June 1990 - Issue 18 SLUG Mag masthead

Miscellaneous Stuff: Barrier Free Concert At SLCC


The complacent, stately aura of the Copper Room created an interesting contrast to the explosive energy emanating from the amplifiers in the middle of the room. Those who voyaged to the Salt Lake Community College Copper Room on April 13 endeavored to shake, stand, slam, and stomp to the aural vibrations manipulated by Dinosaur Bones, Victims Willing and the Boxcar Kids. These three enduring Salt Lake bands once again donated their kinetic noise to a most pious cause: a benefit concert for Barrier Free Education. Admission was free, but most individuals called upon their empathetic virtue and dispensed their spare shillings to the Barrier Free people. The bands also played for no pay, but sounded as excellent as ever.

Dinosaur Bones was first and began the show by ripping into “manipuationship” from the American White Trash release. Despite the omission of the obligatory Frankie Yankovic accordion solo, his song still shredded the innards. But wait, that was just the soundcheck. After they adjusted their little equalization knobs, the Bones gathered the multitude about the stage and unleashed the most ruling song since creation, “Dino Gods.” Golly, that song kicks! Musically and lyrically, this jam demonstrates the Dinosaur Bone’s humorous style. Suffice it to say, the Bones continued their onslaught, stomping through “Disco Inferno,” “This is Your Life,” and, among others, “American White Trash” and “Fashion Icon.” Yes, the Flanger o’ Hades was there, but I won’t criticize it because Otto knows that I’m just jealous cuz I don’t have a neat toy like he does.

Victims Willing was next. Without further adieu, these guys kicked into their groove-o’ the-heathen. I’m no connoisseur of this power-core music, but I can tell that Victims play it tight and rhythmically diverse. After absorbing their relentless chord progressions and precision time changes, I had an opportunity to briefly converse with the bass player, Joe Jewks. When I mentioned music theory, he summed up Victims’ attitude when he said something along the lines of, “theory just gets you more confused…” I’ve also spoken to lead vocalist Brad Barker, this amiable chap’s got some cool musical insight and an overall positive, sincere attitude. To me, that’s what this band is all about; no superficial front, just a consistent delivery of the goods. By the way, ya’ll should check out Victims Willing cover of “Paranoid” on the “Dead Cat” compilation. What an interesting interpretation!

Which brings us to the inevitable close, Boxcar Kids. With that Phil Huy back on board playing that shiny brass thing with the reed, these hyperactive children lit up the room with their distinctive electricity. Jodn Foo-Man-Chooman [cc] belted out his sonorous vocals from behind his stylin’ goatee, while Phil’s Sax, Peter’sDrum, and Chris’ Guitar structured the groove. While these four excellent musicians are surely integral parts of the BK sound, I like to say that I was very impressed by the bass playing of Brendan Welsh. This guy can speedily hop all over the neck with the greatest of ease, and yet play some great, supportive grooves.

 These three bands have time and time again donated their loins for decent and important causes (such as Barrier Free Education) which is more than I can say. From now on, I will rescind my critical ways so that I can praise the praiseworthy things that happen in the scene. Concerts such as the Barrier Free benefit and Sabbathon are evidence that there are some compassionate people around here who actually give a damn about the world around them

More power to ’em… 

Check out these other archived concert reviews:
Concert Review: Peter Murphy and Nauvoo
Concert Review: The Jesus and Mary Chain