Donna, sweetness of the world, grabbed it and handed it to me.
Message Sahara Horse When Pisco King Green Booty Sad Splatter If Only Tureen (got a lil flubbed) Sauce ASH!(for which Anna, and I got stares of "what the hell kind of hash are *they* on" =+) Author Car Psycho ~~~~~~~~ not written on Ji's set but on murrays (now annas) was the encore Mich Hold Genny
quite a bit of banter but not as much as I like (you can never get enough) on varies topics. We were debated wether or not to tape the show with a hand recorder but they said that if we went to our cars we pay to get back in =+(. other than that, the staff was pretty niceas well. It was so wonderful to finally see them in an intimate venue and that allowed freer post show chat time. I wasn't all nervous about holding ppl up.
The only thing that kind of bit was the wierdness of it all. First anna and I didn't want to dance b/c the ppl stting behind us couldn't see. after a while, though, our backs hurt and it was KOS so we decided screw it and motioned to the others to stand which they did. We were in the front so it was weird being right up in Jians face. We talked about it afterwards and he said it was like playing at a basement party =+). And of course, Anna and I felt dumb for thrashing about and getting odd stares from Jian and Murray but it was fun and Murray just laughed at us when we spoke to him later that night.
All in all, I was/am/and will be in a state of frubliss for a bit from this show. Im not going to have much time before Thursday's Vault show!
See ya loves!
The Lure of the Open Road
Review -- 6.22.99, The Nocturnal Cafe at the Abyss
Virginia Beach, VA
This is as good a time as any to mention that the floor on the front passenger side of Ellen's Subaru is littered with directions to Fruvous gigs. I'm the navigator and swapper of CDs.
A while back we got the idea that it would be a good thing to take part of a day off work to go to the Fruvous show in Virginia Beach. Ellen tried to convince a few others of this, but it ended up not working; most people are more committed to their jobs and so forth. Hell, even I thought about bailing.
I'm ever so glad we made the effort.
We both knew this was going to be a hellish drive, so we stopped in Fredricksburg, about 70 miles out of DC, and dropped our junk at a hotel and changed out of work clothes. From there, we went to a Denny's to grab some hot food. Note to self: when ordering eggs with stuff in them, always remember to double check for alien things such as gravy in the list of stuff. It's always there, but you never see it until it's too late. Shudder.
The drive between Fredricksburg and Virginia Beach is unremarkable; indeed, the only wrinkle came when I misread the instructions and saw "284" as "248," leading us to believe we had missed our exit some 40 exits back. I didn't say I was a *good* navigator.
(Actual concert info starts here, for those keeping score.)
We got to the venue about 8:15, but the doors were late opening, which would be a theme for the evening. After we got our wrist bracelets identifying us as Legal to Drink, we paid our $5 and went inside.
The place was really dark and really small, but not cramped. Two TVs showed _Men in Black_ with the sound down. We talked to Tobey for a bit, looked at the new tees, wondered why Cal wasn't puttering around, and snagged the table closest to the bathrooms, between Stage Mike and Dave, but at the same time, still managing to be Stage Jian. Oddly shaped stage, with lighting trees perched on either side. The walls appeared to be painted in several shades of blue, with early-60s inspired patterns.
Later I decided to purchase a tee, ended up with the URL design in the burgundy. Of course, under the combo of black light and lights with colored gels, the burgundy looked alternately gray and purple. It was around this time that Tobey referred to me as a "Professional Fruhead."
The coolest thing about the lighting was that it made everybody look tanned. The long wait made us look rested and ready: I began to think it was in the contract that they didn't have to start playing until after _Men in Black_ had finished.
Sure enough, a few minutes after the credits rolled, the opener took the stage. I wasn't expecting much, he was one guy with a guitar and he wasn't Dan Bern. He looked more like somebody's little brother.
He introduced himself as "Gus, from LA" and started singing. The crowd kept chattering, but Gus wasn't at all ruffled. He won us over with the bird calls at the end of the first song, and by the time he closed with a spontaneous sing-along of the chorus of 'Leavin' on a Jet Plane' I was sold.
The coolest moment with Gus was when an audience member called out the name of one of his songs when he said he was going to do one more. He asked how she knew that song, and she said she had his CD. He seemed genuinely surprised, almost shocked, and very happy so he played the song.
Gus is a competent songwriter, decent guitarist and an engaging performer. He reminds me a bit of a young Peter Case, if Peter Case had done relationship songs. He seemed really pleased with the crowd, and he stayed to see the Fruvous set.
