May 2011

Another Left Turn at Albuquerque Rock City

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Despite my agoraphobic (that means I'm afraid of fuzzy sweaters) record weirdo tendencies, I got out of the house recently to see Social Distortion at the Historic Sunshine Theatre in Dynamic Downtown Albuquerque. I hadn't seen them in years. I think the last time I saw SD, the drummer was Chuck Biscuits. There is no significance in that and it may not even be true, but I believe that Chuck Biscuits is one of the greatest stage names in history and wanted to say so. It's up there with Muddy Waters and Slim Pickens.

SD (I'm not comfortable with the term "Social D," it sounds contagious) has changed a lot, and not just because of the revolving door membership. For the first time ever, I could not reconcile the band onstage with the Social Distortion that I used to see playing in living rooms and backyards. Mike Ness is no longer recognizable as the gloomy 10th grader in my 9th grade Science class and I mean that in the nicest possible way. All in all, I really enjoyed the show. I liked the extended guitar solos, the big rock production values, and the acoustic set with accordion. I've seen them way back when and I've seen them now. They're better now. If you disagree, you're delusional.

I predict that within five years, Social Distortion will add a horn section.


This may sound extremely unhip to say, which is justification enough for me, but I am looking forward to the family-friendly outdoor concert series at the Albuquerque Zoo this summer. So there. The Blasters are playing the zoo in June, Big Sandy in July, and Junior Brown sometime - I'll have my fact-checker work on that. The Meat Puppets are coming to town soon, but they're not playing at the zoo. Darn. I'll probably go see them anyway.

On the record weirdo front, here are some updates from last time. Krazy Kat Records did not go out of business as I reported, they just moved. I guess they move a lot. I found the store to be not nearly as scuzzy as previous reviewers declared it to be - there were no discarded syringes or diapers and no chickens. Don't believe everything you read on the internet, even if I wrote it.

There is a place called Mecca Records, but they're hardly ever open, so I don't know enough about it to even make something up.

"I Buy Music" is a fairly large store with a huge vinyl inventory. I like the store but I think it has a really bad name. I would suggest something less generic, like "Leaky Roof Records," or something with more imagination, like "I Eat Music." Anyway, they have a separate room down a pigeon-crap-encrusted alley that houses their 1 to 2 dollar budget bin. It's not just a record store - it's an adventure.

There is a store across town called "DVD something-or-other" (not their real name) that advertises used CD's, but they really don't have much. I probably have more CD's in my glove compartment at any given time than they have on the racks. Bad selection, too - we're talking Mariah Carey Christmas Album bad. Based on my first impression, the place is really just a front for renting porno movies to old guys in cowboy hats that drive dusty pick-up trucks. If you're looking for a copy of "Truck Stop Trollops" or "Farm Fresh Floozies," you'll probably find it there.

Sometimes I amaze even myself. I have to admit that those are darn clever fake porn titles, I either unknowingly stole them from somewhere or I missed my true calling.

Oh, and one more thing: