Thursday, February 25, 2010

Alkaline Trio Show Review / I am Not a Stripper

Alkaline Trio

In the Venue
February 24, 2010

I was not hired as a stripper for last night's Alkaline Trio show, despite what the band may have thought.

Going to concerts is infinitely more difficult once you have kids. Despite having to make some complicated babysitting arrangements, I thought I had everything worked out so I could check out Alkaline Trio, one of my long-time favorite bands. As it got closer to showtime, however, plans got disrupted a bit and I thought I might miss it. And the last thing I wanted was to drive to the club just to have to turn back around because it was already over. Then the light bulb turned on--though I had never met him, I had the tour manager's cell number!

I texted the following:

"Carlos, this is Spencer from In This Week. Has Alkaline gone on yet?"

This seemed like a pretty straightforward question. But I guess I was wrong.

"Are u the stripper?"


I responded that fortunately, for everyone's sake, I was not.

With no further response from Carlos, I headed to In the Venue, hoping I hadn't missed the show. Though I tried to concentrate on just making it to the venue on time, I couldn't help but wonder what Alkaline Trio would be doing with the male stripper they were apparently expecting.

When I got to the club, I was happy to see that the band had just started. The boys were pounding through "Dine, Dine My Darling" from their new record, and though they were playing in front of their usual heart-and-skull backdrop, something didn't seem right. What was with all the balloons and party hats? It turns out, rock stars have birthdays, too.

Matt Skiba was happy to celebrate his 34th birthday with his Salt Lake City fans, especially because it meant plenty of birthday shots between songs. He handled the liquor just fine, but he really got thrown off his game when, five seconds after starting a new song, the house music came on (Bell Biv Devoe's "Poison," no less) and his band abandoned their instruments. His face lit up when the band's crew delivered him a Batman cake, with candles blazing. His joy turned to a bit of fear when he saw the male Hot Cop approaching him for a lap dance.

"I saw a cop on the stage out of the corner of my eye," Skiba said after the encounter, with a smile. "I thought I was getting arrested for swearing or something. I didn't realize it was Officer Sexy."

After the impromptu birthday celebration, the band returned its focus to music, rocking through eight albums of material. The largest chunk came from 2003's "Good Mourning," including "We've Had Enough," "One Hundred Stories," "Continental," and "Fatally Yours." But the definite highlight of the night was "Nose Over Tail" from the band's debut EP, when Matt Skiba shouted "I want to make it really," and the crowd enthusiastically responded in unison, "I'd love to rub your back."

Sounds like the end of a great birthday. Stripper or no.


Cheeseboy said...

Sounds great. But why would they want a male stripper? They seem so not that way.

IcarusArts said...

Haha. That is a great story! The whole parenting thing has really put a damper on my concert attendance as well. It seems that the only time I see bands perform nowadays is when I'm shooting a music video (but then they are lip syncing).