Fruvous took the stage about 10:30, maybe 10:45, and the room filled up with welcome cheers from the crowd of roughly 80.
"Wow, it's good to be back in a club," Jian started.
I'd longed see Fruvous in a small place with a good crowd; I really thought I'd have to go out west someplace in order to find such a show, imagine getting such a gift in my home state. Wow.
They began with Message, nice tight harmonies as usual. I hadn't heard it in a while, and it was like a breath of fresh air last night, though I had been getting tired of it last year.
Sahara featured Dave's very nice electric guitar work. *swoon* There I go again. I didn't know the electric could make me swoon.
Horseshoes with no keyboard. I admit that I prefer the song with the keys, but it was a nice, tight version. Jian sang that last "Look straight..." close to the mic rather than letting the audience take it. I think the audience could have done it, since it comes at the end of the song, and I'll tell you, from the "Jet Plane" chorus, it was clear that the audience could sing pretty well.
I figured Moon would be included in the set because of the big moon figure hanging over the bar. I mean, duh. When the pitch pipe came out, we knew it was time. Mike introduced, very standard version except for Murray's beeping. Moon's a little tired at this point, IMO.
When the guys came on, Mike seemed to be wearing one of Murr's shirts, and Jian sported some slacks he must have swiped from Greg Brady. Jian, apparently unaware that *gray* is this year's black, remarked that brown was coming back in style, and so was red, referring to his pants.
Mike went off about Twiggy, and Murray proposed that "Mike's" shirt and Jian's pants were part of an "ensemble." He used the French pronunciation, but not a French accent, which I thought was cute for some reason that's lost on me. The word just tumbled out.
In any case, they mentioned the new record, and August 10th to cheers, but I'm thankful to report that Jian left out the "big fans of August 10th" joke.
When She Talks got a lukewarm response. I know I'm on record defending this song that many seem to dislike, but damn, the vocal needs work in the phrasing if it's ever going to really succeed. (harsh)I understand what they lyrics are going for, but when the words are heard and not read, the words need help from the singer. Get with the program. (/harsh)
Pisco is always fun, strudel/noodle bridge still there. I still didn't miss it, but it's bugging me a little less. "Lots of Americans" intro.
King/Green got the crowd on its feet. King was the only song from Bargainville. (Can I get an AMEN?) Fairly standard. Dave came out wearing the Fruvous fishing hat, which made me smile. "Stars call me up." I shrugged violently at "are you curious about the epilogue?" but there were a lot of new-ish folks in the crowd who might actually have been curious, which was cool.
I love the "short" GE&H for the bass line. Tonight's Not The Beatles break was funny:
"How dare you insult the Beatles here in Virginia Beach, home of the World Famous Beatles Museum, even though it looks like a converted Subway with the yellow awning. How dare you insult Mike?" Jian started, and Mike went off on a Liverpudlian tear for almost a minute.
"OK, so you haven't affected Mike one bit this time."
Mr. Cheese shrugged and said "I don't like the Beatles."
Boo/Sad/Splatter No, this wasn't a medley. It was nice to hear Boo Time instead of Minnie. Sad, I hate it less with the big keyboard. Splatter continues to improve with practice. I think this song is going to be a lot of fun, it still reminds me a little of Michigan Militia.
Jian was on tonight with the conversation. When he thanked Gus for his set, he said "We want to say this while he's still here, so he can hear this..." and then trailed off a little.
"Jesus...?" That might have been the moment of the show. Then he continued, intimating that Gus could score tonight with little or no effort, were he interested. Fruvous was effusive in its admiration of Gus, which was gratifying for the crowd that had recieved him so warmly.
If Only was probably the weakest song of the night, it seemed slower, heavier than usual, as if Mike was tired.
They had problems starting Tureen, so Jian suggested a little AC/DC to cleanse the palate. Dave broke out into a bluegrassed version of "You Shook Me All Night Long," which anybody who attended Fruvous and Friends for Choice '99 will recognize as a cornerstone of the Banjo Medley, then Dave dedicated Tureen to all the remaining Deadheads, saying this song had something they could relate to. Ellen, being one of them, was a little confused what the Present Tense Tureen has to do with the Dead, but we enjoyed it anyway.
It dawned on me that this was, possibly, an admission that, yes indeed, the PTT just might be about, um, recreational pharmaceuticals. Recalling a months-ago intro in which Dave said that his mom asked if that song was about drugs and he denied it, I couldn't stop laughing.
