If you haven't heard, Irvine Meadows Amphitheater no longer exists —the name, that is. Last week, OC's only large-scale outdoor concert venue announced that it has joined the ranks of such corporate-monikered local arenas as the Arrowhead Pond of Anaheim, Edison International Field and the OC Weekly Polo Grounds. Refer to the Meadows now as Verizon Wireless Amphitheater. "Pronounced: vurr-EYE-zon," as the press release points out, Verizon Wireless is a cell-phone company. Okay, you can all see the joke, so let's repeat it together: "A wireless amphitheater? Does that mean they'll only have acoustic concerts there now?" (Rich Kane)

BLASPHEMOUS RUMORS: With our ass to the ground and our ears open, LowBallAssChatter caught the downwind of rumors that some sort of crazy, famous, jaw-dropping, pants-wetting, I-can't-believe-it!-type secret special guest was to perform at the Hub's April 22 Earth Day fest, along with Reel Big Fish, Save Ferris and Zebrahead. The first name bandied about—way before the show date—was Weezer. "I don't think so. I haven't heard anything about that," said perplexed Hub co-owner Carlo Terranova at the time, looking like he really didn't think so and that he really hadn't heard anything about it. The next name down the pike was No Doubt. "Is it true?" one fan asked another at the band's April 13 Triangle Square minishow. "I heard that, like, every single band from Orange County that has become famous is going to be playing!" said another. "Please, kids," LowBallAssChatter thought to itself, "it's supposed to be a big show, not a magic one." At the show itself, it was rumored that Lit was supposed to play but didn't show up. LowBallAssChatter does not take well to taunting and teasing, so it went directly to the source, Terranova, who confirmed that all the rumors, many of which he hadn't heard, were nothing but . . . LowBallAssChatter. "At the very beginning, 'special guests' meant Save Ferris because we weren't allowed to advertise them on fliers until after April 7," he said. "Then it meant the Aquabats because they weren't a definite, but then we mentioned them and they ended up not being able to play after all." Oh. Isn't reality boring? (Alison M. Rosen)

OUR BROS-BEFORE-HOS AWARD: Dial-7 vocalist Michael Lord and band bassist Barrett were spotted a few weeks ago kicking it on the USA Network's Friends or Lovers show. This new piece of edutainment forces one lucky contestant to choose between his or her best friend and current love interest. Lord took Barrett on the program to inform him that Dial-7's future was in jeopardy due to his lack of commitment. "He's John Lennon to my Paul McCartney," Lord said, moving on to tell Barrett, "I wanna keep it real with you. There are things more important than relationships like this"—referring to Barrett's porn-star girlfriend. The decision was rather simple for Barrett when informed that the girlfriend—the Yoko Ono in this equation, we assume—was already married. "I gotta stick with my band," Barrett wisely concluded. In return for Barrett's heartbreak, he and Lord received a trip to Acapulco with free drinks, dinners and cover charges. (Jeremy Scherer)


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FANTASTIC: Weekly contributor Michael Coyle reports that the ballyhooed Audiotistic rave April 15 in San Bernardino was a tad, um, underwhelming. "Miserably overcrowded," Coyle says. "After spending two hours in line to get frisked, you got to enjoy packed rooms where oxygen was scarce and dancing was out of the question. As the night wore on, people just kept filing in until nearly every square inch of the National Orange Show Pavilion was occupied. Since there were no set lists or programs, you never knew who was playing until they started. I saw five minutes of Jurassic 5's set and had to leave the room because I was being crushed. Anyone popular was out of the question —I've been in Slayer crowds and mosh pits that were easier to negotiate. To top it off, the police decided that riding motorcycles through the crowd was a nice way of showing their omnipresence, kinda like the Hell's Angels did at Altamont. I left at 4 a.m., very disappointed at the promoters for so heavily touting the comfort of the audience as one of their concerns. It's good most of the crowd wasn't drinking and was instead on more social stimulants because things could have gotten really ugly. Even the people on Ecstasy didn't have a good time, which says a lot."

MIXED NOTES: As long as Irvine Meadows is switching names, Tazy Phyllipz might want to consider a title change for his 10-year-old, ever-evolving Ska Parade radio show on KUCI-FM 88.9: playing live in-studio this weekend are cool country hillbillies BR5-49. Bend an ear Saturday from noon to 2 p.m. or live on the Web at www.ska . . . Koo's Art Cafe hosts two bands this weekend with either the greatest or dumbest—or cutest!—names we've heard in a long time. On Saturday, the room welcomes Attack of the Killer Origami, while Run for Your Fucking Life appear Sunday. . . . My Superhero front man Brian Gilmore has apologized, sort of, for behavior he now calls "immature," "offensive" and "aggressive"—posting notes to a band website that attacked gays, liberals, "left-wing socialist college professors" and "Red China" (see LowBallAssChatter, April 28). In a press release posted on citizens., Gilmore says he's sorry he hurt anybody's feelings—and then attacks "liberal journalism" ("guys like me get taken out of context on a daily basis") and says his band mates should not be held responsible for his beliefs: "No one has tried to contact the other members in the band to see if they even have the same opinions as I," Gilmore writes. So let's provide this context: LowBallAssChatter, trademarked purveyors of liberal journalism, tried unsuccessfully several times to reach other members of My Superhero. . . . An intriguing side note to the punk-rock all-star benefit for the family of late Social Distortion guitarist Dennis Danell taking place at Irvine Mea—d'oh!—"Verizon Wireless Amphitheater": both Agent Orange and the Offspring are on the bill. You might recall the fracas five years ago when Mike Palm, who wrote Agent Orange's "Bloodstains," and Robbie Fields, the song's copyright owner, tried to get Epitaph, the Offspring's then-label, to pay them a penny-per-album royalty for supposedly purloining "Bloodstains'" snaky Middle Eastern guitar hook for the Offspring's own "Come out and Play." At press time, we were unable to determine if any bad karma between the two famed OC punk camps still exists. But, hey, maybe they're just down for the cause.(RK)

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