02 June 2006

and the gap between crack and thunder, crack and thunder, is closing in

i am constantly taunting new york with my claims that its thunderstorms are lacking in both frequency and intensity. atlanta gets fierce storms almost daily due to its immense radiation of heat (mostly from traffic) and they are loud and scary and i love them. so you can imagine my delight last night when finally the gods started banging around on the drums up there.

xx and i were on our way to the rogue wave show at southpaw when the 12oz drops began falling all around us. sparsely, at first, cold plops on our arms and heads, leaving us plenty of time to establish the gate as our first port of call. we dipped into bagel world, though, when someone turned the water pressure way up.

this turned out to be a fortunate side trip, as not only am i pretty sure they stayed open well past their normal closing time to accomodate the few of us caught on that particular block in the storm, but when i saw the guy run out to a car and unload a giant batch of cupcakes , i ran out after him with my umbrella to protect the little sweeties, and xx and i were granted with free (and absolutely delicious) ones!!

it might have been the angry latnia coming in, yelling at the guys behind the counter and racing out of bagel world with a metal ladder into a thunderstorm or the ever so slight lightening of rain that convinced us to make our way to the gate. we ran down the block and managed to grab two pints (brooklyn blonde!!) and settle out on the patio.

yes, the patio. yes, it was still storming. but they had their canopy out and there were quite a few of us camped out enjoying the smell of fresh rain and the lightning and thunder and watching sad fools walk down the streets in various states of drenchedness whilst enjoying cold (US) pints. we had a nice chat with two guys who have a boat and drink very fancy beer, which they let us try (leftbrau? it's delish!) and the guy and girl on the other side of us who were equally giddy at being able to watch the storm outside with beer.

we were also fortunate enough to be within earshot (not that it was very difficult) of "that girl". note it was roughly 9pm, not the time for such antics. she was yelling at what i can only assume was her boyfriend, who looked somewhere between bored, horrified and resigned, almost the entire time we were there. at one point i mouthed to xx "is she wasted?" and that girl promply confirmed my suspicions by announcing, "but i am an artist, it doesn't matter how talented people are, it's all luck!!!" whatevs, hon. go home time!

things had finally eased by the time we slid down to 'paw. we got there just as the vaguely interesting second opener finished up and rogue wave came out about 20 minutes later.

when i saw rw with nada surf earlier this year, i was pretty well disappointed, but retained a desire to check them out when they were standing on their own, and i am very glad i did. they sounded clear and powerful and well-rested, and it looked like zach had actually bathed in the past couple days. he was sporting a seemingly clean black tee shirt versus his dingy white one of last show. he also seemed to have got some new jeans.

the thing about rogue wave that always made me think they should be great live is the tidal nature of their songs. each one has slow parts and rockin' parts and swaying parts and melodic parts. they're like a perfectly-toasted, buttered english muffin: some bites are very crunchy and a bit drier, and some are that awesome burst of butter that's been hiding in one of the deeper nooks and crannies and it's glorious. (eg, endgame, 10:1)

anyway, enough with the breakfast food analogies, this time, as i'd hoped, the drum rolls in "bird on a wire" came through with avengance and zach channeled freedy johnston eerily well for "california". the whole set, while lacking in a few of my personal favorites, was well rounded and included, to my very very very very very very very beer spillingly joyous surprise, a downright delicious cover of the beatles' "i'm only sleeping" of which just a few nights prior i'd been extolling the virtues to xx at brooklyn social, as well as "something in the air" as a closer.

the overall pleasantness of the evening despite near-misses of lightning strikes was almost enough to make me not care about the group of morons standing next to us at the show. i always stand behind the tall guy, because there is one for every 5 or so peope at every show. and they are evenly distributed throughout the crowd. but this tall guy was not only oafish and gennerally irritating to look at, but came with a set of two petite girls, neither of whom could manage to shut their traps the entire way through the fucking show. this of course caused oaf man to continually bend down to hear what they were saying and respond, forcing me to rearrange myself about 50 times over the course of the show. not only that, but these fucktoids were standing at the front of the raised part of southpaw, which means they were fucking up a lot of people's good times. the guy next to me and i exchanged "should we just kill them?" looks a number of times and by the end of the show xx and i were just agog at how moronic these people were acting. why the hell do you go to a gig if you don't have the slightest intention of listening to the music? get the fuck out before i dump my beer on your oafish (or "that's so stupid"-repeated over and over and over and over again) head!

but it was really fantastic time.

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