“It’s not worth it for us to get on stage and watch these kids getting hurt,” says Jones.

Verbal Assault – Twice As Nice


When flyers for the second Verbal Assault show in Salt Lake surfaced, not just a few people thought it was a joke—too good to be true. But on that third Tuesday in August, there they were, the band from Rhode Island, tearing up the tiny–we prefer the word “intimate”–stage at The Word.

It was an amazing show, very different from their Speedway performance 18 days earlier, not that the first show wasn’t amazing. Imagine a sell-out crowd (about 400), already out of control after the incredible Shudder To Think and the homecoming of The Stench, incited by front-man Chris Jones doing a dance called the “Pogo,” through a ten-song set. The band tries to discourage stage diving and slam dancing.

“It’s not worth it for us to get on stage and watch these kids getting hurt,” says Jones.

The Speedway show was the 30th of a 50-show, nine-week tour schedule and should have been the foursome’s only stop in the “City By A Dead Lake.” But on Aug 17, while in Washington state, the boys learned their Canadian dates were not going to happen. What else could they do? They had to come back through Salt Lake.

“We had fun last time, and we have so many friends here,” confides Jones. “People just seemed to like us, and nobody tried to label us. We like it here.” 

So, as I said earlier, there they were on stage at The Word. This show had the same energy and the Pogo dancing as the Speedway show, but the band displayed comfort and confidence this time that I felt was absent from the earlier show. They seemed like a hometown act; it was a very powerful performance.

The band gave a sampling of new music which will be released on an EP in the fall. The title will be On. Watch for it at Raunch. They plan a European tour in early ’90—a certain Salt Lake roadie extraordinaire has been invited along. It may be quite some time before we see the return of Rhode Island’s assault weapon, Verbal Assault, but until then, go out and buy the record and learn how to Pogo. Verbal Assault is Chris Jones (vocals), Darren Mock (bass), Pete Chramiec (guitar) and Doug Earnest (drums). 

Read more SLUG 1989 Archives:
Fugazi Concert Review
Boxcar Kids: A blend of Salt Lake’s Finest Egos