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Send My Conscience Home in a Taxi

Externalised Memory

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Kim Salmon
Stooges Dancer
Friday night, I made it out to a gig - the second one for that week, damn I'm a rock and roll animal! Kim Salmon was playing with his old band the Surrealists at the Ding Dong Lounge.

I first saw Kim back in 1992, when he did a solo thing supporting a Henry Rollins spoken word gig at a tiny, tiny dive in Collingwood called The Club. The one song I remember from that gig was called "The Cockroach", which was a rather dark piece of poetry about how the cockroaches are waiting around for us to all die, or as the song goes "When they get round to poisoning themselves, I'll have this whole place to myself."

I'm not sure that I've seen him play since. I have a vague memory that I might have done, at some smoky bar like The Tote. I know I've seen him more recently with his outfit "Salmon" - seven guitars and two drummers. Novel!

Anyway, I saw one of the support bands. And it occurred to me while they were playing that Rock and Roll essentially hasn't changed in thirty or forty years. Sometime in my dim distant past I learned a lot about guitars, not that I ever learned to play them. But I read enough books and guitar magazines to recognise guitars and basses and what have you. This support band had a Fender Telecaster (first made in the 50's), a Fender precision bass, and another Fender of a more recent model I couldn't identify. Played through at least one Marshall amp. All this stuff is still being made, but essentially hasn't changed since the 1960s. I could have been watching this band just about any time between about 1965 and, say, last Friday night. The only piece of equipment which post dates then was the Boss distortion pedal from 1978. Rock Nerd Much?

Just found some pictures of the gig which look strikingly like some I took with my phone.

Wow, this entry is wandering all over the place. Well, why stop now.

I encountered my friends and ex-housemates from the Northcote House of TISM, Richard and Barbara, which was absolutely no surprise at all.

Kim and band played, and I realised that I really only knew a couple of their songs. I also realised that I'm getting a bit old to be standing around gigs all night - I had to find a place to sit about two thirds of the way through the set because my legs got tired! I think my rock pig days are over. And in fact, I wasn't too concerned by this. I think I may well have had my fill of live music. I spent a good six or seven years of my life in the mid to late 90's following a whole bunch of bands around. I had a mighty good time and I'm sure I did permanent damage to my hearing. It might be time to admit that that was something I did rather than something I do.

Having said that, I am planning to see Saul Williams and Public Enemy in the next few months. What with being an angry suburban white boy :-)