Published in The Coaster, Asbury Park NJ, October 11 2018
SOUNDS: DOYLE at the Wonder Bar
You don’t have to be in the Halloween-season spirit to feel a sense of Jersey pride in the lasting legacy of The Misfits, the horrorpunkmetal icons who lurched on out of Lodi to (almost) quietly become the biggest thing in the Garden State punkin patch since You-Know-Who (we’re referring of course to The Knickerbockers) before their initial implosion in the early 1980s. While the past 30 years have seen Misfits guitarist Doyle Wolfgang von Frankenstein recombining in numerous contexts with co-founder Glenn Danzig and with Doyle’s brother/ Misfit bassist Jerry Only, these days the face-painted guitar “Annihilator” is busy fronting his own band Doyle, with ex-Cancerslug singer Alex Story — and TONIGHT, October 11, “The Hulking Monster Himself” visits Lance and Debbie’s cicuit landmark Wonder Bar, in a 7 pm show that boasts Zombie Mafia for openers — and for which admission ($20) can be had at the door or wonderbarasburypark.com. Then take it to officialdoyle.com, for details on available VIP Meet & Greet packages.
SOUNDS: SiriusXM Hair Nation Tour at the Stone Pony
Just days after an allstar crew of hardrock coverband veterans performed a special “Birch Hill Reunion” salute inside the Stone Pony, the famous stage hosts a package of real-deal veterans from those hair-band wars of the 1980s MTV era. Presented by SiriusXM and hosted by satellite radio personality Eddie Trunk, the Hair Nation Club Tour brings together a bill that’s headlined by “Once Bitten Twice Shy” guys Jack Russell’s Great White (pictured — and if you’re wondering, this is the heir to the version of the band that was involved in that tragic Rhode Island nightclub fire in 2003), amply supported by the Bullet Boys (“Smooth Up In Ya”), Enuff Z’nuff (“New Thing”), and End of Sin. It all happens TONIGHT, October 11, with tickets for the 7 pm event ($30) available at the door or stoneponyonline.com.
STAGES: Whose Live Anyway? at the Paramount Theatre
Inspired by the l-o-n-g running TV sensation Whose Line Is It Anyway?, the touring show Whose Live Anyway? finds a pair of perennial presences from that improv comedy institution — both the American network edition and its original British template — working without that scripted net, on the stage of the Paramount Theatre. Fast-thinking masters of mayhem Ryan Stiles and Greg Proops are joined by veteran Whose Line guest Jeff B. Davis and sitcom stalwart Joel Murray TONIGHT, October 11, in a low-budget/ high-octane evening of audience favorites (and perhaps a couple of “you can’t do that on TV” specialties) that, you can be assured, will draw a portion of its eccentric energy from you and your neighbors in the seats. Tickets ($27-$87) from ticketmaster.com.
Extending the top-down, open-air summertime concert season well into the time of the Great Pumpkin, the Stone Pony SummerStage closes out the 2018 schedule and strikes the set with a Friday evening tour stop by Modest Mouse, the Pacific Northwest indie-sensation sextet (fronted, as ever, by Isaac Brock) that’s marking its 25th anniversary with a major tour that steamrolls gloriously through its intriguing catalog and sometimes tumultuous history. The 6 pm show is bookended by two pre- and post- sets inside the Pony proper, with Flycatcher appetizing things at 5:30 pm, and Asbury’s own Dentist doing a final brush ‘n floss at 10 pm. Tickets ($46-$116) at the door or stoneponyonline.com.
SOUNDS: Kiss the Sky, at Monmouth University
While it’s safe to say that there will never be another Jimi Hendrix, many who’ve witnessed a performance by Jimy Bleu attest that the left-handed guitarist channels the game-changing Seattle southpaw better than any other pretender to the cosmic throne — and with Kiss the Sky: Ultimate Hendrix Tribute, Bleu teams with an expert rhythm section for a detail-intensive “Re-Experience” that effectively recreates the sounds (and the sartorial styles) of Hendrix and company during that tumultuous year of 1968. Hosted on the stage of Monmouth University’s Pollak Theatre, the Saturday concert is a three-set performance that includes a salute to the classic double LP Electric Ladyland, as well as a salute to Jimi’s Band of Gypsys project, and a Best of Hendrix retrospective that finds the band joined by guitarist Billy Thoden of the Cream tribute Heavy Cream. Thoden and bandmates open the 8 pm event with a set that honors the 1968 double-LP milestone Wheels of Fire — and for extra authenticity’s sake, the players are attired in precise reproductions of the original bands’ outfits, while performing on period-perfect instruments and amp stacks. Tickets to the 8 pm performance ($25-$50) can be reserved through the Monmouth box office at 732-263-6889, or online at www.monmouth.edu/arts.
STAGES: Kathleen Madigan at the Paramount Theatre
In an interview we conducted with Kathleen Madigan several years back, the hard-touring standup comic compared the audiences she faced in theaters and at comedy-club venues; telling us that “a theater crowd, they’re there because they know who you are and they paid good money to see you. They’re paying attention, they’re into it. In the clubs, a lot of people come to drink, just to go to the club. Especially the midnight show on Friday — they’re all completely hammered before you begin.”
