(1/28/17. Melvins – not the greatest but it’s the best shot I could get from upstairs)
The Fonda Theatre is located on Hollywood Boulevard right down the street from the Pantages and just about everything else one would associated with Hollywood, like the paunchy middle-aged dudes that dress up in spandex so as to resemble anything from Spider-Man to Michael Jackson.
My friend and I got there with ample time to engage in the classic pre-show “ritual.”
Melvins went on at 9:15 but, even though the doors opened an hour before, there was still a huge line snaking down the street when we were trying to get in.
Melvins were on probably their second or third song of the set by the time we got inside and onto the balcony.
I’d listened to a handful of Melvins records before this show (Houdini, Ozma, Bullhead, and Lysol) so as to have at least a basic familiarity with what was going to happen.
Regardless, never having watched any of their live videos, I was totally surprised by Buzz Osborne’s (vocalist//guitarist) agility and stage presence.
For a guy that is turning 53 next month and has been performing live for over 30 years, Osborne was bending and contorting with a youthful exuberance.
Based on the songs I did get to see them play, Melvins killed it and really served as a great set up for Sleep.
I would totally see them again next time they’re in town!
(All these pictures suck because I had “live photo” on and didn’t even realize it -_-)
Sleep are THE stoner band. As such, I was very high for this set (as I should have been).
Sleep took the stage to the sound of the moon landing radio transmission and positioned themselves in front of their literal wall of amps.
Matt Pike (guitar) was, as he always is whenever he plays live, shirtless throughout the whole show.
Saying that Sleeps’s set was loud would be an understatement.
I was warned to wear earplugs, but did I listen? Nooooo, of course not.
That shit was deafening; you could FEEL every single thing that they were playing.
Their set was incredibly sick! They got up there and jammed away for an hour or more.
Without saying a word to the audience, Sleep played through their set as though it were one very long song with minor breaks here and there.
Despite a brief period in which I almost fainted because of body heat//dehydration, I could not look away from the stage.
Sleep, as I said before, are seminal in the stoner rock and doom metal game and, after having seen them, it’s no wonder why that is.
Seeing them perform Dopesmoker was insane!
All in all, anyone that digs sludgy, stoney, doomy hard rock//metal like Electric Wizard, High on Fire (Matt Pike’s other project), or Eyehategod should undoubtedly check both Melvins AND Sleep out and should not hesitate to get tickets if they’re playing in your area.
Put it on, crank it up, chill out.