My first concert at 924 Gilman: The Futures from Japan, Out Cold & Capitalist Casualties
What brought me to 924 Gilman Street in Berkeley, California for the first time in my life—at age 31—has been partially lost to the sands of memory. I think I was there because I had been introduced to Out Cold, a super cool Thrash band, by Ben Merlis (aka Ben Edge of Fields Of Fire and Knife Fight).
READ: California comes to Cleveland – Annihilation Time, Fields Of Fire with 9 Shocks Terror at the Grog Shop
Or maybe 9 Shocks Terror connected us—I can’t remember.
9 Shocks Terror’s SoCal tour with Tony Erba & Jim Konya changed my life
In any case, Out Cold was playing Gilman. I was excited to hear Japan’s The Futures as well. (I can’t remember anything at all about Capitalist Casualties.) Since I was so new in Los Angeles, and had no job yet, I must have figured, What the heck? and aimed the Camry toward the Bay Area on a random Friday night.
Read all about my mega-move to Los Angeles
After twenty years in SoCal—I’m posting this retrospectively in 2022—I don’t think I’d ever be like, Nothing to do? Let’s go to a show in the Bay tonight! nowadays. Ahh. Those were definitely the days.
Check out my concert diary entry:
Anyhow, there I was on Friday, November 8th, 2002, enjoying the anarchy, the graffiti, the stench of punk at the mother of all D.I.Y. show spaces. It was pretty fucking glorious!
So many bands that we at U.S. Rocker had adored throughout the ’80s and ’90s had come up through Gilman Street.
Read my interview with The PeeChees
And of course Speak In Tongues was the venue’s spiritual child.
Here’s my entire collection of Speak In Tongues photos, clippings & stories
The Smell was as well (with strong influence from Jabberjaw in the mix).
I was thinking before I arrived that Gilman Street had to be past its prime by this late date. But it wasn’t. The show was a rager. I bought a membership card at the door and then plunged into the crowd, instantly shaving fifteen years off my age. I was moshing like a teenager again.
The Futures were a real gem of a band. Kinda hard to believe the punks accepted them because they had a lot of “other” music in them, which was probably why I liked what I was hearing.
I was a Ruins / Zeni Geva / Space Streakings / Boredoms / Melt-Banana fan from way back. Yeah, I was into the off-kilter Japanese stuff for sure.
The Futures had a bit of that! Thrashing out at multi-speeds (fast, faster and HOLY SHIT)… while also taking brief side trips through poppin’ bass gulley.
These photos have never been posted before. One of the joys of my early ’00s photo restoration project is rediscovering the music of these Y2K-era bands. I have The Futures’ Electric Wave from the Under World on vinyl but rarely listen.
I should listen more often—it still rocks:
If you have a flier, photos, video or just some memories of this concert that you’d care to share, please contact me.
In the meantime, please enjoy more classic early 2000s posts:
Young People, Get Hustle, Mummers at “Anthony & Dan’s loft,” November 2002
20 years ago I became an Angeleno; Cobra Verde welcomed me—& Falling James got me a job!
The 100% True Story of How I Met Don Bolles
Noise Rock shows its Pride: Japanther, Early Humans & Black Eyes in DC, 2002
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