The Black Lips, Kiwis of the South Pacific, Rump Posse
MJQ – August 18th, 2003
I always like when a good show comes out of nowhere. The weekend before this show I thought I was just going to spend my Monday evening relaxing and doing nothing, but a few days before a friend of mine told me about this show at MJQ. I was really stoked to see this show for a number of reasons. A few years ago while working at WUOG, I did a show with a guy named Frances Hammersmashedface, and one evening during our show, Loud, Fast, Rules, he played a CD of this band called Rump Posse. That night I heard “A Song to Hump to” for the first time, after that I was totally hooked on the Rump Posse. Fast forward a few years later, they are playing a show with the Black Lips, a band that has been tearing everyone in Atlanta a new asshole, so I knew I had to be there.
Rump Posse played first, and they were nothing short of amazing. How could you go wrong with a band that is all about sweat suits, the 1996 Olympics, eating right, sports, making love and lifting weights, really you can’t. Along with a tight gimmick, this band brought the rock like Devo if Eddie Van Halen played guitar. Bookending the set with their jam “Sports,” Rump Posse did their best to whip the often times lackadaisical Atlanta crowd into shape. These guys were so giving that they even stopped for pictures in the middle of the set, how friendly. If you ever get the chance to see Rump Posse bring your workout gear folks, you’ll need it.
After, the triumphant Rump Posse, were the Kiwis of the South Pacific, and I hate to say it, but I really thought this band was bad. As I usually say, I like to give the band the benefit of the doubt, and this evening they were having an abnormal amount of technical issues, but even when things were working fine, I still felt like I was watching a bunch of 5ht graders who just learned how to play their instruments. These songs were just bad, and their drummer was worse than Meg White, which is about as bad as it gets. I also wasn’t digging the 4 layers of t-shirts the singer was wearing. He proceeded to take one dumb shirt off to unveil some other even dumber t-shirt after ever second or third song. The “free Winona” shirt, come on dude give me a break, that joke was played out the day after it happened. By the response from most of the crowd, I didn’t feel like I was in the minority in feeling the way I did about their set.
Closing the night off was the Black Lips, and even at 1:00 on a Monday these dudes were able to get the crowd moving and dancing and rocking the fucking house down. They had all sorts of problems with their equipment, but it didn’t seems to phase these guys as they rocked through a set of 60’s inspired punk jams, even busting out a cover of Nancy Sinatra’s “These Boots were made for Walking.” These guys were going insane on stage, and it very well may have been the most energy from a band actually from here that I’ve seen go that crazy. They were all singing into the same mic, and the drummer was screaming in the back ground, and dudes were hanging from the rafters, and beer was being spilled all over the place and cans were being tossed every which way. It was truly an amazing site. I just hope these dudes don’t self-destruct, because they go so hard that I think it may be tough to hold up that kind of intensity for more than a few years. If they do it would be amazing, but if not, I think the Black Lips have left a nice little scar on the Atlanta punk scene that isn’t going to go away anytime soon.