Posts Tagged ‘Concert’

Art, music, fashion, photography, live entertainment, and more all collided into one epic weekend last week in Downtown Santa Ana as the Konsept Art & Music Festival returned for its sixth year running. In the past, this festival had only taken place on one day. This year, due to its rising popularity, it has expanded to take over the streets of Downtown Santa Ana, as well as take place over three days. Free to attend for all ages, this festival brought dozens of local vendors selling apparel and accessories, dozens of local musicians, and lots of people for the miniature skate park constructed at the southern parking lot in front of the Yost Theater. Since this took place on the streets and occurred concurrently with a Dia de los Muertos street fair, a lot of street closures occurred at Downtown Santa Ana, creating a gigantic traffic cluster. For those with the patience, they got to enjoy two free street fairs this past weekend, making for a fun afternoon out with friends and family. Keep these events in mind for next year when it comes back again.

One of the bigger punk rock events of this calendar year, the 2015 Punk Rock Picnic returned this past Saturday to Marina Green in Long Beach. Featuring over 50 bands across six stages and extreme sports athletes, this all-day all-ages concert showed that punk rock never died, and lives stronger than ever. Most of the bands hailed from Southern California, such as Agent Orange, Angry Samoans, Yeastie Boys, Ill Repute, The Gears, and many more. This concert also brought a lot of bands out of a hiatus, such as Amerikan Made, Agression, One Less Zero, and some others. Despite an outdoor concert lasting all day at the start of summer, the overcast prevented the day from getting too hot, and made for the perfect outdoor setting. Attendees who arrived early enough got to enjoy a great amount of bands while getting a good amount of exercising due to the two main stages situated at opposite ends of the park, the four side stages in between, and the various vendors plus skate ramp along the center.

Perhaps what lingers on the minds of most of the people revolve around how the Punk Rock Picnic ended. Certainly if anyone left prior to approximately 8:30pm, they would have had the time of their lives. Unfortunately, the city police shut down the event at 8:50pm due to 1) complaints from people living on the yachts nearby, 2) rowdy & violent attendees, and 3) people loitering in the parking lots doing drugs, making noise, and causing trouble. Not surprising, the people got violent due to this news of losing their headliners of Cockney Rejects and Discharge; however, this event’s history only amplified the people’s rage. Punk Rock Picnic got unexpectedly shut down in 2013 because the Queen Mary embodies the absolute worst corporate archetype when it comes to hosting events, exemplifying their level of greed on inconceivable levels. But of course, as punks do, they point a finger at the nearest living object: the organizers of Punk Rock Picnic. This led to bad press and carried over to 2014, preventing the return of Punk Rock Picnic that year. Fast forward to 2015 where the organizers valiantly tried to resurrect Punk Rock Picnic, another unfortunate circumstance had befallen them again with the untimely shutdown of the event. As punks do, they point a finger at the nearest living object, blaming the organizers for the loss of the headliners.

In hindsight, for $45, the value of this concert will vary with each individual. People who arrived early enough to catch the early bands certainly would have gotten their money’s worth. Does the loss of the two headliners merit the people’s rage? After all, the 2013 Punk Rock Picnic never even happened! At least the 2015 Punk Rock Picnic almost completed a 100% run. Heck, I would consider this all a successful event if not for punks acting like punks. Think about the cost to get in, and the value brought forward by this concert. Bands like these normally play local shows for less than $10, and you get like four or five bands. Here, you get over 50 bands all in one venue in one day for one cost. If a 4-band show costs $5, that already amounts to over $60. The caveat revolves around the value of seeing Cockney Rejects and Discharge, as most of the attendees place a greater value of seeing those two bands. If we place an artificial value of $10 for each of them, that makes all the other 50+ bands value at about $40, which still represents a great deal.

Do punks ever truly think about numbers like this? No. Their linear thought process only allows them to see as far as you can on a dense foggy morning. If a corporate or professional entity put on this event, then it would not carry the same underground punk rock feel. Since a handful of locals built this from the ground up, one can only expect so much. To everyone complaining about the loss of the headliners, how about YOU try to set up an all-day punk rock concert without relying on corporate backing? Concerts like Warped Tour and FYF run without a hitch, but those have sold out to corporate a long time ago, and no longer carry the traditional punk rock environment of the old days. As for the Punk Rock Picnic, I have greatly enjoyed them the past few times that I have attended, and I do not foresee this returning ever again under the same name. To the organizers: stick with small shows – find a venue, and just do shows with four or five bands. This has worked for many organizers everywhere, and should allow you to stay in the game.

Anyways, enough of my ranting – I captured over a hundred photos at the Punk Rock Picnic, so take a look at how it all went down. If the photo links die, you can view them all in my Facebook album.

