Rocket From the Crypt Showcase Samurai Skills

Andy "N.D." Stamets and John "Speedo" Reis
Andy "N.D." Stamets and John "Speedo" Reis
Greg Jacobs

Rocket From the Crypt Observatory 5/30/2015 I've seen Rocket From the Crypt at least 50 times and last night they did two things I'd never seen before.

First, they played with drummer Chris Prescott, best known as the skinsman in No Knife, Tanner and Fishwife. Prescott toured with the band during the RFTC days, but during that stint he played percussion and keyboards. Last night, dude was the full-on drummer. There was no mention of why he was there and Mario "Ruby Mars" Rubalcaba wasn't, but Prescott did a damn fine job filling in. There was times when the look on his face suggested he might not have remembered how a song began, but from what I could tell, he didn't mess up at all and if anyone in that crowd knew every tiny part to every Rocket From the Crypt song, it was me.

Second, singer John "Speedo" Reis pulled out a samurai sword for the last song ("Glazed," off 1992's Circa: Now!) and not only showed it to the crowd with an array of menacing faces, he also played guitar with it. Just when you think Speedo is the coolest guy in the room, he pulls a stunt like this and then you realize he's infinitely cooler than you previous envisioned.

Perhaps the sword was the perfect bookend to the evening. You see, just before the band came on stage (like one minute before), someone threw a pair of panties on stage. And not only did the panties make it on stage, they wrapped themselves perfectly around guitarist Andy "N.D." Stamets' microphone stand. Which, naturally, lead Speedo to take the panties and give them to someone in the crowd.

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As far as the actual show went, there's not much to say other than Rocket From the Crypt is the best live band in the history of mankind and last night was no different.

After set-opener "Dick on a Dog," the band launched into "If the Bird Could Fly," which, I seem to remember someone writing about how it was one of their five best songs. And, after last night, I can attest that that person was right.

Also from that top five list was "Light Me," which ranks just below Frankie Valli's "Can't Take My Eyes Off You" as the greatest song ever. However, what was with Speedo not singing the "I'm gonna douse myself with gasoline and light myself on fire" line? Sure, many will say the call-and-response of "Middle" is the best part of a Rocket From the Crypt show, but my money has always been on that line (with the aforementioned "Middle" coming second) as the highlight of any Rocket show. Then again, we're nitpicking, now aren't we? Because, you see, every second of a Rocket From the Crypt show is the highlight of a Rocket From the Crypt show.

Setlist Dick on a Dog If the Bird Could Fly Straight American Slave Carne Voodoo White Belt Savoir Faire Heart of a Rat S.O.S. I'm Not Invisible Get Down Bring Us Bullets Light Me A+ in Arson Class Rid or Ride Middle Born in '69 On a Rope Young Livers (Encore) Sturdy Wrists Don't Darlene When in Rome Glazed

See also: The 50 Best Things About the OC Music Scene The 50 Worst Things About the OC Music Scene The 25 Greatest OC Bands of All Time: The Complete List

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