Linda's Doll Hut
Monday, Jan. 31
"Consarn you, Locals Only!" a fan recently complained, taking us to task for not getting out enough on the weeknights. Fact is, knave, we do—we just don't always scribble about everything we see. We must, however, rave about the goodness of Flogging Molly, whom we caught—on a Monday! On a weeknight!—at Linda's Doll Hut. In the mood for some raucous Irish tuneage (we're heading to Ireland at the end of the month for a much-deserved two-week holiday, as well as hiding out from fiery-eyed Save Ferris fans), we figured this would be the band to see. And what better way to practice getting properly sauced on cheap Guinness?
So the Hut was packed for the Mollys, a seven-piece outfit whose lead singer is an honest-to-Christ Irishman (either that or his accent was very well-rehearsed, Meryl Streep-style). The band's bumper sticker should go something like this: "If you liked the Pogues, then you'll love Flogging Molly." This is a band armed with lots of furious, punked-up Irish folk tunes—electric guitars laced with steamy, heaping slabs of all the appropriate traditional instruments, fiddles, mandolins, bodhrans, squeeze boxes, tin whistles, the whole stinkin' Irish music mess.
It was all glorious and rousing. Just ask the football-hooligans-in-training planted closest to the band, who hoisted their plastic cups of Guinness high in the air and belted out such phrases as "AAARRRGGGHHH!!!" to no one in particular. Though they threatened for a spell to divert all attention from the band, the band knew better than to simply surrender—thanks partially to an unusually loud drummer who swung extra-thick sticks that looked as if they'd been freshly hewn from a tree trunk—unless they weretree trunks.
What stood out most about the set were such majestic narratives as (what we think were titled) "Death Valley Queen," "Selfish Man" and "The Devil's Dance Floor," tossed up with a carefree, fuck-it-all abandon. While they often indulged in naked, weepy sentimentality (it is, after all, Irish music), they more frequently spent their time knocking us out with several angry, sweat-soaked, pissed-off numbers about stuff like dancing on the graves of cold, heartless bastards. Now who couldn't love that?
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The Mollys were so zesty they made us wanna git out 'n' smack up su' filthy English dogs! Good craic, as they say in Dublin. And what's more, Flogging Molly will be playing Monday nights at Linda's for the next couple of weeks, so we highly recommend you go for a taste—of the band and the $3 Guinness they're pouring at the bar.
Tub Club Mesa Tuesday, Feb. 1
It's been eons since we last checked in with the irrepressible Tub, who are back playing shows again after a months-long layoff. Seems they've expanded to a five-piece, having taken in part-time rock critic/Sugar Ray sage George Fryer, on loan from the fantabulous Peace Corp. You like guitars, kids? Tub now have three of 'em, plus an always-walloping rhythm section. Now their sound is bigger and fuller, while still retaining its superiffically supreme rockingness. Plus, they're doing intriguing things to some of their arrangements, and on this eve, they gave a decidedly alterna-country groove to "Bow Wow (In Battery Park)." As luck has it, Tub are doing a residency of their own at Club Mesa, where they'll be every Tuesday night throughout February. Go, good people—there's no cover, so everything but the beer and video games is free, free, free!
Send CDs, tapes, show dates, love letters, incoherent ramblings, whatever, to Locals Only, OC Weekly, P.O. Box 10788, Costa Mesa, CA 92627-0247.