He’s the man! He’s the man! He’s so bad he should be in detention! … Uh wait, what was I saying?
Right. Saw Jello Biafra at Lee’s the other night. Round One of my mid-week madness, if you’re keeping track at home. I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect, though I’d sorta been tipped off ahead of time that he wouldn’t be playing a whole buncha Dead Kennedys covers. On that note, I was pleasantly surprised; he played pretty much all the DK songs you’d wanna hear (considering his aversion for “retro” and all), albeit saving most of them for his two encores.
That’s right, the man–and his band, The Guantanamo School of Medicine–played two encores the other nite. Shit, even Iron Maiden doesn’t do that anymore! In any case, he covered off “Holiday in Cambodia,” “Kill the Poor,” “Too Drunk to Fuck” (with a guest appearance by Danko Jones), “Nazi Punks Fuck Off” (!!!) and “California Uber Alles,” updating the lyrics of the latter to some slightly-less-outdated references to Arnold Schwarzenegger, which meant that I didn’t know any of the words aside from the chorus. (Who is the governor of California nowadays, anyways–and does he/she aspire to be president?) But that’s not to say he didn’t keep things current, either, with cuts from a couple upcoming releases such as “Barack-star O’Bummer” and “Shock-u-py,” which he also had emblazoned on his t-shirt.
Sure, the new stuff holds its own against the best of the Kennedys’ back catalogue, but what was most impressive was how the man has held up, himself. Granted, he looks about his age, mid-50s, but up on stage, the guy’s got the energy of a 20-year-old–and he certainly hasn’t lost his political ideals, either. There are some punk-rock singers that you just wanna shut up and play the hits (fun fact: I once saw someone hurl a shoe at Keith Morris), but when Jello talks, you listen. Hey, there’s always room for Jello, right?