Nearly three years ago we wrote a breathless, hungover review of the Eagles Of Death Metal's last show at the Meridian. It was late November and the show had already been postponed due to Hurricane Ike and we had a gaggle of friends and girls with us who also saw EODM and by extension and function lead singer Jesse "The Devil" Hughes as some sort of talisman for base male sexuality and tight-panted good times.
Now, Hughes is on tour solo as Boots Electric with a backing band in tow, promoting a new album, Honkey Kong, which is catchy as hellfire but still makes us miss his other band immensely.
Sunday night's can be brutal in Houston, even with a touring act like Boots, meaning there were only a few stragglers on board. Where were all the people who turned Hughes' last show here in Houston at the Meridian with EODM in late 2008 into a sweat-stained glittered orgy? Home? Asleep? Last night at Fitzgerald's we were downstairs standing with a friend who was at that EODM show back in 2008, and just a few others.
Anytime an artist goes rogue/solo from his main group things get iffy, and Hughes/Boots is a prime example of something getting lost in translation. The attitude was there onstage but the music was trailing. This is obviously a labor of love for Hughes as he said a few times from that small Fitz stage.
The Honkey material is fun stuff, but does it deserve a full tour with a band, featuring Hughes' girl Tuesday Cross on bass duties? We are not so sure. Google her and risk your computer getting some fun pop-ups along the way. (Hint: She does the sex movies.)
The Boots set was split up between choice Honkey stuff, and Hughes doing EODM songs and a take on Bachman-Turner Overdrive's "Takin' Care Of Business" solo on his electric guitar. The band returned for a quick run-through of some EODM biggies like "Speaking In Tongues," "I Only Want You," and "Wannabe in L.A.," the latter from 2008's Heart On LP.
We aren't sure what provoked a solo album and tour -- maybe needing some creative venting and release -- but the results weren't terribly awful and spotty but they weren't flawless either. Hughes by himself is a beast onstage, all ginger moustache, swagger, and sweat, but with a band of people who aren't EODM, it's a little more meh than it should be.
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Personal Bias: Moustaches?
The Crowd: There was maybe 40 people downstairs at Fitz last night, and that includes Concrete Blonde's Johnette Napolitano who just finished a gig upstairs. Sunday night, post-Halloween party blues, we say.
Overseen in the Crowd: A really tall Freddy Krueger, who gave Hughes a tambourine, and a few costumed randoms with requisite ass showing.
Random Notebook Dump: Everything started to sound like "Brown Sugar" at varying speed and volume by halfway through the show.