By Lisa Burke
February 11th 2017, Loaded Rock Bar, Hollywood CA: What is better than a dogmatic classic style down n’ dirty live punk rock show? The answer is nothing worthy of discussion at the moment, so let’s dive into my Saturday night spent once again at Loaded Rock Bar in Hollywood in an effort to attend a live show featuring ’70s punk legends The Pagans, with support from The Dirges, Brass Knuckle Voodoo, and the ever popular Turbulent Hearts.
Unfortunately, I was unable to arrive until The Dirges set, but on my last Turbulent Hearts expedition I had a great time and rumor has it those in attendance for this adventure were no different. Walking into the Loaded band room and seeing six people on the stage usually makes for a crowded vision, yet leave it to the owner of the establishment, who also happens to be the guitarist and lead vocalist of this Irish styled rock, folk, and punk band The Dirges, to space the members out in such a way that not only was there room for a small beer table, but also there was still room to spare. Keep in mind six people implies a keyboardist with a large keyboard and talent to boot. Interestingly enough for this Irish rock band, the beer table was not enough to hold all the Guinness they required during their set, so the tops of the amps quickly filled up with tall cans of Guinness as well. On to the tunes, they are aggressively done in a very Irish rock n’ roll style with some folk and a touch of punk elements, and the female member plays a few different instruments such as the flute and the mandolin to show off just a few of her many talents. So, of course while I was trying to enjoy the catchy Irish tunes that promote beer party fun among other more sophisticated treats, “some drunk guy” who had his back to my back decided to throw his beer over his shoulder without caring that I had already taken a shower that evening and didn‘t need his beer as my new leave-in-conditioner. While that put a literal damper on my fun, I decided letting him know it happened and walking away without kicking his ass was the best course of action. After a great set up and a great worthwhile set from The Dirges, it was almost time for The Pagans.
The Pagans are four dudes who all fit their part in this band in an equally exceptional way, and even though it was the singer’s birthday this night, the rowdiness seemed to be kept to a minimum. That is not to say there weren’t a few punk rock antics at play such as the singer smoking on stage which is one of those exceptions to the rules that I’ve always loved because when you break the fourth wall it somehow becomes legal again even if it isn’t. This band is full of catchy riffs, hard-hitting badass punky creative beats, booming bass riffs, and professionally sound dirty rock n’ roll vocals with punk enhanced lyrics. These boys serve up the punk tunes like it’s 1999 or 1979 again, and they easily appease any age crowd. At the bitter and sad end of the set, the singer said, “We don’t have any more tunes for ya, but I can read you a story”, and guess what happened next? He sat down and read a story he had on hand and that’s the end of my story because I don’t know what it was, although I do know it was not uninteresting.
So that completes another poetic night of live music at Loaded Hollywood, and as both these bands are known to make the occasional non-stop entertaining appearance here, you should definitely keep them in your radar for all future shows.
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