Shock Antics!

"Hey, who's the sexy old blond?" Rebecca Schoenkopf, a.k.a. Commie Girl, asked me, nodding toward the stage. I told her it was Wally George, but I was lying. The Sexy Old Blond was really the Cramps' bass player, who wasn't sexy and whose wig was more pink than blond and who danced around the stage like a flower—if a flower could dance. Each Cramps member has a specific way of moving. Wally George dances like a flower. Guitar player Poison Ivy, who was wearing this bitty little dress that just barely grazed the top of her white, frilly underpants (which appeared to be stuffed with something), stalks the stage in a slow, sultry, deliberate way, which is probably all she can do in those high-heeled boots. And she glares at everyone in this way that is incredibly sexy and very cool and makes me wonder whether in the early days of the Cramps she had to deal with a bunch of well-wishers telling her she should smile and move around more and try to look like she's having fun up there.3 Snarly singer Lux Interior struts from the back of the stage to the front and then back and then front again. Sometimes he lunges forward, and sometimes he deep-throats the microphone. Also, he throws the microphone stand forward but holds on to the cord, and sometimes he wraps the cord around his neck. He was wearing some kind of non-breathing, shiny, rubbery outfit, in case you're wondering. As for the drummer, I don't know; I couldn't see him.

They opened with "Cramp Stomp" and then tore through a fairly long set of slow, snarly, inspired, groovy, bluesy hits with little patter in between songs. And despite the slow snarliness of it all, there was still a gaggle o' dickheads in the crowd who moshed. Every now and then, they'd lift one of their own into the air and then pass the human offering forward, where he'd fall, eventually, into the arms of the security guards, who would toss him to the side, where he'd pick himself up, do a lap, and then run back into the pit. All hell briefly broke loose around 10:50 p.m., when the security guards were busy restraining someone. That diversion opened a space for a woman to run onstage and do some kind of menacing wavy arm thing in the direction of a nonplused Ivy. This went on for about three seconds before she was ambushed and carried offstage and more security guards were dispatched.

This was around the time Civilization Guy really began feelin' it, though, so I couldn't really tell you what happened onstage next. (Alison M. Rosen)

1. Pronounced "sua-VAY."

2. She said ascent. I would say the same thing, although I'm a pessimist. Go figure.

3. Because I play in a band and people tell me that all the time, except for the people who say I remind them of Poison Ivy. I like them. I hate everyone else. Did I mention that sold-out shows make me hate everyone?

Send CDs, tapes and the all-important contact info to Locals Only, OC Weekly, P.O. Box 10788, Costa Mesa, CA 92627-0247.

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