Sunday, March 02, 2008

New York Dolls, and the Bunklelife Theory of Rock and Roll Genetics

Anyone new to Bunklelife concert reviews might want to read this before continuing.

So, went to the New York Dolls at the Plaza club last night, perched right at the front of the balcony approximately 10 feet from the flown speakers (which accounts for the buzzing swan song of hearing death happening in my left ear, which for no logical reason I didn't put an ear plug in). We are the Fury opened up - their name was written on the kick drum, but from my angle I couldn't see the last word so spent the first half of their set wondering if their name was "We are the Fort", and thinking that is actually a pretty cool name for a band. I was a bit disappointed when I found out I was wrong. Fury is just so obvious. Anyway, they did their best to roll about 5 different glammy rocky posey trexrollingstonesdavidbowiesweet kinds of bands into one, and apart from finding that all a bit distracting I'll give them good marks for effort. And for spending so much time practicing the Mick Jagger back-arch pose. Video here.

New York Dolls were great. I find David Johansen infinitely entertaining - I think some of his solo stuff is great, and he did one of the best covers of Brecht's Alabama Song that I've heard. I could watch him brush his teeth and be quite content, so having him stalk around the stage in his glitter-girl blue shirt makes me happy as a clam. It apparently made a whole lot of people happy - the floor was packed, and bouncing...OK, thowing themselves violently around, not bouncing. The audience member of the month this time was one of the most violent "bouncers", shirtless, wearing a white feather boa sash-like across his chest (it was so wet from sweat it wasn't going anywhere). You'll find him in the bottom right corner of the crowd shot.

I took a few videos, and many many photos. I got caught videoing by the scarey sound guy (mentioned under The Sound in this post), and was told still photos were allowed, but no videoing the band. Gotta say in this day and age, it surprises me no end that they try to put any controls on photos or videos at this kind of gig. Certainly, in a sit down venue where it could be distracting, I understand. But come on now...audience member videos (I would think) become one of the standard ways a band can - at no effort to themselves - market to a larger audience. Don't get it. Anyway, the video coppers didn't shut me down until I had a few videos already, and I'll be posting them, rebel that I am.

So - now the moment you've been waiting for: my Theory of Rock and Roll Genetics. It seems to me that there is a distinct physical type of rock star that blossomed in the 70s - extremely lean build, distinct nasolabial folds, big mouth (think: trout like), with an overriding tendency to prance instead of walk. Cases in point: David Johansen, Mick Jagger, Steven Tyler. What I find really interesting is that nature has found a way of weeding this particular physical type out by giving them the talent and ego necessary to be rock stars. As rock stars, they have access to females of the species that are near the very top of contemporary standards of physical beauty. They reproduce, and instead of ending up with mini prancing trouts, they end up producing beautiful offspring. Now, I am not sure if this goes for David Johansen - I don't know if he has children or not. But I think I'm onto something. Is he the last of a dying breed?

I certainly hope not.


Anonymous said...

"Nasolabial folds" - thx! Can't wait to tell Pete T....

PS. Sexy lean prancing trouts? Was this the cat's theory? And it's true!

PSS Yay NYD's!

haikugirl said...

Love your genetic theorizing. Mick and Jade and Steven and Liv support your case perfectly. Too bad David J looks more like a Hobbit than a rock star.