First of all, 9th Wave was unable to attend as they
had a severe brake malfunction. You might say they
were vehicularly challenged. I am so glad they are
all okay and I look forward to catching their next
show at Toads in CT when they open for the King of
the Surf Guitar, Mr. Dick Dale.
The night opened with Reverb Galaxy from Baltimore
complete with the stunning Neptuna and Neptrina
carrying smoking ray-guns. These muchachas are a
cross between Judy Jetson and Barbarella! The rest
of the band was also quite fashionable in their
white space suits and glowing blue shades. They
kinda reminded me of the demented oompa-loompahs in
the Willy Wonka film, but maybe I'm a little odd.
The band opened with 10-15 minutes of straight out
spy surf (Sinister Island, Instigator, and Third
Star to the left), heavy on the drums and beautiful
Jaguar bass. This was followed by Wet Suit Twist,
still loud & twangy but fun a real fun sound
reminiscent of a 60s beach party flick. All in all,
the set was a great mix of slow dreamy surf as in
Blue Sunset as well the thrash of Miserlou and Hava
Nagila. As an added bonus- FIVE ENCORES! Many thanks
to Art (lead git) Joe (rhythm git) Jim (bass), &
Jeremy (skins) for a righteous night of surf!
After a nice quick change over, those loungey,
fez-heads known as the Cocktail Preachers all the
way from Chicago rose to the occasion with the most
exotic and erotic sounds to penetrate Otto's in way
too long. The extra-large jungle drum beat of
Rick Casino was only surpassed by the amazing bass
line of Phil Tiki's red Fender. Rounding out the
Cocktail Preacher's are the dynamic duo of Stevie
Martini on lead guitar and Vitamin B-Bruce on rhythm
git AND Fender Slide lap steel! I have never seen a
surf band use a lap steel before and I was
thoroughly impressed at the versatility of Bruce's
playing. While I missed the go-go dancing of the
Cocktail Shakers I was pleased to see that members
of Reverb Galaxy decided to fill in as substitutes.
Wish I could recite the set list or at least give
you a sampling of what they played, but by song
number 2 I was up & shakin my money maker. I do
recall that Stevie Martini brought the beach
bungaloo down with the punk-iest version ever of
Wipe Out and a very dreamy lounge-style rendition of
Hawaii 5-0. But If you would like to hear a sample
of the Cocktail Preachers ride the tide to the Mp3
sampler at Rickshaw Records:
You'll get a taste of Stealing From The Collection -
17 original tunes. Nice sample, but way to small.
And speaking of small I regret the I wa only able to
catch a small shot of This Spy Surfs, up next.
When This Spy Surfs (NYC) brought their avant-garde
beatnik surf stylings to the stage it was rolling
towards 2 am. I can't begin to express how much I
love this band, not just the music, but the members
as well. They are kind, charming and always a
pleasure to have as part of a show. I am hoping to
catch them on May 20 with
Venice Beach Muscle
at The Underground Lounge, 955 West End Ave., New
York . T-99, Op, and a new drummer (at least new to
me) Loop Sphere closed my evening with Sunset
Surfer. A perfect ending for another perfect Surf
And now I must leave you, but only briefly. I will
be on hiatus for 6 weeks, reappearing after July 1..
Maybe a few shows, but no reviews. I can't seem to
concentrate or write or even think straight
anymore...but don't worry, it's all good. I am
relocating back to the home of
beautiful, bucolic CT because...
I am getting married there sometime later this
Summer. WOW! It's a surprise for me too, but a happy
one. So when the move is done & the nuptials are all
set I will once again return and re-assume my
responsibilities as the Official NESMA Reviewer.
Aloha. See ya' in the funny papers...
Official NESMA Reviewer
Big THANKS to Unsteady Freddie for bringing us to
NYC and Blue StingRaye for the nice review.
I'm glad you dug it. It was nice meeting some
NESMA members and everyone was really friendly and
supportive. Its a really cool venue and the drinks
were strong. I was bummed that 9th Wave had to
cancel - I'm glad they are ok though. Mike & Sandy
have come to Chicago and seen us twice so I was
really looking forward to seeing them, hopefully I
will get a chance again soon.
But I wasn't disappointed with the other bands we
played with. Reverb Galaxy not only sounded great
but had an entertaining show and This Spy Surfs blew
me away. Great guitar work. I'm sorry I'm bad with
remembering names but an interesting tidbit I
didn't know - after our set finished, guitarist for
This Spy Surf asked me if we knew Tommy Klein,
Chicago guitarist. I said hell ya, he's helped
us out a couple times. Then he asked if we'd seen
"The Spy's Who Surf". I said of course, at Beat
Kitchen and they were awesome. One of the best live
surf bands I'd ever seen, within the top 5. He said
he was in that band with Tommy. That's the
correlation with band name. Now it makes sense why
they are called "This Spy Surfs".
Anyway thanks for the kindness and support and
for all those NESMA members that stayed late to see
us Otto's. It helped make it a memorable roadtrip.
PS: Thanks Joe from Reverb Galaxy for letting me use
your Deluxe Reverb. I dig Mashalls but they
definitely are my first choice for playing surf.
Let me jump on the gratitude bandwagon as well on
behalf of Reverb Galaxy. This was our second
Otto's Shindig (previous was July 05) and even more
fun than the first. The receptive crowd really gets
our blood up and helps us stretch to pull off a
better show. The other side of course is that when
you play for the surf intelligentsia, there's no
place to hide either (except perhaps behind the
Neptinas and some fog). A bit of carrot and stick to
motivate the performers. Plus big stiff drink-ees!
Thank you to Blue StingRaye, Stevie, Freddie, and
everyone else for their kind words. Our new drummer
Jeremy will be happy to know that he made a good
impression on his second time out with us. Jim our
bassist is also glad someone noticed his newest
girl, the swanky Jag bass. Like MacArthur and the
Terminator, and with Freddie's blessing, we vow to
And to Stevie regarding the Marshall, save that for
your Johnny Ramone moves. The Deluxe surfs as hard
any amp out there, as you well know from you own
back at home.
Joe, Reverb Galaxy