No band was more seminal to the L.A. punk scene than the gang of high school misfits who, in 1975, got expelled and formed a group called Germs . Centered around singer Darby Crash, the young quartet reinvented East Coast punk, playing faster, singing brasher, and planting seeds of hardcore punk. Crash died of an overdose in 1980, and the Germs disbanded, a brief but potent catalogue in their wake. Other than guitarist Pat Smear, who joined Nirvana (and later Foo Fighters), the Germs have been off the grid. Until Summer 2007, when What We Do Is Secret , a biopic on Darby Crash and the evolution of the Germs, played the L.A. film fest. Actor Shane West, who played Crash in the film, fit into Smear's plan to reunite the Germs, and this year, they're back live. The Germs play Casbah Thursday night with SoCal progeny Battalion of Saints and the Adolescents . Nu-punks the Atoms in the Atari Lounge.... If you miss the door at Casbah and have to get your punk rock on, recommend heading up to Bar Pink Elephant, where shepunks the Nightmares and Glossines show you why '08 will be the year local girls kick down that rock-roll barrier.... OB band Slightly Stoopid host "A Not So Stoopid Benefit" for wildfire victims at Belly Up. The Skunk recording artists released their seventh collection of fusion party rock, Chronicitis , this year. The Stoopids will be joined by Arm the Angels .... Down at Winstons, L.A. funk-jam trio Particle settles in for a two-night stint with guest guitarist Brian Jordan . Check their latest live CD/DVD Transformations for a primer.
Eddie Spaghetti and his Supersuckers lick Brick by Brick with country-punk Friday night. The Seattle-based Suckers are the self-proclaimed "greatest rock 'n' roll band in the world." Watching the 15-year vets live, you might believe it...at the least, you'll believe they believe it. Hard to, uh, swallow their new one, though, Live at the Whole Foods Market .... I am the son and the heir . Smiths tribute band Sweet and Tender Hooligans take over Casbah Friday and Saturday nights. If you're into Moz and the jaded crooner's pop, you'll appreciate the Hooligans' aping take. Cover Me Badd karaoke also on tap.... Sublime tribute 40 Oz. to Freedom fill the dance card at beach bar 'Canes. Local player Dane Scott (Tubby) nails the Long Beach trio's reggae rock and jams his hand into Sublime-y originals. Rude Boy Roots in support.... House of Blues books Rick Ortiz's Noches Rockeras, featuring L.A. Latin-rockers Santos de Los Angeles and locals First Class Fiction . Saturday 29
Jay Jenkins, aka Young Jeezy , takes the gang to House of Blues. The 30-year-old Atlanta-based rap artist came up in 2001 with hit disc Thuggin' Under the Influence and since has "earned his stripes" with Miami gunplay as a gangsta rapper. Cleared of that and then endeared to Katrina victims for his philanthropy, Young Jeez's got new life. Check last year's collection The Inspiration . Local hip-hoppers Dago Braves split the bill with similar "slow-flow" style.... Latin-jazz maestro Pete Escovedo and his orchestra settle into Anthropology Saturday and Sunday nights. The percussionist played in Santana and shares a family tree with Sheila E., Thomas "Coke," Alejandro, and local rocker Mario of the Dragons and MEX.... I'm your boogie man . KC and the Sunshine Band drag the corpse of disco dance music into 4th&B and reanimate the thing for the downtown crowd. "This is real imported Italian nylon."... English reggae vet Pato Banton , 25 years in the biz of "changing the world through music," brings his roadshow to Belly Up with the Love and Groove Band and DJ Carlos Culture .... SD pirate-rock trio Thee Corsairs sing Tales of Rum and Whiskey at Zombie Lounge. Red Cavalier and the Embalmers also on the bill. Sunday 30
"Could it be true? It must be a cold day in Hell!" reads the Casbah website re Creedle's reunion gig there Sunday night. Original lineup of Devon, Tim, Dion, and Cheme will resurrect the local jazz-punk act for this one-off. Dig out 1992 Cargo disc Half Man Half Pie and lick yer chops. Bunky, Donald Wislon, and Secret Fun Club round the bill.... Don't like pie? How 'bout crackers? David Lowery will front Cracker at Belly Up as they shill their latest folk-pop oddity Greenland , and then give you what you've all been waiting for: Camper Van Beethoven ! The Campers have been on again, off again since a 2002 reunion, and fan response keeps Lowery and his '80s indie act coming back. Caught these sets this year up at Pappy and Harriet's Pioneertown Palace in Joshua Tree. Wanna see it? Order up the Campout DVD. Only a matter of time before Monks of Doom amps up. Monday 31
Lots to unload this last night of '07, so get your Evelyn Wood on: If you missed Ziggy Shuffledust couple weeks back, Gary and gang will don the Bowie gear New Year's Eve at Bar Pink Elephant. Latin-flavored Beatles trib act Baja Bugs open.... San Fran psych-rockers Mother Hips and Billy Midnight will count it down at Casbah.... Check this greezy House of Blues buffet: Rev. Horton Heat, Hank III, and Nashville Pussy on the main stage and West of Memphis upstairs in the Voodoo room.... Los Angelino ska-rock quintet the Aggrolites alight on Belly Up's stage with local comers Grand Ole Party and L.A. party band Beatmo .... Big bass man Lee Rocker toasts Anthology with rockabilly.... Beauty Bar stages live 'lectronic sets from MayStar, Edgartronic, Groundfloor, and Wendy Darling .... And Victory Nightlife DJs host "Massive" at 4th&B. Check Their Myspace for packages.
Welcome to oh-eight. Good couple a nights to settle into them resolutions.... "Friends Chill" with boardgames and bee-bop at Whistle Stop.... And Josh Mullins MCs "Comedy Night" at Lestat's. Wednesday 2
Scraping... New North Park club U-31 will host an "Industry Night." More (or less) on U-31 as the new year progresses and the joint figgers out what it wants t'be -- we'll keep lookings for bookings... -- Barnaby Monk