Free! Mudhoney! Insanity!

I got into the free Mudhoney concert at Nuemos on Monday, 20 minutes into Mudhoney’s set, and it was a blast!

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It was also the launch party for New Belgium Brewing Company’s Ranger IPA, and at first the ads were saying you had to buy a New Belgium brew at Moe Bar to get the free ticket to the show. Now, I can’t have beer these days due to the carbonation and my gut problem, so I was thinking I should bring someone and treat them to two beers, or treat someone who didn’t want to go to a beer, buy myself something I can drink, and go on the extra ticket.

Then the ads started saying free, and that the ticket for the beer wasn’t needed to get in, and would only get you in early; and I started thinking this sounded like insanity, remembering the crowd for the free show at West Seattle Fest last summer and knowing you couldn’t pack them all into Neumos.

So, I was having second thoughts. It’s going to be crazy. . . Too many people. . . No way will I ever get in. . . It’s late on a work night. . .

Seattle Weekly’s review kept me thinking about it though, and totally made me laugh, and remember how much fun and totally awesome this band is (ahem, cover your eyes if you’re easily offended):

Though Mark Arm may be the face of Mudhoney and Dan Peters its solid backbone, their essence, longevity and allure are all on the sinewy shoulders of one of the most unheralded, pillaged and plagiarized guitarists on the history of our sordid scene, Steve Turner. Mr. Turner has been giving music-loving ladies of Seattle girl boners for the last twenty-some years with his “better with age” good looks (unsuccessfully hidden by nerdy glasses) and guitar hooks so slutty they don’t bother wearing undies. It’s the band’s aggro-sexuality that most separates them from their G-word counterparts. Maybe, if that’s your thing, you can make love to Pearl Jam’s Ten, but you can GET IT ON to Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge. Mmm-mmm-mmm, ‘nuff said. With Sleepy Sun. Tickets available on FRIDAY when you get a New Belgium 1554 in Moe Bar. Tickets get you first in on the night of the show. MA’CHELL DUMA LAVASSAR
Mon., Feb. 8, 8 p.m., 2010

OK, even if she does diss Pearl Jam, one of my favorite bands, and totally neglects Guy Maddison (who’s underrated since he’s not an original member of Mudhoney), it is pretty funny. . .and reminds me why I want to see the show, even if I have seen them twice in the last 6 months!

“. . . guitar hooks so slutty they don’t bother wearing undies. . .”!

OK, I know what you’re thinking, and don’t worry that punch line’s coming up later in the post. . .and I’m the one so priggish I always spell out South Lake Union Trolley. . . Yes, someone was wearing a “Ride the S. . .” t-shirt to the show.

I didn’t finally decide to go until midday Friday, as Neumos was tweeting about the free Mudhoney show.  Then I started talking myself into it. I had to take care of a few things first, though, so I was running late. When I realized it was going to be 9:20 pm when I got there, and the show started at 9 pm, I thought, “No way.” Still, I got in the long and slowly moving line, or rather one of the long lines (there was a separate one for people with the free tickets from the beer company).

By 11 pm, when Mudhoney started playing, some people had given up and left (which, considering the club was at capacity all night, was probably the intelligent thing to do), all those with tickets were let in, and I was right at the head of the remaining line. Yes, I was the one they cut the line off at. Well, it has to be someone. . .

They were at capacity, but there was still a chance they might still let someone in. Besides, I could hear the music pretty good, and figured at least I’d catch a few songs before they sent us away. . .

I know they started on this one, although I missed Mark Arm’s plea for the tragic situation in New Belgium they were playing this benefit for. ; ) Little did Mark know how tragic it was. While I was waiting earlier a guy with a ticket came out and told his friends ahead of me in line they were giving away the New Belgium Ranger IPAs and they were all out of beer (or at least that beer). The guy with a ticket bought his friends some food from the Fish Fry next door to Neumos to eat while waiting, and they all got in before the show started.

I could hear this one from outside as well:

So I was outside, hanging out with security, hearing some of the music. It was kind of like tabling some shows for Amnesty International. Although, a lot crazier. Security was definitely being kept busy that night. A free show at capacity, a long line of people without tickets still hoping to get in, they promised the brewery lady they’d let anyone with tickets in, no matter how late they got there, a few people trying to slip in anyways, and one actual fight, or at least a guy getting punched. 

Now, here’s what gets me about the 3 “observe and report” bus tunnel “security officers” who let the 15 year old girl get beat up and robbed right in front of them (well, one the things, that’s for another entry). . .at Neumos when a guy punched someone, security physically brought him out of the club and the guy who was punched to talk to the police who they called. One guy was claiming to us in line the guy who was punched had it coming because he was mouthing off and had been warned, but I don’t consider that an excuse. If he’s disruptive enough, let security deal with it, but it’s a club show, you can move away. . .

Security was kept busy inside as well, especially pulling people off stage all night (in the song above, as Mark Arm sings “Keep it out of my face!”).  I’d hate to see what the show would have been like if Neumos had a hands off, “observe and report” security detail. . .

I did get in! Somebody handed me a golden ticket! No, better yet, a New Belgium ticket! A young guy started walking in, saw the line outside and joked about how much would his ticket go for, then asked who wants to be his best friend for life, he had an extra ticket to give away. The young guys behind me all said I should get it, since I was first in line. I asked the security guy, and it was okay.

So, after 2 hours, 20 minutes into Mudhoney’s set, I walk in and there they’re going full steam on stage. I’m able to get up fairly close on Guy’s side of the stage (and even had first a drink of water, then a drink after the first song, finding my way back in a little after getting rid of the plastic cups).

Oh, yeah, they were playing this one when I entered:

After just blowing my image on this blog. . . Oh, well, I’ve never left any delusions on the young part here, but. . .

The Stranger, by the way, usually smuttier than the Weekly, referred to the band as “sweet old things” . . .

What I love about these guys is they’re just consistently good. They just come out and completely rock the crowd all night. This is the Seattle audience other people imagine, given our long history of rock; not the politely standing around looking halfway bored Seattle audience those of us who live here know too well.

They rocked out right through their encore, closing on this one, which I actually YouTubed myself:

I’m just amazed how the band never misses a beat while security is pulling all those people off stage all evening, either.

It was over fairly early for a club show, and I caught a bus around 12:30 am, that almost didn’t get going for awhile as some guy was arguing with the driver over brining his ice cream cone on board, then after he finally ditched that, his buddies trying to talk him out of eating the rest of his fast food on the bus, so the rest of us could get home. . .

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