Last Night: The Black Lips at Detroit Bar

Black Lips, Pierced Arrows and The Growlers
At Detroit Bar
February 10, 2008

Better than: Staying at home and perfecting the 10-key.

Download: “O Katrina” by Black Lips.

You know a show is awesome when you leave drenched in sweat and covered in silly string. Also, I think I'm now slightly deaf. That, my friends, is how the Black Lips do it!

Last night's mosh pit was everything a cozy-sized venue pit should be! Or, well, shouldn't be – did anyone actually read the warnings taped to every corner of the wall at Detroit Bar? You wanna mosh? You wanna brave the mere thought of moshing? Unless, you wanna find your bitch ass in deep shit. . .and man, I wouldn't fuck with Detroit's co-owner, Chris! Although that one security guard tried to keep things calm, within the first couple of songs I watched as he was swallowed and dragged under the frenzied wave of pushing/shoving drunks.

I was cautioned by my fellow OC Weekly comrade, Kevin Poush: be alert, these guys are known for their stage antics, ie. pissing on the crowd, chucking bottles, spitting and even (gulp!) ETC.!


The Growlers

But before the night brought about our notorious headliners, two more acts certainly warmed the crowd up. First up, The Growlers – right away, a band that gets you groovin' in that way so reminiscent of Jim Morrison and the Doors. I was particularly impressed with voice of the lead singer. He's the kind you'd be pretty confident in identifying out of the clear blue, it would go something like, “Hey! No seriously, I know that's that guy from The Growlers!” You understand.

The Pierced Arrows

Next up were the Pierced Arrows, led by Fred and Toody Cole, along with drummer Kelly Halliburton. I was kind of skeptical, along with the rest of the crowd, as we gazed at these “elder” musicians and strapping young drummer- could they really rock? But yes, they really did.

This was a show that I wanted to make absolutely certain I was in 100% tip top physical shape for – but as fate would have it, I found myself here on the edge of recovery from a killer cold and flu. I was also eerily sober. I'd have to make the best of it. Shit, these guys had better be good. And oh fuck yeah, they were!

Theirs was a frenzied orgy of crazy drunk bitches crashing the stage, with a girl dry humping a microphone, along with Pierced Arrows drummer, Kelly, plopping himself down at the corner of the stage- taking in the violent moshing as though it were a picnic.

Whoa. Gross!

Cole, one of the guitarists, spits into the air and catches it again in his mouth – never missing a single beat! Not once, not twice, but throughout their entire set. Much to my amusement, he loses his aim and at one point a massive glob of spit lands square in the face of Kelly – he sees me laughing, closes his eyes, smiles, then wipes the dripping saliva from his face.


Indeed, this experience is not for the faint of heart. My cousin Billy Joe and I found our hearts nice and thumpy. Incredible band, each with their own endearing persona – one of the band members, Ian, sported a sexy mouth full of gold. Joe, the drummer was as cute as a button with his little bowl-shaped hair cut. So dirty and cute – I just wanted to tuck them away in my pocket! Please boys, come back and see us again soon.

Critic's Notebook:

Personal Bias: My cousin and I met founding Black Lips member, and savvy mustache wearer, Jared Swilley before the show and he's one charming fellow. He photographs well too! (see above)

Random Detail: Hey, drunk bitch who wore all black! Yeah, there's no imaginary door on stage – you've got to crawl back into the crowd like the rest of them.

By The Way:
Kelly Halliburton. You know you got that spit in the face because you stole the beer that was intended for Jared. Shame on you!

Photo credit: First shot via the Black Lips MySpace page. Our camera died before they came on; a lucky thing since if the camera had a voice, I think it would've squealed out something along the lines of, “No, no! Not the mosh pit!”

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