Following the mishap of losing the headliners, I do not foresee the Punk Rock Picnic returning any time soon, at least not under the same organizers. If Southern California will ever get another punk rock concert like this again not aligned with a corporate entity, it will have different organizers or a different name. Sayonara Punk Rock Picnic – I will forever have fond memories of all the Punk Rock Picnics that I have attended and all the awesome bands that I have met.

An Orange County original, the 2015 Punk Rock Picnic returns this Saturday to Marina Green in Long Beach after a catastrophe in 2013 and taking 2014 off. Featuring over 60 bands across six stages and extreme sports athletes, this all-day all-ages concert will show that punk rock never died, and lives stronger than ever. As for the reason why they took two years off, basically the organizer bit off more than he could chew in 2013, and the event completely fell apart, leaving hundreds of people concert-less with a $40 piece of paper. Since then, the event received terrible publicity, and many did not expect to ever see anything come back out of it. Luckily, that unexpected day will return this Saturday.

Regular admission costs $45, while children 12 and under get in for $25. This event does not allow ins & outs, so make sure that you can endure the sunny weather for the entire day. This time, the concert features a more realistic lineup of bands, many of which hail from Southern California, such as Agent Orange, Angry Samoans, Yeastie Boys, Ill Repute, Agression, The Gears, Shattered Faith, and many more. Of the bands not from Southern California, definitely check out Cockney Rejects, Discharge, and The Meatmen. Personally, I look forward to seeing Amerikan Made, One Less Zero, Whitekaps, Hollywood Hate, and any other band I can squeeze into my day. Regardless of the bands listed here, everyone should really check out as many bands as possible to support the local music scene. I will admit that I have my doubts about returning to this event, but I will give it a second chance to see if they can truly escape the hole that they fell into two years ago, and you should give it a chance too.

Legendary punk band 7 Seconds recently went on a US summer tour that started in July, and that tour ended in California last week. This past Saturday, they played the second-to-last show of their tour at the Glass House in Pomona to a sold-out wild crowd. Tickets had just sold out that day, so any fan had plenty of time to obtain a ticket. For those that did not, fret not, for I have a brief recap of the night.

Opening the night, we have Anti-Christ Demon Core, stylized as ACxDC. This grindcore band held nothing back as they started their set, immediately driving the crowd into a frenzied circle pit. The pit subsided quick though, leaving only a few boys to raise ruckus by slamming into people. Although they have a huge following of their own, their music reminds me of Converge, a very popular metalcore band. ACxDC’s strong fan base gives them a great crowd wherever they go, regardless of the type of venue or show.

Up next, The Copyrights took to the stage to start their set. Although classified as a pop-punk band, they sound nothing like mainstream pop-punk bands, performing a sound of their own along the likes of Teenage Bottlerocket and Millencolin. Nearly everyone present had definitely heard The Copyrights’ music before, but many could not put a name to the face. Anyone with a punk-themed Pandora station will have heard The Copyrights, such as one of their more recognizable songs, Charlie Birgertime. They played a solid fun set, not coming off as too poppy for the crowd.

At last, the big moment of the night arrived when JFA appeared on stage. Some may argue that the night’s true headliners did not play last. When you put things into perspective, JFA does hold more of a legacy than any of the other bands in the night. All other bands acknowledged the significance of JFA playing at this show, yet JFA only went second-to-last. This truly tested the energy of the crowd, as it appeared that the entire room expended all of their adrenaline into this one set. This did not happen without meaning – JFA always delivers a brutal performance not fit for the faint of heart. They started with We Know You Suck, and from there, chaos ensued as the venue’s security could not maintain the crowd any longer. One by one, fans jumped over the railing, onto the stage, then jumped back into the crowd, kicking any unaware fans in the front, including me. Other songs in their set included Lowrider, Johnny D, Charlie Brown, and Beach Blanket Bongout. Check out a JFA show soon and experience why so many punk rock bands and fans regard them as legends.

The tension in the room expanded vastly as the anticipation for 7 Seconds reached peak levels. With no real surprises or tricks up their sleeves, 7 Seconds delivered an exciting show to all the eager fans in attendance. They wasted little time transitioning between songs, opting to play songs into the start of the next song. Some of their more recognizable songs came towards the end, with Walk Together Rock Together serving as the final song of the encore, so those who remained in the concert hall the entire time could rock out with everyone else. The rest of the set contained plenty of old songs with some new songs thrown in there. Of course 7 Seconds would play Regress and Young Till I Die, but they also surprised the crowd with a cover of Sham 69’s If The Kids Are United. Despite the legacy status of 7 Seconds, the crowd did not get nearly as wild as they did during JFA, likely because they all ran out of energy during JFA’s set. This indicates nothing about the enthusiasm of the crowd, as the pit did stretch back all the way to the back wall. After all these years, 7 Seconds still has the young spirit in them to perform intense shows like this, just like their songs states that they will stay young until they die.

