Butthole Surfers w/ GWAR 17.12.87: Innocuous Decadence *Deluxe* {aka Psycho Gig reviews pt. I & II}

13769430635241376943773237For the up all night, burnin’ the Midnight Lamp set: a trip down the rabbit-hole time~machine beyond Oz… 2 days before holiday in Dec.’87 I saw this very lineup of the Butthole Surfers {Gibby/ Leary/ Pinkus/ Theresa/ King Koffey} perform the Locust Abortion Technician tour concert. Local Antarctic punkrock anti-heros GWAR opened and Santa was mock-crucified on a Christmas treecomplete w/ Xmas lights wrapped all around him somehow surviving the copious ‘stage fluids’ at any GWAR show. The Surfers brought an entire PA system in a truck and set it up _behind_ the crowd than proceeded to also use the club system in front. Industrial level strobe lights (literally blinding luminosity) were set up and a completely bald and shaved naked lady dancer named “Taadah! The__Lady” (think Dirtwoman but female and prettier) began to dance hypnotically to the flashing.

1376943600807Dryice machines filled the room till you could not see more then 10 feet clearly. Your feet were not actually not touching the ground for 1 hr+, there were so many people crammed in it may have been double capacity oversold. Everyone was sweating and the whole crowd was swaying and laughing and yelling for them to start. EPIC! Oh yeah there was a pair 1960’s educational short 16mm film projections of  moon landings, insect swarms & penile reconstructive surgery. Some say it was a sex-change operation who can tell when giant 20 foot dolphins are swimming over it all in full techmotion color washes?!.  Our name is XARRIER INFRASTARWERX RECORDINGS  and we  DO NOT endorse this as a method of either increasing your intellect or enlightenment, yet every word is WORD. Whodat? Trudat!

All i know is as wicked as the Rockitz Xmas set was, the 4th of July the next summer of ’88 on the Capitol Mall was even more chaos! Pre-lapalooza mud drenched madness, the gnarliest wastoid/biker/pre-‘Crusty crowd that looked like rejects from Road Warrior/Mad Max extras (more like castaways?) for being too dirty and depraved. Wow that’s when tax dollars really were spent on something that mattered. Ending w/ PA shut off by whoever runs the park, BHS had generators already on and kept playing thru amps in spite of megaphones and whirlybirds repeating SHOW IS OVER EVERYONE LEAVE NOW.
 
Gibby’s flaming cymbal trick was taken to literal new heights, being an outdoors stage and I swear the ‘circus great balls of fire!” were going 20-30 feet up. Fuzz in full Star Wars body armor mounted on Horses and a spotlight ghetto bird descended, crowd running all directions. Luckily i saw a familiar face and hoped on the metro bus with them, did not look too good back where the pit used to be. I doubt those left behind enjoyed the rest of the evening… Somehow BHS music was even darker then ever. Think Hunter S. Thomson vs. Aleister Crowley vs. Rudy Ray Moore in a tag team wide awake nightmare. Why do NASCAR fans love the wreckage best?

1376943556443PRE~LAPALOOZA?! I was wearing a Slayer ‘Reign in Blood’ tour shirt w/ the sleeves cutoff, some bike racing long~shorts w/ long dyed blu-black hair which had completely false dreaded in dried mud. The day had started over 100 degrees then an insane rainstorm Right Coast summer cloudburst~stylee soaked one of the openers ’13’ an all chic biker rock band from Gotham till they were getting shocked from the mics. Felt kinda bad for them so bought a single out of back of their van. Did I mention mud yet? It was saturating everything including the bands, stage/gear and even inside your shoes!

I couldn’t see the band logo on shirt so much now drying dirt…or where the pants/shirt & mud/skin began or ended. Somehow, thanks to a Muse who looks after obviously in-need-of-help, exhausted & spent ‘damage-rock’ fans, we made it to MD suburbs and chilled w/ a friend. Did they ever put on a weak show? NOT. Also saw the Hairway to Steven tour later at 9:30 club, Pual Leary had this insane ear to ear grin as he turned delay knobs thru mega distortion loops [slowed doooown]. For what seemed like hours thru a vintage (read: no master volume so it has to be dimed to overdrive) Marshall full stack set center stage between pigtailed evil-twin (think Shining hallway scene) drummers. That was his guitar anti-hero ‘solo’! At the time I was happy as a pig in a blanket. . .of mud!
 

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