The Zeros and Friends Return to the Whisky: The Whisky A Go Go is packed-to-bursting, the merch stand is selling purple wigs, and there’s a palpable buzz in the air that reminds us that, on nights like this, this historic venue is still a great place to see a gig. Yes, the Zeros are on the Strip to celebrate the 30th anniversary of their 4,3,2,1… Zeros album.

It’s fascinating, because these purple-haired glitter-punk creatures were a fixture on the Strip from about ’82, but didn’t release their debut album until 1991, just as grunge was kicking in. It’s also worth noting that this Zeros has nothing to do with the other local Zeros — the group formed in Chula Vista by Javier Escovedo in ’76 that was a mainstay in the L.A. punk scene. No, this was a much different, and gloriously sillier, proposition despite forming just six years later.

The original lineup of Sammy Serious, Danny Dangerous, Joe Normal and Mr. Insane (probably stage names) are reunited for this milestone event, and the Whisky is ready.

Before that, we’re treated to two excellent sets from two excellent bands. The Prophets of Addiction are, relatively speaking, a new band when it comes to the hair/glam metal thing. But the great thing about them is that they sound simultaneously fresh and familiar.

The band is the brainchild of Lesli Sanders, who was previously with Pretty Boy Floyd, Queeny Blast Pop, the Distractions, and many more. Songs such as “Reunite the Sinners” (surely not about the Zeros) are catchy, brilliantly written and performed, and genuinely exciting. There’s nothing dated about these guys, despite their callbacks to sleaze-punks such as Faster Pussycat and the New York Dolls.

Conversely, Motorcycle Boy were around back in the day but they still sound magnificent, if understatedly so. Frontman Francois looks like somebody sewed Lou Reed’s head onto Johnny Thunders’ body, and by god  they sound a bit like that too. There are certainly elements of Thunders’ Heartbreakers and Raw Power era Stooges about the super-cool rock & roll and, by the time they concluded with the ironic “I Hate the Sunset Strip,” we’re reminded of just how great Motorcycle Boy can be.

Sammy Serious, The Zeros (Brett Callwood)

That just left the Zeros to top this night off. There’s a gonzo-goofiness about the band, but that never distracts from the songs. Their section of the glam spectrum sees them blend the big glitter tunes of the likes of Slade and Sweet with proto-punk, in a manner reminiscent of the Dictators — brash and infectious.

Those 4,3,2,1… Zeros songs, such as “Love’s Not Fair” and “Zero to Mom” are huge fun. And the guys might have a few more miles on the clock but they give it everything. Danny Dangerous is a compelling sight — a sort of deranged, purple-haired mime.

All in all, a great night on the Strip.

LA Weekly