Miss out on this show? Make sure you LIKE the Facebook pages of all the bands that performed in this show. They will always post information regarding upcoming shows there first, so hit them up!

LA Restaurant Week
July 14-27
Greater Los Angeles Area
http://www.discoverlosangeles.com/dinela-los-angeles-restaurant-week

Hundreds of restaurants in the Greater Los Angeles Area will participate in this 12-day feast. All participating restaurants will offer either discounts on select items, or prix-fixe menus.

World Series of Beach Volleyball
July 22-27
Alamitos Beach, Long Beach
http://www.wsobv.com/

This unprecedented event brings the world’s greatest beach volleyball players and their fans together for a week-long celebration of the summer. Festivities will include including sports, music, local culture, food, drinks, activities, and more. Visitors may attend any of the events for free, while premium seating for the broadcast events comes with a price.

Suburban Legends @ Irvine Regional Park
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, July 24
Irvine Regional Park, Orange
http://ocparks.com/

Various parks around Orange County will host FREE and all-ages concerts this summer. This Thursday night, see local ska band Suburban Legends perform an unforgettable set. Food trucks will arrive to keep guests fed too.

The Aquabats: 20th Anniversary Tour
7:00 pm – 12:00 am, July 24
House of Blues, San Diego
http://www.houseofblues.com/sandiego/events/eventdetail/?viewNav=/event-detail&eventId=0A004C7F8C773E31&oid=0

The Aquabats continue their 20th Anniversary Tour, which sweeps through San Diego this week. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $22.

Naked Aggression @ Dipiazzas
7:00 pm – 1:00 am, July 24
Dipiazzas, Long Beach
http://www.facebook.com/events/612597165505632/

Local hardcore punk bands invade Dipiazzas this Thursday night for an all-ages show. Nobody has posted the cover charge, so have some cash available for that. Guests can find plenty of free parking in the neighborhood behind Dipiazzas.

Sarah’s Birthday Extravaganza
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, July 24
Blacklight District Lounge, Long Beach
http://www.facebook.com/events/253698728156721/

Local punk bands will tear it up this Thursday night in Long Beach. The cover for this show costs $8. No one under 21 may attend.

US Open of Surfing
July 25 – August 3
Huntington Beach, south of the pier
http://www.usopenofsurfing.com/

This week-long competition takes place on the shore south of Huntington Beach Pier. Come see professional and amateur surfers compete to take a spot for the ASP World Tour. Visitors will also find skateboarding demos and live music all week. Completely free to attend, this weekend will see thousands of spectators on the beach for the US Open. Expect heavy traffic all week. Try to find parking in the neighborhoods, but prepare to walk a long distance if choosing to park in neighborhoods, since the neighborhoods closer to the beach will remain full all week.

2014 Body Art Expo
2:00 pm – 11:00 pm, July 25
11:00 am – 11:00 pm, July 26
11:00 am – 8:00 pm, July 27
Fairplex, Pomona
http://www.bodyartexpo.com/

Check out this all-ages tattoo expo running all weekend at the Fairplex in Pomona. Hundreds of tattoo artists from across the nation will fly in this weekend to deliver their works of art onto willing bodies. The expo will also feature live tribute bands, freak shows, a beer garden, hot body contests, tattoo contests, plenty of merchandise vendors, and more. Attendees interested in receiving ink should book an appointment with an artist – walking up to the artist may result in nothing if the artist fills up his or her schedule early. One-day admission costs $20, while a 3-day admission costs $45. Children under 10 enter for free with a paid adult admission, but note that no vendor will provide a tattoo or piercing to children. Please bring cash for parking, which may range from $5 to $10.

Summer Take Over
4:00 pm – 12:00 am, July 25
Toxic Youth Productions, Hemet
http://www.facebook.com/events/545013425615244/

Tons of great Southern California punk bands will play a show this Friday evening in Hemet. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $12 presale or $15 at the door.

Monterey Park Night Market
5:00 pm – 10:30 pm, July 25
Barnes Park, Monterey Park
http://mpknightmarket.com/

The popularity of night markets has surged within the past year. This Friday, Monterey Park gets their very own night market, complete with free admission. Come to this all-ages outdoor fair this Friday night, and check out all the food, drinks, desserts, merchandise, live entertainment, and more. Expect heavy traffic approaching this area, especially for a Friday night, so plan your commute accordingly.

24th Annual Taste of Yorba Linda
6:00 pm – 10:30 pm, July 25
Yorba Linda Community Center, Yorba Linda
http://www.yorbalindachamber.org/

Sample the best of food & drinks in Yorba Linda this Friday evening. For $45 presale or $55 at the door, guests get treated to a night of unlimited food tastings plus two drink tickets good for beer or wine. Guests may reserve a table for ten for $100.

