Clutch: Back in ’88 I went down to the old 9:30 club in Washington D.C. with my older brother to see Circle Jerks. The show was sold out but we hung around the ticket office for a little while anyways because you could hear the music pretty well without seeing anything. The next week I went back to the same club to see Social D. Full on mascara and bloody rags. I bought a shirt that self destructed in a matter of weeks.
Prong: Black Oak Arkansas at Howard Stein’s Academy of Music on 14th street in Manhattan. Jo Jo Gunne opening. I was like 10 years old. I heard “jim Dandy” on the radio and thought it was cool. Then I saw them on tv and I had to see them live. My older brother took me and he was angry because he hated them.
I was hooked when I saw Jim Dandy Mangrum. Now that was a rock star!
What is the best gig that you ever played/performed?
Clutch: I remember having a great time at the Bonnaroo Festival the year 2010. We ended up playing three performances. One acoustic Clutch set, one instrumental Bakerton Group set, and finally a full-on Clutch set that really felt amazing. The Bakerton Group set was one of the most energetic BG shows I can remember playing.
Prong: Probably a recent one where Prong did the entire “Beg To Differ ” record from start to finish. We just did a tour of Europe a month back playing that and other songs. It was a long set. The best show of the tour was at the famous Nottingham Rock City in the U.K. It was challenging for me to relearn
a lot of those songs, solos , riffs and vocals. Also we reverted to the original tuning of E. I can’t remember when the last time I had to stretch to that range. But I pulled it off and to have a successful show back in the capital of metal in England where Prong first had any recognition back in the day was rewarding.
What is the best gig you have ever seen?
Clutch: There were two shows I can remember from way back that have had a big influence on me. The first was seeing the Bad Brains for the first time. The 9:30 club in ’89 I think. I was pretty close to the stage as they came out to start. As soon as Earl hit four drum clicks to start the song HR does a backflip and the crowd became a swarm of locusts. That’s how I remember it at least! The other show was Nomeansno at DC Space. Same year I think. I had a 7″ of theirs before this show but afterwards I immediately bought everything I could find. Awesome punk rock from Vancouver.
Prong: That’s tough of course, because I’ve witnessed some killer historical gigs. I saw Kiss headline their first arena show ever. It was at the Nassau Coliseum on new years eve 1975. It was general admission so we got there at like 3pm and there was already about 5,000 crazy maniacs swarming the gates.
This was back in the day where security wasn’t figured out yet. And back then no matter what age most were carrying bottles of booze and smoking dope and on whatever drug you can find. It was absolute chaos. Kids couldn’t wait to get in so police barricades where used to smash the glass doors at the
entrances. That made the show even better. We had great seats and got to see the greatest band in the land at their prime. No band had bombs and fire before! No one had rising drum kits. When they came out to “Deuce” and everyone saw that flashing KISS logo it was nothing that anyone saw at a rock show before. It was amazing.
What is the gig you would most like to play?
Clutch: Over the last few years we have started playing more and more festivals throughout the year. Those are always incredible experiences. We get to play to thousands of people, hopefully make some new friends. It’s also a great time to see old friends from bands we know and love to watch. Anytime we have an opportunity to play a festival we take it.
Prong: Although it sounds a bit old fashioned, I wouldn’t mind Prong opening for Metallica. In reality, it doesn’t get bigger than that for a metal band of any subgenre. They kind of bring everyone together.
What would be the lineup for your dream gig?
Clutch: I’m still waiting to see the original Black Sabbath line-up.
Prong: As a spectator I’m a bit jaded because I saw most of my old faves when they meant something back in the day like I eluded to earlier. I’m talking anything from the Ramones, or the Dead Boys and Damned at CBGB, VonLmo or Wayne County at Max’s Kansas City,Judas Priest or Johnny Winter, UFO or Rush
and Cheap Trick at the Academy of Music, Misfits at the Ritz, Killing Joke at the Underground, the lists goes on. If you could package all the great gigs in New York I attended into some sort of time warp festival and have Prong as an opener, that would be the only thing to dream about.
Catch Clutch and Prong, Thursday, July 19th @ 40 Watt