In Idle Time’s earliest days, I was tasked with creating a punk rock primer for JH (not to be confused with JLH), who himself grew up on early 80’s SoCal punk and was, like me, interested in a retrospective. This was back when we played around with “The Institute” moniker as being truly indicative of a place of learning. Course materials included CD Stompers, crayons, and cover charges to countless pilsner-soaked dive bars.
One of those bars, Thee Parkside, is still soaked in beer and loud music, and, with the recent patio expansion, is one of the best places in The City to hang out and see live bands.
Last night, while scanning venue calendars for a show, I came across The Angry Samoans headlining a punk rock triple-bill at Thee Parkside. Were these the same Angry Samoans that appeared as a footnote in JH’s punk chronicles? These guys were performing in the late 70’s… Apparently, some punk bands refuse to die, and they just ride a rubbery bassline through the dementia.
The Good. One of the openers, M Section from Sonoma County, reminded me of all the “field research” I used to do in the early aughts. These guys were intent on having a good time, even without their signature luchador masks. Judging by the ebb and flow of the audience, this band was clearly the main draw. And they closed their set with a crowd-pleasing metal number for good measure. Your “new” single is going to sound just as new to me as anything else you’ve hammered away on tonight, so thanks for immediately complying with my buttrock preference.
The Bad. One of the roadies who was doing the set change for the Angry Samoans was a shriveled, crazy old man in jean shorts and a grimy A’s cap. He looked like a MUNI transient on speed. The crazy old man was the Angry Samoans lead singer. I can imagine, once upon a time, this guy ripping up photos of Ronald Reagan onstage at 924 Gilman. On this night, in a pathetically deranged display, he produced a vinyl Kobe Bryant backpack and demanded that someone in the audience come up and destroy it.
“Kobe Bryant is the enemy!” Nobody budged, so he feebly kicked it over in the direction of his twenty-something replacement guitar player, who seemed to be performing a full-body eyeroll all night long.
Crazy old Peeved Samoan was joined on the drumkit by what I could only guess was another original member. But I swear… he looks just like the stocky bald guy who operates the butcher counter at Cal-Mart.
The Ugly. Three-dollar bacon-wrapped hotdogs from Mission street vendors. Covered in onions and jalapenos. They only seem like a good idea at the time…