Blame it on Bloodfart (they won't care), but the '80s revival has hit Houston -- for better or worse -- with a vengeance. De Schmog vocalist Diane Koistenen says she spent the past three months hanging around bars, chatting with bands and singing stupid songs, before the idea of a multi-band tribute to the music of the greed decade hit full-force. Once she began trying to organize in earnest, interested bands came out of the woodwork. What had been envisioned as a small show blossomed into a logistical nightmare, and Koistenen and her bandmates finally decided that the easiest way to bring everything together would be to present the concert as a benefit. And since, along with investment bankers, sushi and modern heavy metal, the '80s spawned the first broad awareness of AIDS, Houston's Stone Soup Kitchen -- which provides food and care to home-restricted AIDS patients -- was designated the event's beneficiary. Numbers' Bruce Godwin joined the effort by donating his club's space, and the show is a go.
Bleachbath, Carolyn Wonderland and the Imperial Monkeys, dead horse, de Schmog, Dry Nod, Joint Chiefs, Keenlies, Manhole, Retardo al Dante, Sad Pygmy, Sasquatch 2000, Skillit, Sprawl, Spunk and Squat Thrust, not necessarilly in that order, will each play two to three selections from their formative years, emceed by Bloodfart's Heavy Dee, ex-Catal Huyuk Poetry Slam honcho Malcolm McDonald, and Godwin, among others. Koistenen says there'll be skits of '80s TV commercials between sets, informational pamphlets, acoustic sets and an all-star finale jam including a good 90 percent of the Houston music underground.
Oh, and you're encouraged to dress as your fave '80s icon, for which trouble you stand to win one of the dozens of classic '80s albums donated by the bands as prize fare. If your copy of Journey's Departure is as groove-worn as mine, you might want to start digging through that closet.
In any case, if the promise of Carolyn Wonderland covering Joan Jett or Skillit doing "My Kinda Lover" or Spunk pillaging the Quiet Riot catalog isn't enough to pique your interest, you might want to show up just for the sheer goodness of the cause. Or to see just how inspiring/damaging those ten years have been to our contemporary crop of musicians. Or it might be worth the price of admission just for the chance to come to terms -- binge-and-purge style -- with the legacy of the entire gruesome decade. It followed us out of high school, after all, and we're going to have to deal with its bloated spectre sooner or later.
WHAT: '80s for AIDS.
WHEN: Doors at 8 p.m., music promptly at 8:30, Saturday, December 4.
WHERE: Numbers, 300 Westheimer, 526-8338.
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HOW MUCH: $10 donation at the door. All proceeds go to the Stone Soup Kitchen. All ages welcome.