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[whitespace] Seeing Red

Warrant gets sweaty at the Edge; Halloween weekend happenings

By Sarah Quelland

IMAGINE BEING in the front five or 10 rows getting your rock on at a huge arena show while everyone else squinches from the stands to make out who's who onstage. That's what seeing Warrant perform at the Edge last Wednesday (Oct. 22) was like. I've always thought Warrant got a raw deal, lumped in with the novelty hair farmers and cock rockers who had no staying power, although maybe the band brought it on itself. However, frontman Jani Lane is capable of writing memorable, if fairly clichéd lyrics, especially in the so-called pussy power ballads that seem to embarrass him today.

Kicking off with "Dirty Rotten Filthy Stinking Rich," the band put on a hell of a show and looked like it had a blast doing it. Friendly and sociable, a slightly older, slightly wiser Lane repeatedly asked his appreciative audience for smokes and jumped down into the crowd to sing. He and other members even shared their beer with those in the front row (note: a sober Lane was drinking O'Doul's). Warrant made its way through the requisite old favorites ("Down Boys," "32 Pennies," "Uncle Tom's Cabin" and, of course, the pièce de résistance, "Cherry Pie"). The band broke into a medley of ballads ("Heaven," "Blind Faith" and "Sometimes She Cries") that segued into the full version of "I Saw Red" (which Lane prefaced by saying it was the only ballad that really came from the heart: "I still hate that bitch," he declared). Lesser-known material and new songs from the latest album, Greatest and Latest, were also included, and in a surprise turn, Warrant covered Lit's single "My Own Worst Enemy" and closed with Black Sabbath's "War Pigs." After a raunchy, sweaty, fun-filled, full-blast rock & roll show, the members of the band stuck around the club for a long time to sign autographs and hang out.

One of my favorite transplants, Stuart Davis, who moved to Palo Alto from Minnesota last year, gave an intimate solo acoustic performance in the Student Union at Stanford University last Thursday (Oct. 21). This elusive musician breezes in and out of town, booking and promoting gigs just days before the show, so it's hard to catch him but always worth it. Davis recently started his own record label, Post Apocalyptic Records, which was funded by fan investments, and he is about to release his next album, Bright Apocalpyse. He took the opportunity last Thursday to perform most of the songs from that album along with older material from Nomen Est Numen, Kid Mystic and Self Untitled. Davis offers an intriguing blend of provocative, witty, satirical, spiritual, intellectual lyrics and impeccable guitar work, and his songs often possess a mystical quality that carries his listeners on brief but memorable journeys. Thursday's theme seemed to be aliens and death, perhaps appropriate this close to Halloween.

And speaking of Halloween, some highlights follow:

FRIDAY: Insolence at the Cactus Club; Halloween bash with Pacific Standard Time at Waves Smokehouse & Saloon; Boogie Man Bash dinner and dance party at Espresso Garden and Cafe (costumes optional).

SATURDAY: Party Casket (formerly known as Sketch) Halloween blowout at the Cactus Club; teens-only Halloween party at the Fishbowl in Sunnyvale; Halloween party and costume contest with Nite Cry at JJ's Blues Club; Lost in Space (Oct. 30­31) at Backbeat; Superbooty Halloween Ball at the Catalyst in Santa Cruz; Halloween bash with the Yardies at Waves Smokehouse & Saloon; Day of the Dead Festival at Fuel (Oct. 30­31); Horrific Halloween House Party at the Blue Lagoon; Halloween party with Netwerk: Electric at Palookaville in Santa Cruz; and the Cramps at the Fillmore.

SUNDAY: KSJO Halloween party with Dave Meniketti of Y&T (with $1,000 grand prize for best costume) at the Edge in Palo Alto; True to Form, Systematic and Dick at the Saddle Rack; Hip-Hop Halloween at the Cactus Club; Freakshow at the Usual; Haunted House of Wax at Toon's; Monster Bash at the Kings Head; the Creatures, Switchblade Symphony and the Voluptuous Horror of Karen Black at Maritime Hall in San Francisco; Operator: Generator at the Cocodrie in San Francisco; and Swarm at the Transmission Theatre in San Francisco.

PLAN AHEAD: 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; Luscious Jackson, Oct. 30 at the Usual; Suicidal Tendencies, Nov. 2 at Palookaville.

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From the October 28-November 3, 1999 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper.

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

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