Way over 100 shows in 2012- a personal record!
It’s over 100 miles each way for me to attend a show at the House of Blues in Anaheim/ Downtown Disney. I’ve always liked Lit (although I confess to only having one of their CDs) and I loved Julien-K when they were touring about 5 years ago- I went to great lengths to catch them a few times. Both bands have new albums and this seemed like a great way to spend a Saturday evening in Orange County.
After a long drive, it was time for a little House of Blues food before the show. The opening band could be heard playing through the walls of the dining hall. Dinner was timed so that the check would come minutes before Julien-K took the stage. The soup was killer, but the jambalaya was kind of disappointing. Still, I left all bloated and made it to the music hall.
When the band took the stage, I wasn’t so sure they were actually the band that was playing. They didn’t look or sound anything like a I remembered from back in the day. I even Googled a current picture of them, and, sure enough, it was them playing. Amir Derakh looks like he’s about 20 years old. Ryan Schuck also looked different than I seem to remember. I think they played a lot of the their new tunes. They sounded pretty cool, but they’ve taken a different direction than I remember from the debut album- it was less industrial and more new wave this time out. I enjoyed their set, but wish they had played more from their first album.
Their set lasted about 45 minutes. Out on the balcony of the concert hall, you can hear the fireworks at Disneyland, but you can’t actually see them. I watched a crowd down below enjoy the fireworks. The grand finale sure sounded cool. 5 minutes before their set was supposed to start, it was back to the concert hall where The Who blared over the loud speaker.
Lit then started playing and the local OC crowd went bonkers. They blazed through a vast majority of their catalog and kept the energy way up there. They did some pop punk all the way to some pretty heavy stuff bordering on thrash. It rocked. A. Jay Popoff kept taking shots of alcohol during the show and was probably pretty lit towards the end. A fitting tribute was made for Allen Shellenberger and his dad was in attendance, which was cool. And Mulletron made an appearance on Lipstick and Bruises.
They definitely rocked and all the songs I am really familiar with sounded great, as did the new songs and most everything in between. Fullerton is probably a pretty happy city right now. I had a great time and was hardly even phased by the 200+ mile drive. I’d do it again, for sure.
A. Jay Popoff