You Don’t Fuck with the Blues: Jon Spencer Blues Explosion at the Horseshoe Tavern

October 23, 2012 at 10:12 pm (Uncategorized)

When I heard the Jon Spencer blues Explosion were playing the Horseshoe Tavern, I rushed out to get my ticket because:

a) it was Jon Spencer

b) it was at the Horseshoe, so I knew it would sell out.
Anyway, last Thursday, I was thumbing through the new edition of Now Magazine when I came across the Hot Tickets feature. Sure enough Spencer was mentioned: Thursday October 18th. No, I thought that can’t be right. Sure enough on my calender it was listed for Friday night. A quick look at the ticket revealed otherwise. It was that evening. Change my shirt, and I was out the door.

I reached the Shoe in time to catch the last few songs by Crushed Out a two piece r & b surf band from Brooklyn. It was a bit too short to accurate judge them, but the crowd seemed to be enjoying it.

I’ve seen Jon Spencer six times. Twice in Pussy Galore, once in Boss Hogg and three times (including this show) with the Blues explosion. Still, considered opinion was that the last couple of Blues explosion records had kid of lost the pace. Not that they were terrible, but they just didn’t match the frenzy of earlier releases. Last year’s show at Lee’s Palace betrayed none of that though. It was vintage Spencer, so the news they were touring with a new album, Meat and Bone was pretty exciting.

The Blues Explosion hit the stage at 1030 and for the next sixty minutes played a tight blues-garage rock set that made you remember that before The White Stripes, the Black Keys, the Jim Jones Revue and all the rest, there was the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Authenticity? C’mon, aren’t we beyond that? The band played ROCK ‘N’ ROLL

New material and old, and even a cover of the Beastie Boys’ “She’s on it” thrown in. Requests for “Brenda” (from Orange), were greeted with the explanation that the explanation, Brenda was in an old folks home; not ones to look back, the Blues Explosion sounded a lot more like their early selves (check out Controversial Negro for a taste of them live), and we were all the better for it.

A great sweat soaked rock and roll evening at a sold out Horseshoe Tavern.

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