concert memoirs pt. 30 - love & rockets & buzzcocks

Love & Rockets w/Orgy
3/5/99 First Avenue w/John, David & Kjrsten Ticket Price: Unknown

The opening act, Orgy, was ok. Just ok. I hadn’t heard much about them before the show. I knew they did a cover of New Order’s brilliant “Blue Monday”. About all this new Goth band did was remind me that the bands they resembled were much, much better.

Case in point, the headliner Love & Rockets. This was my second time seeing this band, the first time since their hit, “I’m Alive.” I never thought much of that song. It isn’t an awful song, but L&R have much better songs. Songs that don’t have Daniel Ash doing that annoying growly voice technique.

L&R were doing a techno-industrial sound at this stage of their career. They still had much of their style from before (including some of the Ash growl), but they were bringing in that techo sound that you would find in the ‘Run Lola Run’ soundtrack.

I really liked it. The show was loud, fast and flashy. I had their latest album, ‘Lift’, so I was familiar with the new material. My friend, John, however was not. I’m not sure how much him enjoyed the show. David may have known the material, but David was always more accepting of new stuff if it moved him. L&R were really moving the crowd that night.

I liked the gimmick when, during the song “R.I.P. 20C”, David J had a sign out in front of him that listed all the acronyms used in the song. Not an especially exciting memory - it just stands out.

Correction 1/21/09: My friend, David, informed me that it was his now wife, Kjrsten, who attended the show with us, not his ex-wife, Diane. I made the correction. Sorry, David and Kjrsten.

Buzzcocks w/Lunachicks, Down By Law & Boris the Sprinkler
11/6/99 First Avenue w/John & Amy Ticket Price: Unknown

Uh, does that say “Amy”? A concert with a woman? Who is this Amy?

Well, it had happened before that I attended a concert with a woman (Paytee, The Jayhawks, First Avenue, 7/9/95), but this time was a bit different. Whereas the earlier show was with a female friend, this young woman was more important.

There’s a story here. I stated before in this series that I had worked at a shirt printing shop in Minneapolis. I left the company in the spring of 1999 to work at an ad agency. Although, I had left that company, I still kept in loose contact with the guys still working there. I would even visit if I got off early at the agency, which was rare.

Because I had left Cold Side (the printing company) was left with one staff artist and they needed two. They hired a talented, young artist named Amy.

I got off early on a Friday afternoon and decided to go pay a visit on my friends at Cold Side. The day had been a particularly stressful one and I thought it would be nice to unwind with my old coworkers.

When I arrived, I was almost immediately set upon by one of the printers. He was so excited he was like a little puppy. Jumping around me and telling me that I just had to ask Amy out. He said she was perfect for me. That she was so much like me that they had taken to calling her Amy/Jim.

I wasn’t much of a ladies’ man (still ain’t much of one) and any talk of getting me involved with a woman made me want to run for the hills. I ain't gay. I'm just afraid of women. I told him if he didn’t settle down I might leave.

I didn’t leave.

A group of us ambled over to a local bar (Amy was in the group). Amy and I sat together and, as the night wore on, we found the rest of our group had all left. We didn’t close the bar, but pretty close to it. I got her home, we hugged, and we parted at the door.

She told me that I had nice hands.

Well, as evidence that the printer was right about how much alike Amy and I were, we each had a ticket for the Buzzcocks show the next night.

This brings me to this entry’s show. John and I headed to First Avenue together and we met up with Amy there. The three of us sat in a corner somewhere upstairs as the opening acts played. John and I have always had a habit of irreverently joking around. We would joke around just about anywhere whatever the situation. We were joking around that night and Amy joined right in. Amy is very funny.

The Buzzcocks played and they were great as always. Amy and I opted to stay off the floor, but John was itching to get into the slam dancing. Off he went, but he didn’t last long. He came back winded. Well, we weren’t getting any younger.

When the show ended, I didn’t hang out with Amy. I know, I know. I just met her and I wanted to take things slow. Yeah, sure! I was scared.

Well, I would be seeing more of Amy, after all, she did become my wife.

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