Ventura Theater presents,
Fri, December 12, 2014
Doors: 7:00 pm / Show: 8:00 pmVentura Theater
This event is all ageshttps://www.venturatheater.net/event/711589/
The Golden State represents power and possibility to many around the world, a place where dreams are made but nightmares might come true. The cultural epicenter that is California has been defined by so many monumental mile markers, from the silent film era to skid row, from Disneyland to Ronald Reagan, from celebrity excess to social unrest. Straight Outta Compton, Suffer, Master of Puppets, Fresh Fruit for Rotting Vegetables – as the late Tupac Shakur famously said, Cali is where “we riot, not rally.”
Few bands have endured with as much demonstrably California-encompassing vibrancy as the Hermosa Beach, CA institution that is Pennywise. They reign unchallenged, outside the margins of the mainstream, a staple on the SoCal radio airwaves and worldwide festival circuit revered and championed by generations of fans filling theaters and clubs.
Pennywise possess the power to merge the subversive with the celebratory. Each Pennywise record is chock full of fast-paced anthems expertly engineered to inspire radical change, personal empowerment, relentless hijinks, and reckless fast times. On paper it may read like a mess of contradictions, but on record, it sounds like California.
At this point, three decades since the band’s DIY beginnings, Pennywise classics like “Same Old Story,” “Fuck Authority,” “Alien,” “Homesick,” and “Bro Hymn” are as fundamental to punk rock and hardcore as stage dives and guitars.
The combustible chemistry between the diverse creative personalities within Pennywise delivers some the culture’s strongest songs, obliterating the boring sameness of easygoing attitudes with a push-and-pull process that hammers the strongest songwriting and performances from each individual into a remarkable cohesive whole.
The defiantly titled Never Gonna Die is the first full album of brand new songs with singer Jim Lindberg, guitarist Fletcher Dragge, drummer Byron McMackin, and bassist Randy Bradbury in over ten years. It’s as timely as it is timeless, charging head first into the chaos of the current climate of the world with the tried-and-true determined sound the Pennywise faithful demand. Never Gonna Die was forged in the same space where the band penned classic songs with late bassist Jason Thirsk and produced once again by rock producer and close collaborator Cameron Webb (Motörhead, NOFX, Alkaline Trio).
“We Set Fire Tonight” is a furious resistance anthem challenging the “austerity measures” around the world that deny basic social services to the most vulnerable.
“American Lies” cuts through the fog of disinformation and disingenuous worldviews, rejecting partisan posturing in favor of true patriotism. “Can’t Be Ignored” is both selfexamination and societal exhortation, addressing the ravenous hunger for more that shatters the spirit and could literally destroy the world as we know it.
The title track demands an evolutionary shift in consciousness, pleading to put hundreds of years of dogma to rest, to never accept those prejudices are “Never Gonna Die.”
“Live While You Can (Time Bomb)” is the Pennywise take on the timeless adages to live while you can, enjoy today, and never let the bastards get you down. “Goodbye Bad Times” further emphasizes the holistic side of the band’s ethos, a steadfast reminder of the power of encouragement, personal empowerment and communal interdependence.
As ever, touring across the world playing with and playing to likeminded rabble rousers and mischief makers, Pennywise summon all the best and brightest of SoCal punk spirit, consciously exposing the world’s flaws as well as their own, and celebrating life loudly.
As the terrifying clown who shares the band’s namesake returns to the pop culture consciousness, via a massively well-received movie adaptation and its forthcoming sequel, so too has Pennywise – the band – reemerged at their absolute strongest. Forbes Magazine said, “It doesn’t just float, It soars.” Pennywise? They effin’ scorch.
Their uplifting, (some would say zany) pure punk, melodic-pop style has remained in tact for over twenty years!
Ever since the break-up of the Ramones, the Dickies hold the title of being the oldest active punk band in the land. These guys have released records and played punk shows in FOUR different decades. Yowzers! The band's epic career is matched only by their wacky high-octane live performances. With Stan Lee's buzzsaw guitar and frontman Leonard's demented dance moves, the Dickies remain as one of the most rockin' bands around today.
No fire-breathing or acrobatic posturing for these veterans; Leonard's repertoire consists of inflatable dolls, scuba gear, and a large penis puppet named Stewart. Now that's entertainment!
The story of how the Dickies came to be on Fat Wreck Chords is a modern-day punk rock fable of fate. Fat Wreck prez Fat Mike got his portly paws on a four song demo in 1996 and contacted the Dickies in hopes of releasing a full length. Upon receiving the first call from Fat Mike, Stan had this to say: "Who?" Stan then called up Leonard in hopes that he could enlighten him about this mythical Fat recording company. Leonard responded in kind with a "Fat what?" Someone in the Dickies camp knew what's what however, and encouraged the band to work with Fat Mike. So not long after Stan explained to Mike that they "have a whole record worth of shit." Now you may be wondering why it is that the full length was not released until 2001. Well folks, Stan lied. But hey, all's well that ends well!
Their legacy of recorded works (ahem, trying not to get too carried away here) includes the groundbreaking (sure, why not?) Incredibly Shrinking Dickies, the sophomore(ic) Dawn of the Dickies, the indie-punk classic Stukas Over Disneyland, the prophetic Second Coming, the EP built around their theme song to the cult-hit movie Killer Klowns from Outer Space, and the long player Idjit Savant. Then came Dogs From the Hare That Bit Us, an all-covers collection. It was in 1996 that the Dickies met up with Fat Mike and agreed to release the 7″, My Pop the Cop on Fat Wreck Chords. This led to the inevitable release of their latest and greatest full length, All This And Puppet Stew.
It is reasonably safe to say that the Dickies are perennial favorites the world over, adored by fans ranging from grizzled geez-punks to kids not yet born when the Dickies were first incredibly shrinking.
The release of All This And Puppet Stew will surely breathe some life into the lungs of the Dickies and the punk scene. These furious fogeys may be old, but they tour like young'uns! They can still pull full U.S. tours and have been to both Europe and Japan in the last year. Catch the Dickies on tour and in your pants soon, and be on the look out for Leonard and his maniacal stage props!
26 S. Chestnut St.
Ventura, CA, 93001