A Little Bit of Chemical X – Chicks That Rock
8:00 pm – 2:00 am, July 25
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim
http://www.facebook.com/events/1425526291044471/

See some great local female-fronted bands at The World Famous Doll Hut this Friday night. The cover for this show costs $5. No one under 21 may attend.

33rd Annual Cypress 5K & 10K Run + 34th Annual Cypress Community Festival
6:00 am – 5:00 pm, July 26
Oak Knoll Park, Cypress
http://cypressfestival.com/

Two events occur back-to-back this Saturday in Cypress. Starting early in the morning, participate in a 5K or 10K run through the streets of Cypress. Following the run, a FREE all-ages & all-day festival will take place at the nearby park. Bring the family out to enjoy this fair with a car show, food, drinks, games, rides, arts & crafts, live entertainment, vendors, and more.

9th Annual Dog Days of Summer
9:00 am – 4:00 pm, July 26
The Park, La Habra Heights
http://www.petprescriptionteam.com/events.html

Want a little exercise, socialization, and bonding with your dog? Come enjoy dog contests, custom pet products and animal adoptions. Completely free to attend for all ages, vendors will display the latest dog products and much more. Expect to see over 50 vendors, dog contests, live music, food, an agility course, a doggie photo booth, doggie crafts and more.

Long Beach Dragonboat Fest
9:00 am – 6:00 pm, July 26-27
Marine Stadium, Long Beach
http://www.lbdragonboat.com/

Come watch numerous teams race Dragonboats in Marine Stadium, with the finals on Sunday. Expect to see Chinese traditional art demonstrations, Chinese Acrobats, traditional dance, hip hop, music and martial arts performances. Spectators may attend and watch for free.

Belmont Shore Summer Sidewalk Sale
10:00 am – 6:00 pm, July 26-27
Along 2nd Street, Long Beach
http://www.belmontshore.org/events.html

Various shops in Belmont Shore will offer sales on their items. Many shops will also place their items out on the sidewalk for people to browse as they walk by.

6th Annual Venice Beach Summer Fest
10:00 am – 7:00 pm, July 26-27
Venice Beach
http://www.fx3events.com/

See arts, crafts, music, food, drinks, and more at Venice Beach this weekend, free admission. Keep in mind the heavy traffic near this area this weekend. Expect to park somewhere near Abbot Kinney and walk to the beach from there.

Renegade Craft Fair
11:00 am – 6:00 pm, July 26-27
Grand Park, Los Angeles
http://www.renegadecraft.com/losangeles

This free and all-ages fair at Grand Park will have arts, crafts, music, foodtrucks, drinks, and more. Come see the alternative side of arts & crafts this weekend.

Polycot Release Day
11:00 am – 12:00 am, July 26
Hangar 24 Brewery, Redlands
http://www.facebook.com/events/530284870431293/

Hangar 24 Brewery will release their annual local summer brew this Saturday at their tasting room in Redlands. Visitors to the tasting room can enjoy this apricot beer at the tasting room, or they can take home bottles or growlers of it. Visitors will get treated to live music throughout the day, as well as food from a local vendor (at a separate cost). Those who cannot make it out to the tasting room can find Polycot at local grocery stores after this weekend.

1st Annual Vegan Faire
12:00 pm – 6:00 pm, July 26
Healthy Junk, Anaheim
http://www.thehealthyjunk.com/

This Saturday, check out this FREE and all-ages all-day festival showcasing the full spectrum of healthy lifestyle goods & services with booths & workshops focusing on food, environment, clothing and fitness. Catch live music on the promenade all day too.

Bottle Share #14
1:00 pm – 5:00 pm, July 26
38 Degrees Ale House, Alhambra
http://www.facebook.com/events/731430773562628/

Brew your own beer? Got an interesting craft beer to share? Bring it to 38 Degrees’ monthly bottle share event, taking place this Saturday afternoon, and discover other great beers too. Free to attend, guests should bring approximately 40-50 ounce’s worth of beer. The restaurant has its own free parking lot.

Punk Rock Luau #3
1:00 pm – 9:00 pm, July 26
The World Famous Doll Hut, Anaheim
http://www.facebook.com/events/246539025548721/

Don your flip-flops and Hawaiian shirts to this daytime punk rock show at the World Famous Doll Hut this Saturday. The cover for this show costs $7, or $5 if you wear a Hawaiian shirt. No one under 21 may enter.

