Poor Fishbone can't catch a break. Although at this point, it's probably better if they don't. For more than 20 years, they have eluded mainstream success (save the 1985 ska hit "Party at Ground Zero") yet managed to achieve both cult-icon status and genuine respect in the music industry. For them to blow up now would almost spoil their avant-garde, nonconformist reputation. Despite previous disappointing record sales, their insane live show has been the cause of Fishbone's longevity. Anyone remember when they played Saturday Night Live? Vocalist Angelo Moore did a backflip into the camera pit about five seconds into the song. Dropped from their label in 2000, Fishbone picked up with independent label Sound In Color to deliver their ninth (!) album. Aptly named Still Stuck In Your Throat, the new disc brings the innovative, chaotic energy that makes Fishbone unique, with the help of Suicidal Tendencies guitarist Rocky George.
Ever the social activist, Moore adds his own opinions of the world around us to a dizzy mix of horns and metal. "Let Dem Ho's Fight" is a ditty dedicated to the need for street justice, and "Party With Saddam" cries out that world peace is just a good time away. Still Stuck In Your Throat ends triumphantly with a cover of Sublime's "Date Rape," a nod to a fellow groundbreaking ska band. Although ska saw its third revival come and go in the mid-'90s, Fishbone isn't going anywhere.
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Fishbone with the Expendables, Not a Chance and RadioActive Chicken Heads at the Galaxy Concert Theatre, 3503 S. Harbor Blvd., Santa Ana, (714) 957-0600; www.galaxytheatre.com. Fri., 8 p.m. $16-$18.