The Misfits rise in Denver
The Misfits brought old-school Jersey attitude to Denver Sunday night, reminding fans that Pauly D was far from the first punk to come out of the Garden State rocking a bad haircut, oversized arms and swagger to burn.
To be clear: The current Misfits lineup includes only one member of the legendarily scary late-'70s punk band. Bassist Jerry Only has since taken over lead vocals, with former Black Flag guitarist Dez Cadena on guitar and Eric Arce on drums.
It's not a major problem that Only's voice isn't the most menacing ever to front the band — former singer Michale Graves showed that the Misfits sound works even better with a little shine under the grime. What is a problem is the way the live show seemed arranged specifically to keep Only at the kind of mid-range evil drone that stopped being interesting in the '80s. Even a diehard Misfits fan couldn't argue that the band's songs are terribly distinct, and Only's deadpan delivery didn't help matters. It's a shame, too, because many of the great new lyrics (largely written by Only) deserve to be belted out with murderous conviction.
Still, it was a rush to see two punk veterans plying their trade in person and the crowd responded accordingly. Crowd surfing and circle pits were constant, and opening acts Juicehead, Potato Pirates and St. Fall Apart all enjoyed ecstatic receptions. It was the kind of show Summit Music Hall was made for. — Matt Farley, Metromix