Just a personal note about Saucep'n: last night was the first time I got through the chorus. The second time I did most of it in one breath. That was kind of cool.
Ash Hash was definitely the surprise of the evening. Dave told a little story as an introduction:
"We were walking down the street today and a man asked if we were high on drugs. So I said 'As a matter of fact we're low on drugs. We were hoping you could set us up.' " The song itself was hysterical, though Jian commented that they'd screwed it up. Dave said he thought the songwriter would be very pleased with their rendition. It was about this time when he noted how the black light showed the lint on the clothes of various audience members, and "the Led Zepplin poster in the back." I'll admit that I turned around to look.
Authors was tight: "my crucifiction." "Who needs a grave?"
"She's a Good Shag" Improv > Get in the Car The improv part was one part Austin Powers (i.e. one part innuendo) and one part Disney. Mary Poppins and Unspeakable Acts were involved. Very freaky, but as I like to say, in a good way. Dave took it straight into Car, nicely done, always one of my favorite songs live.
Psycho was the standard closer, I've heard better but that hardly matters. Standard 'thanks for coming out, new people' intro. I kind of wish he'd added an extra thanks for the regulars who hauled themselves from god-knows-where to Virginia Beach on a Tuesday night
Before Michigan, Jian remarked that they'd done away with the tradition of taking a shower before the encore. Murray said they'd actually done it behind the amps, but were afraid of being observed. (Murray was quiet tonight, possibly in correlation to his unusually subdued attire, but he grinned almost the entire show.)
Before IWHO, Jian asked for requests, then said they weren't going to play any of those songs. IWHO still gets me sometimes, last night was one of those times. Some of the backing vocals were back on this version, mostly from Dave.
My Poor Generation, of course, I shouted out for this during the request period. Smug? Who me? As an intro, Dave asked if anybody had just graduated from HS or College, and whether those folks knew what they wanted to do with their lives. Most of them indicated they didn't, so Dave snarked that he felt safe with the future in their hands. I love this song and it works for me as a closer.
It was a nice way to end this set. We chatted with Mary and Clare for a few minutes and then headed back to our hotel, some two hours away.
As we drove along I-64 listening to Soul Coughing in the middle of the night, I watched the moon sink closer and closer to the horizon, getting bigger and darker as it went down. It was dark out there, the sky was salted with stars.
That's something most people don't see from their bedroom windows at 2:30 a.m., and for me, it's part of the lure of the open road.
--Amanda, on 45 minutes sleep, a catnap and a coffee buzz
Hullo! I haven't been here in a long time.
This is pretty jumbled up, but oh well...
I finally convinced Mom to really take me to a show, and VA Beach is what it ended up being. We got there sort of early (before Gus even) and we tried to go to Fat Daddy's but it was sort of too swanky psanky for us. That is, it was expensive. We returned to the club in time to see a bunch of people in a car pull up to the bouncer and ask, "Who's playing tonight?" the bouncer replied, "I don't know, i can't pronouce the name. There's some posters over there." I helpfully informed the carfolks that it was Moxy Fruvous. I had a sore throat, so i dunno if they really got it, but I was more useful than the bouncer at least =). The Abyss was kind of blinding at first, they had all these black lights and red lights and blue lights and really any sort of light that's not white. Amanda immediately saw me and said Hi and such on, then Mom and went over to talk to Tobey. I got a FruMiles card, and Tobey and I both got on mom's case for not taking me to the Baltimore show. After a while, "Gus" came out-- funny looking chap, he had a nice voice, but I didn't like his style of music very much. he was deliighted to hear that some girl in the audience had a CD of his, and halfway through one of his songs, Fruvous came in the front door and EVERYBODY turned to look at them (or at least look at what everyone else was looking at), and Gus got totally ignored. Still, he seemed to like the crowd. Fruvous came on and played and I can't remember the set list's order but there's one somewhere on the ng anyway. Jian noticed that Murray had his own personal red light over in the corner "look at Murray!" "whoooooaaa..". Jian then told a story which he insisted nobody put on the internet, so i can't tell you guys (but it was really funny!