Taps Summer Luau
3:00 pm – 6:00 pm, July 26
Taps Fish House, Brea
http://www.tapsfishhouse.com/brea/html/specials.html

Enjoy five Polynesian craft cocktails, hula dancers, shave ice, and Polynesian food all for one price. Taps will even have a banana leaf-wrapped whole-roasted pig on site! Tickets to this tasting event costs $60. No one under 21 may attend.

Taps & Tapas: Craft Beer & Food Festival
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm, July 26
Whittier Community Center, Whittier
http://whittieruptown.org/events-in-uptown/taps-tapas-craft-beer-food-festival-coming-july-2014/

Come enjoy food from 18 restaurants and beer from 22 breweries at this local food & beer festival this Saturday evening in Whittier. General admission costs $45 at starts at 5pm, while VIP admission costs $60 and starts at 4pm.

The Crowd @ Alex’s Bar
9:00 pm – 2:00 am, July 26
Alex’s Bar, Long Beach
http://www.alexsbar.com/event/175509

Local punk bands will hit up Long Beach this Saturday night. Tickets to this show cost $8 presale or $10 at the door. No one under 21 may attend.

Swiss Fair
11:00 am – 7:00 pm, July 27
Swiss Park, Whittier
http://www.swisspark.la/

The Annual Swiss Fair returns to Swiss Park in Whittier this Sunday. Guests of all ages will find Swiss food, drinks, desserts, vendors, dance, music, cheese tastings, games, and more. Entry costs $5, which includes parking.

The Inland Empire got a taste of ska this past Saturday night, as GOGO13 headlined this tiny show in the back room of the Glass House. This low-cost all-ages show brought together a handful of Southern California ska bands for a night full of fun and skanking. As this show took place in the back room, this small space could only comfortably hold no more than a hundred people – going over that amount would make the space very cramped. Somehow, the spacing worked out, allowing for a pit area of a decent size. By the time I had arrived at the show, I had completely missed the first act, and the second act had reached their final song, so I made do with the situation. Apologies to Jared P for not arriving on time for his set.

I had arrived at the Glass House during Skadonna‘s set. Basically, this ska band from Orange County covers songs by Madonna, such as Like A Virgin. I heard them end with Like A Prayer, and I will admit that listening to a bouncy version of that song threw me for a loop. I later found out that this show marked their first ever live performance. Good on them for finally making it to a public stage and gaining lots of fans in the process.

Finally situated in place, I first got to experience Two Tone Boners in all their glory. This ska band from El Monte brought forth an original set comprised of ska with punk rock elements, meaning the skanking pit saw some heavier circle pit action here. Also notably, this band features a keytar player, known for riling up a crowd as much as a cow bell. If they wanted to cover a song, they could have, yet still stuck to their own original songs.

The second of the night’s cover bands played next, as Skapeche Mode entered the room with their glorious outfits. As the band’s name may imply, this ska band from Los Angeles covers Depeche Mode songs using their weapons of brass. They played a shortened set, omitting a few songs from their set list. However, they still got to the songs most recognized by the audience. These guys not only played their songs, but danced around with the audience as well, spreading their joy and energy around the room.

Now free from their tour with Reel Big Fish, The Maxies would mark the last of the night’s opening bands. For those unfamiliar with The Maxies, picture The Aquabats, but an M-rated version. Therefore, The Maxies come across as a highly-offensive and lewd band that will throw every bad word in existence at the audience. They do not use traditional ska instruments, but rely on a keyboardist to synthesize music to sound like ska music, similar to The Aquabats. As a result, The Maxies gain greater freedom to play with a heavier punk rock feel than just ska, lending to an intense circle pit that resonated all night.

The first of the night’s headliners, CodeName: Rocky, started with some tempo buildup to get the audience pumped up. These guys have garnered quite a following since their inception in the 1990’s, and it showed with the enthusiasm in the audience. Once the music started flowing, the crowd revved the pit even further. As one of the prominent first bands of the third wave ska movement in Orange County, CodeName: Rocky picked up lots of fans fast, alongside today’s mainstream bands like No Doubt and Reel Big Fish. Keep an eye out for a new album coming out this year, as well as any more shows they will play, because they deliver a show that no one can ever forget.

Prior to the start of the final act of the night, the stage crew dimmed the lights and enabled a fog machine to set the mood for GOGO13. The crowd certainly felt the mood, as the entire room got to dancing, swinging, and skanking once the music started. GOGO13 kept their set mellow and smooth throughout, not really going for anything super fast that may cause people to start slamming into things. GOGO13 does more than just play music – they entertain crowds with their antics and acting. They may even cover popular songs during their set! GOGO13 truly deserves to headline shows, and I believe they deserve a larger crowd.

Every band has a Facebook page, so give them a Like to check out more from them! With the exception of Skadonna, every band also has a Twitter page, so give them a Follow!

