then told me there had been a miscommunication. He claims that he told the bands that they couldn't curse BETWEEN songs, but if they were in the lyrics, that was ok. He made no comment on the "no shirt" rule.

I told him that I felt, as a manager, he had made several poor decisions throughout the night. First, don't book rock bands unless you know something about their act. VOJ should not have shocked him. Second, set the rules ahead of time. Don't interrupt a band in the middle of their set. And finally, the rules should be the same for the bands, as well as the DJ. The patrons came to see the live acts. Don't censor your money makers and then do a 360 when the DJ takes over. I told him that he had probably lost several customers because of the events of the night. I also pointed out that there were members of several local bands in the crowd who had been on their cell phones spreading the word, so it might not be so easy to book talent in the future.

In the end, the manager was very apologetic and told me he had called his boss and suggested he call VOJ's management to apologize and explain the so-called "miscommunication". I hope someone does apologize, not just to VOJ, but to the other bands too. When a club books you, they should accept you for what you are. If you don't want shirtless musicians and foul language.. don't book a group of rockers!!
February 19, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHeather (Glam Seeker)
Amen Heather! Most rock fans are accustomed to shirtless rockers throwing a few F Bombs out there. If they want to book squeaky clean acts, maybe they need to book Christian rock bands, or better yet pop acts.

It definitely is uncalled for and major mismanagement by Rhino's. I think I will go to the Quiet Riot show just to see the fireworks. Kevin Dubrow wont tolerate that nonsense.

February 19, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHardRockHideout
They do rule, and the censorship was bullshit. The club is lame. Alsways has been and alwys will be. the only reason we go there is to see the cool bands theybring in here or there.
P.S. Dirty hair? I wash it every day thank you very much.
The Dropoutz Played Rhinos in Jan with Bang Tango ...and the promoter also told us to not curse cause i guess there is a law in Cincinnati That if there is Cursing onstage during any performance that there is fines that will be giving ...which in my opinion is SHIT .... but the Vains of Jenna Boys Kick ass ... we had the pleasure of sharing the stage with them at Bams wedding party ... great bunch of guys .... and wicked Sins Guys are a class act too .... remember that name ...cause they are going places
February 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMikki Twist
There are also fines for failing to enforce the Ohio smoking ban. Interesting that Rhinos chooses to follow some rules while ignoring others.
February 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHeather
I never heard of the no cussing rule on stage in Cincinnati. That is a new one. Cincinnati has always been a conservative town, but that may require a little bit of research on my part. I think some is full of caca.

Live acts cuss on stage every where else in this town. I guess someone at Rhino's has virgin ears.

February 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterHard Rock Hideout
Houston has no such cursing laws nor nonsmoking in the clubs. We love to see our rockers get as naked as humanly possible. VOJ put on a hell of a show here last month, and I anxiously await another. My first impression of the guys weren't very nice, I admit. But now that I've seen how hard they rock, and the kick ass, shirtless show was worth it. I'd pay to see them again. So if you're reading this Lizzy, we love you here. With all your foul mouthed glory, c'mon back!!
February 22, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterSasssysab
wow, unbelievable! well i'm glad something was initially said from the get-go. kudos to you two ladies standing up for voj! this manager trying to justify [basically] censoring rock, however, praising music who [most of the time] sing about busting a cap in your ass and/or pimpin hoes. what gives? i'm glad i ran into this page via lizzy devine. in response to the prev post (sassysab) AMEN...the guys know....TEXXXAS loves them. "for those about to rock, we salute you!" now let's [...] rock'n'roll! good job ladies! ~jeni.
March 11, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJENITAL956
That Drug Store Valentine Dude is odd. We call him that Justin Hawkins Dude. Thick eyeliner and a growing gut lol.
June 23, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterpeachesatrocity

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