By Sarah Bennett
By Adam Lovinus
By Jena Ardell
By Nate Jackson
By Gustavo Arellano
By Nick Keppler
By Nate Jackson
By Alex Distefano
Meet the new boss
Fuck, yeah, work sucks. "Everybody hates working—at least I think so. I can't imagine anyone who enjoys doing it," says Work Sucks vocalist/guitarist Ryan Ritchie. And with the understanding of that immutable natural law—and with Ryan Clark (also seen in Sendaero) on bass and Steve DeLuca on drums—Work Sucks was born. All their songs are about work sucking: shitty jobs, shitty bosses and the horror of dealing with both. They've had plenty of experience to draw on and don't see an end to song fodder any time soon. "I was a secret shopper for KFC," says Ritchie. "And I'm a vegetarian. I used to go to nine KFCs a day, and I was supposed to say if the food was good or not, and I lied on every one. They would tell you what to order. I just gave it all away. I just got drinks." Live, most songs are prefaced with the story of the shit job that inspired it, and the lyrics usually consist of the title ("Wash Your Own Fuckin' Dishes," "My Boss Sucks") repeated enough times to hammer home the point. Failing that, the band falls back on a song or two by obvious inspiration Black Flag. "I've got a lot of material because on a daily basis, something stupid happens where I go, 'There's a song!' In my head, I've got nine albums' worth of ideas," says Ritchie. When pressed, they can get a little deeper about what aspects of the working world really cause all the misery: "Working hard I don't mind," says Ritchie. "I enjoy working hard in this band. I just don't enjoy making money for other people. A work ethic, there's nothing wrong with that. It's having a boss that sucks." (Rex Reason)
WORK SUCKS WITH THE MIGGLEYS AT Taco Beach, 211 Pine Ave., Long Beach, (562) 983-1337. Sun.,
8 P.M. Free. 21+.
Was (Not Was)
Hello, dad, i'm on a reunion tour
Don and David Was were proud and worthy ol' Detroit weirdoes, introducing in some ways elements of their city's famously raw rock & roll into its famously heavy techno and hammering out percussive mutant disco tracks that put club beats under performance-art weirdness: like the guy says, "Hello, Dad? I'm in jail!" Their first hit in the early '80s was "Wheel Me Out," a seven-minute slab of sleaze since rehabilitated for the neo-Paradise Garage crowd, but the quote/unquote brothers Was really made serious forays into clubland with "Out Come the Freaks" and "Spy In the House of Love." They broke up in '93, and Don went on to arguably greater fame as an in-vogue producer during those wacky carefree grunge years, even assembling a characteristically skewed Beatles cover band—including Thurston Moore and Dave Grohl—for the film Backbeat. But after processed beats and self-conscious strangeness (what's up, LCD Soundsystem?) burst through the bottom of current pop culture like zombie arms through a basement floor, Was (Not Was) quietly reunited—perhaps sensing still-unmined potential—and set up a small tour to promote a CD of new material and a new best-of compilation. (Chris Ziegler)
WAS (NOT WAS) AT THE HOUSE OF BLUES, 1530 S. DISNEYLAND DR., ANAHEIM, (714) 778-BLUE. MON.,
7 P.M. $25. ALL AGES.
Good Foot Christmas
Santa Claus comes to the ghetto
This should happen every year: Club Good Foot, the most potent antidote to the biggest letdown of the darkest coldest part of winter—yeah, Christmas, which is only good if you're in a combat zone enjoying a cease-fire or at McMurdo Station putting tinsel on a snowplow; else it's just commercial obligation putting a wall between you and a few quiet moments of family time; or maybe it's just kind of demoralizing because there's no way little sister is getting that iPod she wants on this salary, but anyway! DJs Dennis and Rodi are two resolutely cheerful guys who are going to drag the world out of the DMZ under the Christmas tree for a night of soul, funk and rare groove on Christmas day itself. James Brown must by needs make several appearances in the playlist, but the King and Federal labels—Brown-ian contemporaries—cranked out a lot of holiday product, and Ray Charles had all sorts of Yule-y moments on Atlantic and beyond, and Lowell Fulson (a.k.a. Fulsom, the guy who discovered one of the Great Riffs of the Ages in "Tramp," sampled in some incarnation by Cypress Hill and probably tons of others) did the original "Lonesome Christmas" on Hollywood Records, and Andre Williams had to have gotten in there somewhere, and Ike Turner was such a mercenary he wouldn't have let some easy seasonal cash-in sneak by, and Motown and Stax and Phil Spector—anyway! Besides the fascinating potential in a solid holiday-themed Good Foot playlist, it'll be uplifting, cheerful, heartfelt music after that awkward family dinner. Kick away those shreds of wrapping paper and get out of the house as soon as you can, and then go to Alex's Bar, the only place where it won't be a bummer to work Christmas day except for certain Chinese restaurants. (CZ)
GOOD FOOT AT ALEX'S BAR, 2913 E. ANAHEIM ST., LONG BEACH, (562) 434-8292. SAT., 9 P.M. FREE. 21+.