Fortunately for the veteran of countless cable specials, late-night talkfests and multiple seasons of Last Comic Standing, she’ll be spending her Friday night (and making her Asbury Park debut) in a theater-size setting; purveying her brand of sardonic and cheerfully cheeky perspectives under the Paramount Theatre proscenium. Scheduled for 8 pm, it’s a stop on her current Boxed Wine and Bigfoot Tour that happens on the heels of her new Netflix special Bothering Jesus plus some very high profile TV guest shots (Stephen Colbert, Comedians in Cars) even as it presages her all-new forthcoming tour set Hot Dogs and Angels). Take it to ticketmaster.com for reservations ($23-$43 to the October 12 show.
It began as a controversial vehicle for former Sex Pistols frontman John “Johnny Rotten” Lydon to shed/shred the accrued baggage of his public persona, in a highly experimental post-punk project that represented a collaboration with Clash co-founder Keith Levene and the Dub-inspired bass master Jah Wobble. It would take many forms over the years; imploding and recombining in the wake of some riot-worthy gigs and revolving-door personnel shifts — including, at various times, Shore session keyboardist Tommy Zvoncheck and London-to-NJ transplant Martin Atkins. And earlier this year, a new edition of Public Image Ltd. rose again from the dead, with a North American tour whose Asbury Park date — Saturday, October 13 at Asbury Lanes — sold out in what seemed like ten seconds.
The show is part of The Public Image is Rotten Tour, a road trip geared to promote a documentary film of that same name — and one night after the fracas on Fourth Avenue, Asbury ‘s downtown arthouse screening space The Showroom exhibits Tabbert Fiiller’s study of the ever-compelling frontman and the ongoing experiment that is PiL. The 103-minute film shows for a single 7:30 pm screening on October 14, with available tickets reserved at the theater’s box office window, or at theshowroomap.com.
SOUNDS: Guided By Voices at Asbury Lanes
In a rescheduling of a postponed gig from this past August, the Midwest indie-rock institution Guided By Voices makes a long-awaited debut at the revamped Asbury Lanes with a humpday hootenanny this coming Wednesday, October 17. Returning to Asbury Park for the second time since a now-legendary 2014 Stone Pony gig that saw the dissolution of the band’s reunited “classic” lineup (a meltdown rant/rave captured for posterity on a Yahoo livestream), sixty-something schoolteacher turned late-innings rockstar Robert Pollard has reteamed once more with guitar lieutenant Doug Gillard (who previously powered GBV through its most radio-ready period) in a satisfying revamp of the band’s mid/late 90s configuration.
Their last local time out on the stage of the House of Independents, Pollard and company upped the rock-star ante, showed some arena-scaled ambitions (and scaled back the onstage alcohol consumption a tad), in a set that drew from some 30 years of twisted history, even as it climaxed with an epic take on The Who’s “Baba O’Reilly.” With literally hundreds of albums, EPs, box sets, singles and surprises to mine (including GBV releases, solo sessions, and countless side-gig projects), the hyper-prolific Pollard remains the elder-statesman master of the low-fi, two-minute masterpiece — and when this never-predictable combo hits on all cylinders, the entirety of America becomes their big and wide-open garage. Catch ‘em now, before they release eight more albums by next week (seriously, they’ve got at least three more LPs of material ready to drop right now). Park Doing floats the first note for the show, with doors at 7:30 pm and tickets ($25) still available at asburylanes.com.
First of all, no, the Indigo Girls have NOT broken up, as witness the busy itinerary of live dates that the still-touring folkpop duo have been performing lately (including a stop in Englewood this past Tuesday) — but on Wednesday, October 17, founding member Emily Saliers takes an intriguing little detour off the main road, when the singer/ songwriter/ multi-instrumentalist hits the stage of Monmouth University’s Pollak Theatre in a solo session that’s being presented absolutely FREE of charge. Produced by the Bruce Springsteen Archive and Center for American Music at MU, the 7:30 pm concert finds Saliers gigging behind her debut album Murmuration Nation; a set that sees the veteran vocalist offering her perspective on divided communities and reassuring relationships, even as she experiments with newly groove-conscious sounds and styles. Journalist and historian Robert Santelli (formerly of the Asbury Park Press and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; now of the Grammy Museum) hosts a post-show Q&A with the artist; call the Monmouth box office at 732-263-6889, or visit www.monmouth.edu/artsfor updated info.
All this, on a week that offers up the latest and most ambitious ever edition of ASBURY UNDERGROUND Art & Music Crawl (see the detailed delve elsewhere on the upperWETside), as well as sold-out events featuring NINJA BRIAN’S ALL STAR LUAU SPECTACULAR (House of Independents, Friday), PUBLIC IMAGE LTD. (Asbury Lanes, Saturday), and NOTHING BUT THIEVES (pictured; House of Indies, Saturday), …but there’s still room for the Asbury return of ska stalwarts THE TOASTERS (AP Brewery, Saturday), a FISHTONES record release ron-day-voo (Anchors Bend, Saturday), an entry in the Stone Pony’s annual ROCK TO THE TOP Competition with six bands PLUS after-show by Blazetrain (Sunday) — and, if you’re feeling in the mood for something classically different, a dinner-and-show jazz evening with the AL HOLMES TRIO, at Billy Brown’s all-new downtown Asbury affair, the Brown Performing Arts Center (Saturday). And, need we add, the monthlong-and-then-some Oktoberfest celebration continues apace at Asbury Festhalle Biergarten, where several generations of the region’s premier polka purveyors entertain all weekend long. Catch all the particulars in the October 11 print edition of THE COASTER — then come crawling back for MORE, each and every Thursday, as Asbury Park’s fightin’ weekly fun-tab heps you to the NEXT round of music, movies, art happenings, and popular entertainments!