October 20, 2011
Better than... bands they've influenced like the Chili Peppers and No Doubt.
We had actually forgotten about one of our gnarliest rock pit injuries -- a bruise on the face -- received at a Fishbone show some 15 or so years ago. That is, until last night. Planting ourselves right up front for their gig at the Bootleg Theater, we knew we'd be in for some bouncin' (and badass pics), but guess we sort of forgot just how combustible the band still is even after three decades.
Angelo Moore still sweats his soul out and stage dives and crowd surfs, and the crowd follows suit. Fans slam into you to show affection and elation, and the harder it is, the more love you feel. People of all ages and colors communed for a rhythmic celebration that blended mutliple genres at their most visceral: funk, punk, jazz, ska, rock and soul.
The wildly mixed 20-song set last night sort of punctuated the points made earlier in the evening when the band's bio-doc, Everyday Sunshine, screened in Bootleg's adjoining room. Fishbone has always referenced many different styles of music and it's garnered them adoration from fans and fellow musicians in Los Angeles since they began. But as Flea notes in the film, mainstream masses (and record execs) tend to want music more simplified.
The backbone of the band -- Angelo Moore and Norwood Fisher -- never went the simple route and they never "sold out." They may not enjoy the level of their peers' success -- No Doubt, Jane's Addiction and the Chili Peppers, all of whom sing the band's praises in the film --but it seems they wouldn't have it any other way.
During the Q&A after the screening, someone asked why the above biggies haven't taken the band on tour with them. Fisher said they have, and he revealed that he and Moore have turned down offers as well. "It's gotta be right, " he said.