SHOW REVIEW: Supersuckers w/ The Jimmies and The Briefs|
March 31, 2000 - Portland, Oregon (Berbati's Pan)
By: Alex Steininger
If rock 'n' roll is fucking dead, someone forgot to tell the crowd at the Supersuckers' recent Portland performance. Supporting them on the bill were The Briefs and The Jimmies, two more prime examples of why anyone who says rock is dead is listening to way too much modern rock while holed up in their bedroom surfing the net looking for computer porn.
From the first chord of The Briefs drunken, robotic barroom rock 'n' roll piss 'n' vinegar mayhem to their final number, they were stuck with the daunting chore of warming up the Supersuckers crowd. Yet, by moving in weird, robotic-like movements on stage and trading off lead vocals (both of the guitarists and the bassist got chances to lead the song), The Briefs powered through rock 'n' roll that was equal parts punk fury and drunken barroom know how. Supersuckers' lead vocalist Eddie Spaghetti even presented them with a trophy at the end of their set, which is quite an honor, one the crowd agreed with after just witnessing (a lot for the first time, I assume, much like me) just how bad ass and wild The Briefs and their take on rock 'n' roll could be.
Hot off the release of their Panic Button/Lookout! Records debut (Let The Fat Men Plunder), Longview, Washington's The Jimmies hit the stage and gave fans a taste of their '77 style punk rock; quite poppy and melodic while still maintaining a very boisterous and hyperactive front, The Jimmies can play to rock 'n' rollers, pop fans, and punkers alike. Fan favorites such as "Cheap" never sounded so fast and furious, while cuts off Let The Fat Men Plunder took on a life of their own, breathing and living in front of the crowd. "Summer High" got the crowd pumping, "Ginger" had heads spinning, and "Sweat and Blood" could have moved mountains with its roaring guitars, sharp vocals, and pounding rhythm section.
The Jimmies left such an impression, a few members of the audience, who had witnessed them for the first time, were calling for an encore. And longtime fans of the band were most likely craving more too, such as myself, as their high-volume, high-octane, melodic punk seemed to be the perfect release on a beautiful Friday night.
Now, I've put my ears through shit time and time again, yet they've always treated me great, never complaining or trying to get back at me for the massive volumes I subject them to show after show. But after The Jimmies left the stage, I noticed my ears were ringing and stinging a bit. I wasn't going to miss the Supersuckers though, that's for sure, so I stood in place and just awaited the rock spectacular that was about to come on.
Anyone that has ever seen the Supersuckers before knows that their recordings, though powerful, especially their latest, The Evil Powers of Rock 'N' Roll, just don't come close to their live show. And tonight was no exception. Playing a majority of cuts off their two latest releases, the Sub Pop released greatest 'hits' collection entitled The Greatest Rock And Roll Band In The World and Evil Powers (Koch), the band got the crowd moving like no other.
The crowd was bouncing around, dancing, and even singing along, while in the middle of it all you could find a pit emerging. Plenty of sweaty, drunk, and wild people slammed into each other or danced through such 'Suckers favorites as "Coattail Rider," Creepy Jackalope Eye," "Born With A Tail," "Doublewide," "The Evil Powers of Rock 'n' Roll," "I Want The Drugs," "Santa Rita High," "Hot Like The Sun," and plenty more.
The volume was intense and the stage show was unmatchable. Eddie Spaghetti (who is now sporting a mustache) lead the band through The Heathman and "Thunder" Bolton's ripping, sweat-drenched guitar riffs, while his bass and the roar of the drums crashed and banged out the plentiful rhythms that made the night as fierce as it was.
Coming out for an encore and finishing with a Motorhead cover, the Supersuckers defined the term "high-octane" with their patented, world famous rock 'n' roll. And, just as I did, I'm sure every audience member walked out agreeing that the Supersuckers truly are the "Greatest Rock 'n' Roll Band in the World." Heck, my ears haven't rung after a show for quite some time. But when the 'Suckers walked off the stage and the room lights lit up, the roar of the crowd was even too much for me, so I had to quickly get out of there. Hitting pavement as I walked out the doors, the painful ringing in my ears hit me like a ton of bricks. I knew then that rock 'n' roll is alive and well and that nobody does it better than the Supersuckers.