Returning for its fourth year running, the Ska Luau IV took over the House of Blues at Downtown Disney in Anaheim this past Monday night. This all-ages show combines two worlds, bringing the traditional family-friendly dances of a luau to a ska/punk rock show. In an effort to spread cultural awareness, prior to the start of any of the bands, all early arrivals could watch traditional Pacific Island dances, adding some culture to a night where ska kids and ska fashion bled out like a barbecue stain on a white shirt. Sadly for this show, the House of Blues did not allow anyone to take pictures with flash on, which reduced the overall quality of my photos. Nonetheless, I would like to say great job to everyone in Magnolia High School’s Polynesian Dance Troupe for putting on an excellent opening performance for the night.

With the island dancers done, the room shifted face, as most of the parents and children left, and all the ska kids filled the floor. Up first, CodeName: Rocky hit the stage to deliver their ska-punk set. It did not take long for the floor to erupt into a full-fledged pit, as the crowd simply forgot how to skank and resorted to a mindless circle pit. CodeName: Rocky played a solid uninterrupted 30-minute set, setting the stage for not only the bands to follow in the night, but for their upcoming show this Sunday night in Long Beach.

The greatest conundrum in music stepped forth next, as Save The Swim Team appeared for their final show together as a band. Why have I not seen these guys in the past? Representing a fusion of genres unlike no other, I can only appropriately call them a ska-reamo band. Who would think to play hopping ska music, then throw screams into it? Only Save The Swim Team has done so, and following this night, no one else does it. If you have not seen them live, search for their music on YouTube, and become a believer. Farewell Save The Swim Team – I barely knew you, yet you will have a lasting impression on my heart.

Disneyland visitors would get a kick out of the next band, which occasionally plays in Tomorrowland. Say hello to Suburban Legends, one of the most entertaining bands this side of Orange County. As one of today’s more influential ska bands, Suburban Legends has garnered quite a following across the nation with their style of performing. When these guys play, they do more than just play music – they put on a show. Suburban Legends incorporates music, dance, acrobatics, acting, and crowd participation to generate a show to remember for ages. With a set lasting 45 minutes, the crowd received 45 minutes of pure rallying and dancing, just enough to get our hearts pumping and amped for the final band. Make sure you catch these guys touring with Reel Big Fish starting TONIGHT and running across the nation.

Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome our ska hosts for the evening: Starpool! If you have not heard of Starpool, you have not lingered around Orange County enough. Just as much as Narcoleptic Youth represents OC hardcore punk, Starpool represents OC ska. After all, without Starpool, we would not have the awesomeness known as the Ska Luau. Starpool kicked off their set with a bang as confetti launchers covered the air with the little strips of paper raining down on the crowd for the entirety of the first song. From there, Starpool delivered hit after hit with the occasional crowd interaction, which included handing out glow sticks, inviting some fans to dance on stage, throwing out chocolate phalluses, and trombone player Tbone Willy diving onto the crowd in a giant inflatable ball. Words cannot describe what transpired at this Ska Luau – you would have to attend for yourself to believe it all!

The Ska Luau takes place roughly the same time of year every year, and has always taken place at the House of Blues Anaheim. Stay tuned for the 5th Ska Luau next year, as they could possibly add a second night if the fans demand it enough!

As the year winds down to a close, many punk rock shows start to crop up. As a common theme in punk rock time, better late than never. In some cases, going late makes for a more enjoyable experience, such as when The Adolescents and 7 Seconds headlined a show this past Saturday night at The Observatory in Santa Ana, Orange County. Although it appeared to not coincide with anything, this show ended up operating as a Christmas-themed show anyways, complete with an appearance from Santa Claus. Themes aside, punk rock fans clamored to this show to not only see the legendary Adolescents, but to catch a rare Southern California appearance by 7 Seconds.

The Vermin opened up the night with a set that lasted about 25 minutes. This old school band that started in the 80’s still can rock out like the best, as they caused a pit to initiate the moment they started playing, despite coming from out of town. Opening bands rarely can generate so much energy in a pit, so The Vermin definitely left their mark on all those who arrived at the venue way earlier than the headliners.

As oxymoronic as it sounds, Cerritos punk rock band Channel 3 (stylized CH3) started their set not too long after The Vermin ended their set. Punk rock does not exactly come out of Cerritos, so for a well-known punk band like CH3 to call Cerritos their hometown truly means something. In any case, CH3 walks the line between opener and headliner. They possess a large enough following that they can headline their own show, yet to go on second reminds us of how a normally headlining act like D.I. can go on second and still manage just fine. The crowd still went wild for CH3, especially when they started playing I’ve Got A Gun and a pit started on the side behind me. Oh, and Santa Claus decided to make a cameo towards the end of the set to throw shirts out to the crowd. Bonus: click here for a Christmas song by CH3.

