Tuesday, January 10, 2012

It's Official... fIREHOSE Reunites

By now, you have probably seen the lineup announced yesterday for this year's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival. Gotta say, I like it. Girls, the Shins, We Were Promised Jetpacks and M83 are highlights for me. For fans of a certain age, however, it's pure nirvana... Pulp, Madness and Buzzcocks will all be there. That's not the one band, however, that made my eyes bug out.

I have read a rumor or two since last spring that fIREHOSE were reuniting, but nothing was officially in print until the Coachella was announcement. I'm a huge fan. It's my personal record holder for the band I have seen the most times live. I think this reunion means so much to me because it's one of those bands I grew up with. I bought Minutemen's 'Double Nickels on the Dime' when it came out in 1984 and went through the dark time following D. Boon's death. There was such a buzz about Mike Watt and George Hurley reforming as fIREHOSE with Ed Crawford. I'll never forget my first listen to their debut back in '86, 'Ragin,' Full On.' Dropping the needle on "Brave Captain" was practically a religious experience. So tight. Let's do it again. This is ripped from my 25-year-old vinyl.

fIREHOSE - Brave Captain (mp3)

When fIREHOSE became one of the bevy of indie bands that were signed to major labels in the early '90s, I couldn't help but think the music suffered at least a little bit. That, of course, could just be my bias, but I didn't like seeing my beloved fIREHOSE ending on that note. So I'll hope for a new album and a lengthy tour.

I followed Mike Watt's solo career off and on the past couple of decades but kind of lost track of him for a while until last year when he released the excellent 'hyphenated-man.' If I had done a top albums list for 2011, it definitely would have landed there. I highly recommend this one... especially if you were a fan of the Minutemen.

Jan. 12 Update: A small left-coast tour is coming together... and they are coming to my town! Here's what we know so far:

April 5: Harlow's, Sacramento
April 6: Doug Fir, Portland
April 7: Neumos, Seattle
April 9: Wild Buffalo House of Music, Bellingham, Wash.
April 10: WOW Hall, Eugene, Ore.
April 11: Slim's, San Francisco
April 12: Historic Coconut Grove Ballroom, Santa Cruz, Calif.
April 13: Fulton 55, Fresno, Calif.
April 14: Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival, Indio, Calif.
April 17: Crescent Ballroom, Phoenix
April 18: Orpheum Theatre, Flagstaff, Ariz.
April 19: Plush, Tucson, Ariz.
April 20: Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival, Indio, Calif.

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