Live: Supersuckers/The Spittin’ Cobras

THE CONTINENTAL CLUB — 2/22/12: As has become the standard every few months, The Supersuckers have returned once more to put on a good old-fashioned rock show at The Continental Club. And once more, the show delivered on all fronts (as is the standard for each and every show I’ve seen by the ‘Suckers). It’s like they know exactly when my psyche needs a big, black, engineer-booted, rock n’ roll kick-in-the-ass. I imagine there’s some sort of regionalized schedule they’ve come up with to deliver the service on such a need-based timetable, incorporating tidal patterns, ley lines, and the like. But I digress.

The Spittin’ Cobras were the opener this time around, and while I hadn’t heard of them, I knew something was up as I noticed that the letters “KMFDM” were spray-painted on their gear. Turns out that the current guitarist and drummer (Jules Hodgson and Andy Selway, respectively) from the industrial outfit are also in The Spittin’ Cobras. Joining them in the Cobras are singer Alx Karchevsky and bassist Chris Hagan, and together the group delivers hard, loud, fast, beer- and sweat-drenched rock and roll in the vein of The Stooges, AC/DC, Appetite-era Gn’R, etc. Driving and raucous, with enough touches of punk and metal thrown in to the mix to really make things interesting. I’m a notoriously “tough crowd” for opening acts (probably due to my growing status as a world-class curmudgeon), but by the end of their set, The Spittin’ Cobras had me singing along with them on their cover of Rainbow’s “Long Live Rock & Roll.” Literally…lead singer Alx thrust the mic into my face for the refrain, and after the pure rock beating I had just received at the hands of he and his Cobra brethren, I had no choice but to testify. The band’s first album The Year of the Cobra has just recently been released — find it, put it on, turn it up loud, and wreck some shit.

Then, the Supersuckers — what can I say that I haven’t already clumsily stated before? This is a band that plays a ton of shows…and from what I’ve seen plays them all like they were onstage at Madison Square Garden. I have never, ever seen the Supersuckers “coast” through a gig; I’m guessing the very thought of doing so would be anathema to frontman Eddie Spaghetti.

I must note that a couple of things had changed since last I saw the Supersuckers: in addition to Eddie, Dan “Thunder” Bolton and Scott Churilla were still there, but the “stage right” guitar spot formerly held by Ron “Rontrose” Heathman was now occupied by “Metal” Marty Chandler — a change that, to my ears at least, was pretty seamless. Chandler had great presence and rapport with the audience, and seemed to be really enjoying himself…perhaps because it was his birthday that day, according to Spaghetti. Most importantly, he was ripping out those tasty Supersucker licks like it was no problem at all, while adding his own “Metal” Marty flavor to each. Looking forward to an album with this guy.

Additionally, unlike the last couple of shows I’d seen, there were no songs from the Supersuckers’ country oeuvre played during this show — so no “Barricade” or “Must’ve Been High,” et al, this time around. That’s not a deal-breaker for me, by any means — I came to worship at the altar of the Supersuckers because of the Pure Rock Fury stuff, but I do like their country material a lot as well. The upside to that, of course, is the space in the set for more Pure Rock Fury tunes, so I ain’t complaining too much.

Said Pure Rock Fury tunes spanned the band’s entire legacy (sans the aforementioned country stuff) — “How to Maximize Your Kill Count,” “Doublewide,” “Get It Together,” “Born With A Tail,” “Bad Bad Bad,” and “Pretty Fucked Up” were my personal faves this time around, along with the (de rigueur of ‘Sucker shows as of late) cover of Thin Lizzy’s “Cowboy Song.”

All told, a great night of rock was had. The Spittin’ Cobras were an awesome discovery, and The Supersuckers kicked all kinds of ass, as usual. My only regret is that my unborn daughter couldn’t make it to this show in-utero (her mommy was too tired) so that we could start the rock education in earnest. No worries though — I’m fairly sure the Supersuckers will still be touring relentlessly and delivering the goods by the time she’s old enough to sit atop Dad’s shoulders and throw the metal horns. Note to the band: Supersuckers onesies are needed in your merch store. Might I suggest a “Born With A Tail” theme?

(Photos by M. House.)

Live review by . Live review posted Tuesday, April 24th, 2012. Filed under Features, Live Reviews.

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One Response to “Live: Supersuckers/The Spittin’ Cobras”

  1. Pat taylor on April 25th, 2012 at 1:48 am

    Having seen the suckers 30 plus times, the Cobras are the only band I’ve seen that showed them up….surprised I know, but the Suckers are on auto pilot in their career. I saw this show in St Louis and it also so happened to be Metal Martys birthday , so take from that what you will. Pick up the Spittin Cobras album and crank to 11.

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