22 May 2009

Watt: Balancing the pain by giving his share.

Phone photo by Pat Puke.

So I'm out there. I'm a tiny guy with a little bass trying to balance the pain by giving my share. -Slap Magazine Feb 2002

So I've passed up the chance to see a few legends recently. You know how it goes. Get home from work, destroyed, tonne of crap on your mind, who wants to go watch an old burn out disappoint you, cycle to work hung-over the next morning...? god I'm boring... but I always regret it. So I was determined to see Mike Watt last night.

I've listened to The Minutemen and Firehose a fair bit over the years but they were before my time and I was more of a casual listener but the more I read, hear and see of Watt the more he impresses me, so it was a go.

No one was really sure what to expect from The Missingmen or the 50+ year old Watt. Thankfully, we missed the first opening band and then the second band was just dire. Mindless droning copies of The Killers or Interpol or some shite. I was actually getting insulted. I mean, no offense to these four young men giving it their all and doing something they're passionate about but for fucks sake, give us some edge, or try to convince us your trying to forge into new ground and show us you'd at least bleed a little for your art. Just horrible.

Then The Missingmen came on and from "1,2 Surf's up" I watched everyone grin ear to ear. The band slayed it. Maybe, I'm old and nostalgic for things I never really was a part of, but the music was sounded so vital, so alive. No filler, just no stop hair-raising music for the whole set.

Watt ended the set with a praise to John Coltrane And ended the encore with "Start your own band."

Which I interpreted as, whatever you do, whether it is music, zine-making , making your own surfboards, take this man's example. Don't wait around for someone to make it happen, or something to come your way, give it 100% and seize life by the bollocks.

Thank You Mike Watt. RIP D Boon. Praise The Missingmen. I'm born again.