David Parris: The best show I ever saw happened on May the 7 2004, Andrew W.K. and The Locust at the El Rey. I was just out of high school, fresh faced and ready to meet the world with the ironic detachment you can only really get at 19 years old. I had seen The Locust a few times at Chain Reaction in Anaheim so I knew what to expect, a 25 minute set of spastic noise and blast beats, exactly the kind of thing a kid who is too cool would be into.
Did I mention I was in a ska band? I should probably mention I was in a ska band, too cool really shouldn’t have been a thing. I’m still in a ska band. I’m 35. Either way, there was something else going on in the crowd that night, some kind of energy that you knew was something special. None of the AWK folks were really sure what to make of The Locust but they were feeling it.
Now I was not an AWK kind of guy, I figured “oh yeah, the party dude, I’ll go have a few laughs, whatever.” 19 year old cynical me was not prepared for the giant wall of sincerity that he was about to run into. It took 3 songs into Andrew W.K.’s set for me to be fully on board. The energy in the crowd from the moment he started until to moment he ended was…well…a party. When he told everyone mid-show “you could have been anywhere tonight, but you’re here and that means something” I absolutely bought it. It was goofy, sure, but that was just a way to get the message across, “you’re not alone, we’re all here to party together”. It was exactly what I needed to hear. Long live the party.
Half Past Two’s single “Mean Green” is out now.
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