The tension in the room expanded vastly as the anticipation for 7 Seconds reached peak levels. When a band requires an introduction from the show promoter, you automatically know to expect a fun time. I wondered why 7 Seconds did not officially headline the show, but with such great bands on the night’s lineup, the order did not mean as much, as all attendees could devote all of their remaining energy for the bands. With no real surprises or tricks up their sleeves, 7 Seconds delivered an exciting show to all the eager fans in attendance. They wasted little time transitioning between songs, opting to play songs into the start of the next song. Some of their more recognizable songs came towards the end, including Walk Together Rock Together, so those who remained in the concert hall the entire time could rock out with everyone else.

Playing to a crowd that had expended much of their energy on the previous band, The Adolescents held nothing back when they exploded onto the stage in the dark to screaming fans. While this sounds like a scene from a boy band concert, the men of The Adolescents beg to differ, as the crowd diving had started before the band even played a note. They started their set with No Way, which usually serves to drive the crowd into a frenzy, if they had not already gone into one. From there, the set consisted of plenty more popular songs, such as LA Girl, Creatures, Amoeba, and Kids Of The Black Hole. Many of the fans shouted for I Hate Children, but they will never play this song live for a handful of reasons. First off, no point exists to play that song at an all-ages show. Plus, they all have children of their own, compared to when they first made this song decades ago. No other surprises occurred during this set, save for the few people that could not handle the pit and had to climb out or get carried out.

With the holidays approaching and the year about to end, many punk rock shows have cropped up in Southern California. Check with your favorite local bands to see where they will perform next. Also stay tuned to this site every Monday for the week’s upcoming events.

Some big names in punk rock came to Southern California this past weekend, as The Misfits toured their way through Los Angeles and Orange County. As one of the most influential bands in punk rock, The Misfits always generate buzz wherever they roam, as thousands of fans will do whatever it takes to see them live. Although mainstream media does not pick them up, many of today’s popular rock bands credit The Misfits as an inspiration for starting a band. Along with some other great punk bands, The Misfits played two shows last weekend on consecutive nights, leaving the countless fans drained of energy yet full of pride. Although I made it to both shows, this post will cover just the Orange County show since I made it to that show on time.

The Attack started off the night strong with their 30-minute set. As the only band touring with The Misfits for the entire tour, for The Attack to play first boggles my mind, as a band at that level normally plays just prior to the headliner. Nevertheless, The Attack carried on, playing hardly like an opening band. They gave it everything, making it appear that some other band had gone on prior to them. With this much intensity starting the night, the pit would just get crazier by the minute.

The big punk names kept coming, as D.I. played next. Their set list has not changed from previous shows this year, so if you have seen D.I. at all this year, you know what songs to expect. Typical for D.I., vocalist Casey Royer talks about the most random things between songs. I did not even remember anything he said because he just went on about irrelevant subjects that did not relate to each other. Fans all stick around for the memorable performances and catchy songs, giving D.I. a strong fan base that will not dissipate any time soon.

Up next, The Dickies arrived on stage for their turn to play. Anyone who has seen The Dickies recently would recognize the set list as nearly identical to previous shows. This classic punk band makes use of various props to emphasize the points in some songs. Vocalist Leonard Graves Phillips utilizes these props, as well as dances in an eccentric and bouncy manner. The combination of his antics plus the exuberance of the rest of the band has kept The Dickies relevant all the way up to 2013 and beyond. Long live The Dickies.

After a dark lighting display paired with an eerie musical introduction, The Misfits calmly took their spots on stage to a sea of raging fans. Wasting no time with their 75-minute set, they dove right into their songs and played back-to-back with little to no downtime between songs. Silent moments did not last very long, as The Misfits transitioned to the next song at the end of each song. As the room had filled up by now, the pit had also filled up, turning into a giant glob of moving bodies. Following their completed set plus an encore, vocalist Jerry Only jumped down to the media row in front of the stage to sign autographs and take photos.

Miss out on The Misfits this past weekend? They continue to tour across the United States, and will embark on an international tour next year. Check their website for a full list of tour dates to see which show will swing by near you.

Slater’s 50/50 Lake Forest – Grand Opening
11:00 am, February 11
Slater’s 50/50 (formerly Hooters), Lake Forest
http://www.facebook.com/Slaters5050LakeForest

Slater’s 50/50 cuts the ribbon to its fifth installment TODAY at 11am in Lake Forest (formerly a Hooters building). The first 50 guests in line receive a card good for a free burger on the next visit!

