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Kings of the Road:
The Agenda Lounge gets paved over by the high-octane Road Kings

By Sarah Quelland

AFTER DELIVERING a raucous hip shaker of a show at the Agenda Lounge last August, the Road Kings returned last Wednesday (Oct. 13) to tear up the stage some more. When it comes to scorching, swinging, high-octane rockabilly-punk with a souped-up kick, you can't get much better than this edgy trio from Texas that takes its cues from everyone from the Ramones to ZZ Top. Giving a real sense of spontaneity to the show by not using a set list, the Road Kings cruised through songs from their virtually faultless debut album on Surfdog Records, including "Supercop," "Casting My Spell" and my favorite, "Hot Wired." When I asked guitarist/vocalist Jesse Dayton why the band skipped the sultry south-of-the-border Tejano-styled "Boystown (Nuevo Laredo)," he responded casually in a slow Southern drawl: "We just kind of forgot it. We weren't really using a set list." The Road Kings' 12-song debut was produced by James Saez, who's worked with Jane's Addiction, Sugar Ray and Social Distortion. On Nov. 9 and 10, the band kicks off the night for a solo Mike Ness (Social Distortion) at Slim's in San Francisco.

The Ultravibe.com launch party last Thursday (Oct. 14) packed the Edge, where Empty, Major Liegue, Papa Roach and Insolence performed. With furious energy, Insolence let loose some new material and played favorites like "Front." The site (www.ultravibe.com) is up and running. Visit it for more information.

All sources say Smash Mouth is still the featured guest at the private party going down at the Usual Friday (Oct. 22). Call the club for details on how to get in. On Oct. 23 the Usual hosts a benefit for Jason Drummond, better known perhaps as DJ SPUN, with King Raffi, Rick Preston, Julius Papp, M3, Harry Who? and Mark Johns. The club is donating the space for the night, and the proceeds will help Drummond with mounting cancer-related medical expenses. Get there early to do the most good. All door proceeds before 11pm will go directly to Drummond, while half the door will be given to him after that time. If you can't make the party but want to help, send checks to Jason Drummond, 351 Ninth St., #205, San Francisco 94103. For updates, visit www.electronicartists.net/parties/ djspun. ... The annual Exotic Erotic Ball comes to the Cow Palace Oct. 23. Musical entertainment includes Genitorturers, Motorhead, Bif Naked, Swarm, Lee Press On and the Nails, Creeper Lagoon and others.

In a local musical coup, the Cactus Club hosts Tool frontman Maynard James Keenan's side project, A Perfect Circle, next Thursday (Oct. 28). Making his South Bay debut last September at the Usual, Keenan lorded it over the audience wearing a T-shirt that read, "Fuck Me, I'm Famous" in glittery rhinestones. Indeed. Tool's Ænima has gone double platinum in the U.S. But don't expect any Tool tunes at this show. Maynard maintains a strict separation between his two bands and will, at the very least, verbally attack any misguided fan who even mentions Tool. ... Another cult figure, Jello Biafra, gives a spoken-word performance Nov. 12 at Monterey's Cal State University. Word is, Lard, a project featuring Biafra and members of Ministry, will be releasing a new EP in January.

Apparently Korn's latest should be on the shelves soon. The boys from Bakersfield will be animated for South Park's season premiere (a Halloween episode set to air Oct. 27). The metal-rap quintet is taking the opportunity to premiere its own single, "Falling Away From Me," from its fourth album, Issues, which is due out Nov. 16.

PLAN AHEAD: The Chums and ManMade God, Oct. 22 at the Cocodrie in San Francisco; Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Oct. 24 at the Edge; Nag, Oct. 26 at the Usual; Bruce Springsteen, Oct. 25-26 at the Oakland Arena; John Paul Jones, Oct. 28 at the Fillmore; Dokken and Great White, Oct. 28 at the Edge; Monkey, Oct. 29 at Blake's in Berkeley; Insolence, Oct. 29 at the Cactus Club; Eric Martin (of Mr. Big), Oct. 29 at Last Day Saloon in San Francisco; Party Casket (formerly known as Sketch), Oct. 30 at the Cactus; Luscious Jackson, Oct. 30 at the Usual; Good Riddance, Oct. 31 at the Cocodrie; Diamanda Galás, Oct. 31 at Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley; Blink 182 and Silverchair, Nov. 4 at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco; Krenshaw and Nine Past Nine, Nov. 19 at the Midpeninsula YWCA in Palo Alto; Kid Rock and Powerman 5000 Nov. 26 at the San Jose State Event Center.

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From the October 21-27, 1999 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

Copyright © 1999 Metro Publishing Inc. Metroactive is affiliated with the Boulevards Network.

For more information about the San Jose/Silicon Valley area, visit sanjose.com.




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