=P) that had to do with red lights. They started doing this thing about the song "Cinnamon Girl", until one of them said, "they don't know Cinnamon Girl," ( reffering to the audience) and it stopped. Mom was quietly protesting that she DID know Cinnamon Girl, and on the way home, we heard it on the radio =). Jian kept quoting old presidents to make points, like Nixon said something about a "a clear majority", which he used in reference to how many the audience hadn't seen them before. Some guy kept saying that Nixon hadn't really said 'a CLEAR majority', but had said a something else majority instead, I don't remember what, Jian had a pretty hard time getting him to be quiet. I got up and started dancing at about the third song, and then stayed up pretty much the rest of the set. get in the Car was a bunch of fun to dance to, plus MBLABOA. At the 9:30 Club, there was no space whatsoever to dance, so it was really fun when i could. At the beginning of ?Splatter Splatter? I leaned over to Mom as Dave took out the accordian and pointed it out to her. dave grinned and said something which i can't quite remember. Somewhere in the middle of the show, Jian broke one of his drumsticks and decided to give the other one to some crowd member. He thought it should go to "someone who's never seen the band before, but now thinks they're pretty okay", and there was this girl screaming her head off in the 3rd row and he said "not loves the band, but thinks they're 'just all right'." boy was she bummed. so Mom realized she qualified (well, she actually REALLY liked the band, but she didn't want to point that out to Jian) and she started waving her hands and all, and Jian gave her the drumstick, which she obligingly said i could use. I play the drums. During GE&H, at the not the beatles part, Jian was telling Dave "look what you did to Mike!" Mike was sort of babbling about I don't remember what in a British-esque voice. after Mike had talked for a bit, Jian said, "Okay, so you didn't do that much to Mike. But USUALLY he would be offended by callous words like that!" The AC/DC at mach 2 with the banjo was very nice-- never really thought much of that song normally, but boy was it cool like that! =) After the guys had gone off, before any encores, all the guys except Dave crouched behind the sound guy's switchboard instead of going backstage or wherever it was that Dave went. when they came out for the encore, Jian started talking about the tradition of bands going and taking showers and then coming out for encores. Someone said "You smell so much better!" to Jian (who?). I recoil from anything on the topic of how Jian smells. =). Jian then was saying that either showering or crouching behind the sound guy in full view of the entire audience would do. Jian:"'Do you think they can see us?'" Murray:"'oh no, I think he saw me!'" It was especially funny since really EVERYBODY could see them and they were pretty darn obvious. After the show, pretty much everyone left, leaving about ten people still in the club (I doubt anyone knew the lads would come out to talk to ppl). Mom and I hung around and i bought a nice neon orange FruShirt. Orange is my favourite color. Jian, BTW, does not know what his favourite color is. =) After a bit, Jian came out to talk to people. He was talking to some people near Mom and I and Mom goes, "hey, go talk to MustardMan", after I had told her the MustardGirl story. I hadn't thought to bring teresa, but it might have been fun to show her to Amanda (do you know that story, amanda?). Then Jian came over and talked to Mom and I. I told him my voice didn't actually sound like this (it had pretty much given up on me by the end of the concert, my sore throat was not happy with me =)). I actually expected him to start laughing when he first heard it (it's sadly funny) like Amanda and Ellen did. But, no. We talked a little bit, and he went to talk to other people. Mike came out but he was talking to someone about hockey, and Murray got pretty much surrounded (no offense to the surrounders or anything. good going.). I was bummed when i found out FruChild was there and i didn't meet her (awww). As Mom and I were driving to the hotel, we stopped at a red light (the lights in VA Beach are very strange. ALL the lights at a intersection stay red for like two minutes before one turns green again) and we were behind this car with a bunch of interesting bumper stickers which I tried to read, but I could only read the one that said "Fighting Gravity", which seemed really familiar. I thought that I'd seen someone at the club with a shirt like that or something. As we were driving up beside the car in question, i realized Murray was sitting in the back seat, which I noticed when trying to read this bumperstickerish thing which was in the window, but then there was no way i could read it without looking like I was staring at Murray, which would have been kinda rude. On the subject of Murray, when i told MG(trese) that he was the Bass Guy, she was like "oh? when we met him, I thought he seemed like one of those skinny guys with the highish voices". But he really is pretty skinny isn't he? I was looking at the fruvous purity test and I was counting how many things I had gotten on there. i don't remember them all, but I got a FruMiles Card, Mom got something from a band member, i got a shirt, I drove some quota of miles (one of them), i met someone from the internet and I got hit on by a band member! I'd say that pretty big improvment. =D
Well, anyway, someone has to fill in the spaces I forgot (amanda?=)).
Happy Happy fun fun. It's nice to write on the ng again.
Some other tidbits from the performance include: