Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Crime pays: OG San Francisco "punks" offer rare live appearance 

Wednesday, Feb 20 2008

Fishbone is the quintessential hyphenated combo. From its inception in 1979, the spazztastic Los Angeles septet has been mashing genres, pioneering a ska-punk-thrash-funk sound that's as fresh, feral, and nutty as ever. Yet mainstream success has long been elusive for the band. Unlike the Red Hot Chili Peppers, onetime wildcats with whom the group came up back in the day, Fishbone never "matured." Titles on its latest high-energy album, Still Stuck in Your Throat, testify to the band's arrested adolescence: "Jack Ass Brigade," "Let Dem Ho's Fight," "Party with Saddam." This refusal to tone down the juvenile attitude means shows are still a free-for-all: hot hot hot, sweat-stinky, and over-the-top F-U-N. Skank for yourself on Friday, Feb. 22, when Fishbone plays the Independent at 9 p.m. Admission is $15; call 771-1421 or visit for more info. — Sam Prestianni

History credits the Buzzcocks as the first British punk band: They self-released their debut EP in 1976. That same year, S.F.'s Crime unleashed its 45 "Hot Wire My Heart" — later covered by Sonic Youth — making that band America's premier punk combo. Crime epitomized what punk was really about, stripping rock 'n' roll to its basics and kicking the energy level up a notch or three. Attitude? In spades: Early punks draped themselves in torn T's and jeans, while Crime came on like rockabilly greasers from hell in their SFPD uniforms. Two original Crime-inals are, alas, deceased, leaving Johnny Strike and Hank Rank to carry on with Pat Ryan (the Nuns) on drums and bassist Michael Lucas (Phantom Surfers). Crime recently released a new LP, Exalted Masters, and performs a rare live show on Friday, Feb. 22, at Café du Nord at 9 p.m. Admission is $10; call 861-5016 or visit for more info. — Mark Keresman

In the mid-1980s, the Meat Puppets' frontman Curt Kirkwood brought wah-wah-drenched guitar pyrotechnics to the mosh pit. He stunned the hardcore kids with fleeting fretwork copped from Grateful Dead licks and a brain cracked from doing acid by the gallon in the Arizona desert. Built to Spill did as much for the guitar in the '90s (and has showed little sign of slowing down since) by coating tear-jerking pop with intricate six-string swells that often climax with epic metal codas. If you've been waiting for a show that satisfies your conflicting desires to spend money on either guitar lessons or a night out, you may have just stumbled upon the deal of the century. Catch the Meat Puppets and Built to Spill on Sunday, Feb. 24, and Monday, Feb. 25, at the Fillmore at 8 p.m. Admission is $25; call 346-6000 or visit for more info. — John Garmon

The Countless Others match raw Who riffs with a swift, clever style (à la the Make Up) that underscores frontman Tim Tinderholt's pitch-perfect pop-screams. Since the band's idols also include the legendary Sonics and Billy Childish's Buff Medways, it's no wonder these local kids know how to make even the most lethargic hipster dance like there's hot coals in them floor tiles. (But for those who demand extra incentives, the Others' lineup does include a dancing tambourine man.) The Countless Others recently released a home-recorded seven-inch split with mutual Santa Cruz scene transplants the Loyal Sons and Daughters, and are at work on a debut full-length. This week the Countless Others are sandwiched between the Rantouls and local jangle-fuzzers the Mantles on Monday, Feb. 25, at the Knockout at 9 p.m. Admission is $8; call 550-6994 or visit for more info. — Jess Scott

Cuban trumpeter Arturo Sandoval is classically trained, but his versatility has led him to perform with a diverse array of iconic singers, from Patti LaBelle and Gloria Estefan to Frank Sinatra (Sandoval's solos on Sinatra's Duets II still cause goose bumps). The Miami resident has also appeared alongside symphony orchestras around the world, and has won numerous Grammys. On his latest disc, Rumba Palace, Sandoval goes back to his pre-Irakere roots, delivering a straightforward selection of original tunes that bear an Afro-Cuban feel similar to that of Buena Vista Social Club. Arturo Sandoval performs from Tuesday, Feb. 26, to Sunday, March 2, at Yoshi's in San Francisco. Admission is $34-$42; call 655-5600 or visit for more info. — Ernest Barteldes


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"