Riding the wave of ‘80s and ‘90s nostalgia, Come and Take It Productions brought punk rock night to Grizzly Hall on Thursday, February 16th. Featuring SoCal punk/surf trio Agent Orange, Huntington Beach punk rockers Guttermouth, and Northeast pop-punk legends The Queers, the show gave fans the opportunity to take out their old punk T’s, patched-up jean vests, and gravity-defying mohawks, and get busy moshing and stage-diving.
Early in the night, The Queers got the crowd moving with their no-nonsense Ramones-inspired brand of punk. The trio, featuring original member Joe Queer, launched into “Tamara Is a Punk” from 1998’s Punk Rock Confidential as they took the stage. The Queers furiously performed their set, moving from one song to the next with little crowd interaction or showmanship, except for lead singer/guitarist Joe Queer simultaneously holding his guitar in the air with one hand while playing it during the song “Kicked-Out of the Webelos”. Throwing in a few Screeching Weasels covers and the Ramones’ “Sheena is Punk Rocker,” before closing with “Granola-Head” from their popular 1993 album Love Songs for the Retarded, the band was the perfect warm-up.
Guttermouth was arguably the biggest draw on the line-up. One fan spoke for many in the audience. A 39-year-old former skater going by Resin from SoCal said he was there to see Guttermouth because “they’re the fucking shit -– they make me feel like I’m 15 and I want to punch somebody, but I’m not going to do that… I got to work tomorrow!” Stumbling on to the stage with matching Jägermeister-stained t-shirts and Lone Star tall boys in their hands, the irreverent as always Guttermouth, lead by the 51-year-old front man Mark Adkins, began their high-energy set with “Mark The Chubby Chaser” from 2006’s Shave the Planet.
Stopping frequently to talk shit about helmet-wearing cyclists, other punk bands, and Fat Wreck Chords, while passing beers into the crowd, the drunk and mumbling Adkins showed he was still as mischievous as he was back in the day. The set was punctuated by fan favorites “1, 2, 3… Slam!” and “Bruce Lee vs. The Kiss Army” from 1991’s Full Length LP, before Adkins asked a girl in the crowd to smear chapstick on his lips before their last song “Lipstick” from 1997’s Musical Monkey.
Having played almost continuously since the band formed in 1979 and led by only remaining member, rhythm guitarist/lead vocalist Dave Palm, Agent Orange demanded respect as the headliner for the evening, but after the stage antics of Guttermouth, they had a hard act to follow. Setting the tone with “Pipeline” from 1981’s Living in Darkness, the band’s surf-infused punk rock provided just enough waves needed for non-stop stage-diving and crowd-surfing.
Performing over twenty songs including, Alice Cooper’s “This House is Haunted”, Palm took a moment late in the set to give shout-outs to the other bands and then hawk the Agent Orange merch featuring baseball jerseys, coffee mugs, and basically anything else they could put their logo on and stating, “If you’re gonna buy music, do me a favor, only buy it directly from the band, know why? Because every label we’ve ever worked with are a bunch of fucking crooks.” This was followed by an uninspired take on their biggest hit “Bloodstains” and decent version of surf hit “Miserlou”, before closing with a cover of the Dead Kennedy’s “Police Truck”. This was the third stop on a tour, which continues to Florida before ending in Kansas City on March 18th.