Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Live: The Dopamines with Vacation & Scarlet Letter @ Lost & Found 8.17.11

It's always a cause for much rejoicing when the Dopamines come through town. Initially the tour was going to be with New Creases, but health issues have evidently precluded that from taking place, so Vacation were on the bill in their place. Locally Nude Beach and Scarlet Letter were on the front end of things. While I like me some Nude Beach, the x-factor of not knowing Scarlet Letter and enjoying beer drinking with Drew saw me arriving not far enough into Scarlet Letter set for my cranky old self. They seem like a band from NJ that used to be a lot more hardcore, but has smoothed things out in their old age. That said, I'd put them firmly in the Meh column.

Vacation were up next. They played the P.S. Eliot record release show at Cedar Mansion a couple of months ago with Dead Mechanical and were definitely the band that should have opened. I though they were ok then, but save for the unexpected Thin Lizzy cover, I would have liked to have arrived half way through their set and have been left wanting. Seem like solid dudes and they are far from terrible, but don't have anything that I've been able to latch on to personally.

You can always count on The Dopamines to be a good time. even if they can be somewhat less than tight. The constant rain of (crowd-launched) beer that normally punctuates the average set from said Dopadudes might have something to do with it, but the average just South of D4 level of intoxication they often sport definitely does. Jon W handles the Paddy/Shitwheel smart-ass mic duties and the band generally throws down in a pronounced fashion, even with the curious eventuality of having Mikey Erg in the touring unit as second guitarist rather than his ubiquitous presence on every domestic drum throne in the US. It was the usual Dopamines set, save for Jon's charming suggestion that the crowd be punk enough to shit on the floor. Larry Livermore was called out, a not-particularly well-done pit broke out a couple times, and much (ok, maybe a half-hour) post-Screeching Weasel punk rock was purveyed. See them if you can, perhaps sometime not after midnight on a school night. Here's the web presence.


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