A lot of great punk influenced, dirgy rock bands have spilled out of the Northwest in the last two decades. One of my favorites was Seattle's Murder City Devils
, a fiery group of troublemakers with a frontman (Spencer Moody, whose music made for an apt last name) who bellowed about drinking whiskey and the mistakes that came from hanging with that brown demon. The last time I saw the band in San Francisco was at Bottom of the Hill I believe, when they were so drunk they could barely make it through their set, half apologizing as they slurred and stumbled through songs equally brutal and uplifting in their aggression.
Since the Devils split (after a Halloween show in 2001) the band members have gone on to tour the world in various projects. Bassist Derek Fudesco was in Pretty Girls Make Graves
(R.I.P.); guitarist Dann Galluci played with Modest Mouse
for a bit and is in the more experimental Triumph of Lethargy Skinned Alive to Death
with Moody; and drummer Coady Willis (one of the best living drummers in rock 'n' roll) is in Big Business
and the Melvins
Reason I'm bringing all this up is after playing a reunion show in Seattle, the Murder City Devils are taking another tentative step back into the spotlight with a short West Coast tour in February. Their "Idle Hands" will be all over Great American Music Hall on Sunday, Feb. 15. Here's hoping they're a little more sober -- but just as crazy -- as that last time I saw the band. - Jennifer Maerz