The long running 90s Indie darlings, Yo La Tengo stopped through Sacramento on promotional tour for their latest effort, Fade on Matador Records. This is a band that seems to do no wrong, as far as critics are concerned, and judging by the loving gazes from the nearly packed audience, their fans feel the same.
Check out Yo La Tengo on tour & purchase their latest release, Fade on Amazon.
Photo © Maria Colòn for FLAB Magazine
I came across Jonathon Bafus, a local Sacramento Drummer, when he and Tera Melos’ Nick Reinhart opened for Melt Banana with a totally improvised free jazz/noise set. His obvious exuberance and interesting kit configuration put him on the radar for our drummer Q&A. Since the he’s been playing around Sacto with Gentleman Surfer. I caught up with him via email and he graciously offered his two cents on the following….
After close to 20 years of not playing together, post Minute Men trio, fIREHOSE kicked off their reunion tour at Harlows in Sacramento. The largely over 40 crowd traveled from as far away as bassist Mike Watt’s hometown of San Pedro, California and Denver, Colorado just to see this historic reunion. Opening for fIREHOSE was NorCal punk band (also drawing an over 40 crowd) Victims Family, and Sacramento locals Tera Melos, largely drawing an under 25 crowd of boys.
Tera Melos played a tight selection from their body of work that enlivened their fan base as much as they can be enlivened (considering the music isn’t exactly danceable nor moshable), which was enough for one kid to head bang, fart and sing along to every song they played. This was amusing and gross, for me because I stood next to him up in front of the stage. I could have moved, but my vantage point provided me the eye-catching hilarity that was a Freddie Krueger effigy looking like it was singing backup to guitarist/singer, Nick Reinhart, that, and drummer John Clardy was having one hell of a set, so I didn’t want to move.
The place really started to get packed when Victims Family took the stage. I was told by a woman who looked to be about 50 (which is really a NorCal Punk Rock 40) that I was “daft” for not knowing who they were. They were pretty much like fIREHOSE, so I found them enjoyable enough. By the time, fIREHOSE did come on stage the place was packed in tight. I’d never actually been to a show at Harlows that was sold out, and I have to admit, it was a lot of fun. Everyone was overjoyed to see Ed, Mike and George in great form, and since I could never afford concerts tickets as a teenager I was pretty happy to see them too.
It’s kind of hard to explain the overwhelming sense of joy a punk rock show, even with the thrashing about, waves of bodies crushing against the stage, can engender, especially because so much of it seems like violence but this was different. It was like a Pentecostal revival without the snakes and religious dogma. It was Punk Rock Church.
All photos © Maria Colòn
Monday night at Harlows was an all-new music experience for me. I’d heard of Melt Banana but had never sought out their music. Likewise, I’d heard of Retox (only recently since they’re relatively new anyway) but had only that week listened to their new release, Ugly Animals. Both bands commanded the stage in their own way and were extremely enjoyable (especially Melt Banana) but the real surprise was seeing Nick Reinhart of Tera Melos performing an improvisational jam with a local drummer I’d never heard. Turns out his name is Jon Bafus and he is insanely good! Watching them both create spontaneously was an inspiration and for me, the best part of the night.
All photos © Maria Antonia Colòn
Like his Tera Melos buddies, Sean Stout, is a native of Sacramento with a love of music and video making. He , along with Zach Hill, made the best video ever to represent the general malaise of life in the River City. We ask him some questions. You read the answers.
FLABmag: So where are you from?
Sean: I’m originally from Sacramento but have only been back here for the past year after about a two years split between the east coast NY, Philadelphia and then Portland.
FLABmag: What compelled you start TerrorEyes.TV? What’s your goal for the site?
Sean: TE originally started as a blog to post random odd videos that me and my friends where making, it wasn’t originally a music site. There were skate videos, weird arty videos, video interviews with artists, drawings, photos, whatever. It didn’t have a theme at all and was very disorganized. All I wanted was to make weird videos. At the time all my friends played music and that just ended up being the most accessible thing to me. So eventually I turned the site strictly into a music video site and it sort of just evolved from there. As far as a goal? I guess the goal would be to continue to try to expose people to new interesting music through interesting videos and make some friends along the way…