Hot and sticky…sweet?

 So we made the trip to the People’s Republic of Irvine to see what sort of creatures would emerge from the 20 year shadow of hairband glory past.  The first mild shock was that the crowd was kinda yuppie.  I”ll chalk that up to one part Irvine, one part $90 ticket price (that was face value on our tix for in the nosebleeds), and one part aging rockers making the pragmatic transition to Corporate America.  Most the people actually making an effort to play the part of glam-rock fan were doing so ironically – either 30/40 somethings mocking earlier versions of themselves or 20 somethings mocking that which they hardly ever knew…other than what they’ve gleaned from the probing journalistic insight of VH1’s Behind the Music.  A handful looked like actual legit rockers…the tattoos were real…the leather pants looked like they were a regular staple in the rotation…but they were clearly in the minority — and back in the 80’s it was a hell of a lot easier to tell the difference between glam-rocker and bourgeois soccer mom.  In the new millenium – even in the Orange County – it’s a fuzzy line.   

The biggest surprise of the evening was one of the guys I drove to the show with.  Dude had memorized every word to every Poison lyric, every note to every Poison song, and every word to the aforementioned VH1 Poison – Behind the Music.  He was a walking talking lexicon of Poison knowledge and trivia – could actually quote Behind the Music.  Sounds scary but he was one of those infectious undeniable spirits and next thing we knew we were all banging our heads and leaning in to sing the chorus of Every Rose…a truly BROMENTOUS occasion. 

Quien es mas macho?

Quien es mas macho?

And shit, what can I say?  Poison was fun.  They played what people wanted – didn’t bore anyone with new material, just played the old hit singles – and related pretty well to the audience.  Cheap trick did the same.  The big disappointment of the evening (assuming I had any expectations to begin with) was Def Leppard.  They blew.  Tried to play new music that no one but the most hardcore fans had heard of or cared about.  Didn’t really interact with the crowd.  Streamed cheesy shots of lingerie models on the video screen – this, in particular – was really tricky to understand because the images weren’t erotic or even ironic…it was just lame.  Ultimately, it seemed that most of the band was content just to show off the results of their P90X workouts.  Overall, a sterile (perhaps impotent?) and uninspired performance that completely wasted the amusement and surprisingly innocent level of fun and entertainment we had achieved with the two opening bands.  Watching grown men act like the “real housewives of the OC’ dovetailed well with the predominantly botox injected demographic in the audience… but by the time we made our way back to the car, I just felt depressed.  Aging rockers can be a sad sight.


~ by El Pollo Rico on September 4, 2009.

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