2013 OC Music Awards Showcase Series Night 6
7:30 pm – 11:30 pm, February 12
Segerstrom Center for the Arts, Costa Mesa
http://www.facebook.com/events/166617693482626/

This free and all-ages show will feature some of the nominated musicians for the OC Music Awards. Each night features five different local artists performing and competing for the title of Best Live Band awarded at the OC Music Awards in March. This series of free shows occurs every Tuesday night all the way through the finals on February 26.

Downtown Los Angeles Art Walk (Second Thursdays)
6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, February 14
Downtown Los Angeles
http://downtownartwalk.org/

This free monthly event takes place over many blocks in Downtown Los Angeles. Many galleries will open late, and some parking lots will contain more art, vendors, food trucks, entertainment, and more. Unless you know business owners, free parking does not exist in Downtown LA, although some meters only operate until 8pm. First-time visitors should attend with someone who has gone here before.

San Diego Tet Festival
5:00 pm – 10:00 pm, February 15
11:00 am – 10:00 pm, February 16
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, February 17
Mira Mesa Community Park, San Diego
http://www.sdtet.com/

Celebrate the Lunar New Year at this festival all weekend at Mira Mesa Park in San Diego. Free to attend for all ages, this fest will feature many traditional music and dance performances, fashion shows, merchandise vendors, and plenty of food & drinks.

20th Annual Queen Mary ScotsFest
9:00 am – 6:00 pm, February 16-17
The Queen Mary, Long Beach
http://www.queenmary.com/scotsfest/

Exhibit and explore Scottish culture this weekend at the Queen Mary’s annual Scottish Festival. Open to all ages, this festival will allow guests to experience Scottish music, dancing, athletic competitions, food, apparel, merchandise, and more. Plenty of activities will keep guests of all ages occupied, such as a kids’ zone and petting zoo for little ones, and a darts tournament and whiskey tastings for adults. Saturday ticketholders also receive a discount for the ensuing Scottish music concert at night (see event below). Single-day tickets cost $18 for adults, while other ticket packages will vary in prices. Parking will get hectic, so I highly recommend taking the FREE Passport bus from downtown to here. As the majority of the fest takes place outdoors, I suggest applying sunscreen and dressing for outdoor weather.

31st Annual San Diego Chinese New Year Food & Cultural Fair
10:00 am – 5:00 pm, February 16-17
San Diego Chinese Center, Downtown San Diego
http://www.sdchinesecenter.org/

Free and open to all ages, this family-friendly event will include lion dance performances, acrobatics, martial arts demos, live music, drumming, dancing, and more. Over 50 booths will sell merchandise and food, while some will feature crafts for families.

114th Annual Golden Dragon Parade & Chinese New Year Festival
10:00 am – 9:00 pm, February 16-17
Chinatown, Los Angeles
http://www.chinatownla.com/calendar.php?eventId=417

Celebrate Chinese New Year in the heart of Chinatown! Free to attend for all ages, the parade takes place Saturday from 1-3pm, while festivities take place the entire time, which include crafts, live music, dancing, live DJ’s, food, drinks, a beer garden, and more. If possible, refrain from driving there, and opt to take public transportation instead, as traffic and parking will cause many problems for those with tight schedules.

Rock Yer Kilt Concert
6:00 pm – 12:00 am, February 16
The Queen Mary, Long Beach
http://queenmary.com/scotsfest/concert.php

Following ScotsFest on Saturday, The Queen Mary will host this music concert, featuring local Scottish, Gaelic, and Celtic bands. Guests that attended ScotsFest that day can receive $5 off admission to this concert.

General Fucking Principles, Wrong Beach, Last Of The Bad Men @ Alex’s Bar
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, February 16
Alex’s Bar, Long Beach
http://www.facebook.com/events/473033566089200/

Come enjoy some good ol’ punk rock this Saturday night at Alex’s Bar in Long Beach. Tickets to this 21 & up show cost only $7!

Cockney Rejects, Youth Brigade, Shattered Faith @ The Observatory
8:00 pm – 1:00 am, February 16
The Observatory, Santa Ana
http://www.observatoryoc.com/events/cockney-rejcts

Catch classic punk rock at The Observatory this Saturday night. Tickets to this all-ages show cost $18.

Valentines Heartbreaker Special
10:30 pm – 12:00 am, February 16
Pike Bar & Grill, Long Beach
http://www.facebook.com/events/156349694518981/

Come enjoy a FREE sexy after-Valentines burlesque show at the Pike Bar in Long Beach this Saturday night, brought to you by the Dirty Little Secrets. No one under age 21 may enter.

LA Zine Fest
11:00 am – 5:00 pm, February 17
Ukrainian Cultural Center, Los Angeles
http://lazinefest.com/

This free and all-ages expo will feature hundreds of local and/or independent authors and publishers sharing their magazines, comics, and other DIY material. Workshops and speakers will engage attendees with more material.