At 8 o'clock sharp on Friday evening, Aftermath arrived at Walter's on Washington for a show he had long been awaiting, but he didn't get the memo: doors at 8:00; show at 9:30. Oh well... free Lone Star!
What we thought would be a punk-ish type of concert was surprising, albeit not badly, from the get go. First, The Burden took the stage and hardcore, southern rock greeted our ears. By the second song, everyone in the crowd, even those completely unfamiliar with the band's music, were bobbing their heads. And by the finale, a small mosh pit had begun. We stayed near the bar, near the free beer, saving our energy for B L A C K I E - God knows we would need it.
After The Burden, Aftermath watched two members of Ghost Town Electric begin to set up. Knowing the band is a three-piece, we couldn't help but think of our own band's performances and chuckle to ourselves. Whenever playing a gig, it seems as though one member of the band always somehow skirts his way out of helping set up (and that's not pointing fingers, because Aftermath has been guilty of it before, too). But the two began to play, and we realized that someone would be missing the show. In the middle of the set, bassist/stand-in guitarist Harrison Jacob mentioned that the GTE's guitarist wasn't able to make it to the show, but the crowd didn't seem to mind. And neither did we. The two performed fearlessly - virgin ears probably had no idea the band was missing a member - and finished out the night with a 15-minute long jam session.
B L A C K I E, who performed next, seems to have a new agenda, or at least a new spiel that sounds like that of a driven man.
"I ain't shit, and you ain't shit," B L A C K I E said to the crowd as well as a few members of The Burden, respectively. "But when we come together, we're something."
Aftermath would probably take a lighter approach - like saying, "Hey, guys. Thanks for coming. We couldn't do this without you." - but then again, we didn't create a genre of music, nor do we have the type of following B L A C K I E has, so we'll leave it to him.
"I'm tired of hearing about other cities... this is our city, this is where we live. This is for us."
For Aftermath, this was a reiteration, because we also heard his set at Summer Fest, where he said basically the exact same thing, and agree. We could go off on a 500-word tangent about the high caliber of the city of Houston, but we'll leave that to B L A C K I E... for now.
After about 30 minutes of mostly tracks off of his Spred Luv EP, which blasted through his homemade speakers that adorned the stage, B L A C K I E finished his set with an encore from Wilderness of North America. Not that the crowd really needed it, but Fat Tony helped hype of the crowd throughout the set. This worked nicely, because by the time the charismatic rapper took the stage, fans were thoroughly excited.
Beginning with an eclectic mix of standup material, monologues about crooked cops and music from our childhood, Tony had the crowd singing along and hinging on his every move and word. Meanwhile, Smash Bro stood near the back of the stage and smiled, patiently waiting for the rapping to begin. And begin it did, and somewhere in the middle, sushi and cookies were handed out.
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"Come on, y'all and get some sushi," Tony said to the crowd from the stage. "You'll never get offered free sushi at a rap concert again, I promise."
And we believe it. Tony also did a favor for Brains For Dinner by stopping the music and (politely) asking the smokers outside, many of whom had been outside for most of the show, to come in and enjoy some local tunes.
Either by Tony's request or simply because the headlining act was finally onstage, most of the people outside found their way inside for Brains For Dinner's set. The band, which is almost surreally authentic (at least to our ears), performed to hoots and hollers from fans and friends while the Brains For Dinner flag - yes, the band has its own flag - was waved high; though Aftermath was worried it might get stuck in one of the ceiling fans.
From what we know, the band is back together for a few shows this Summer before all of its members head back to their respective colleges, and Aftermath suggests you make it to one. Maybe the next one, which is at Fitzgerald's on June 26? We'll be there, and we hope to see you there, too.