| SCREAMERS, POP!, ZIPPERS,
GARY & THE BLIND DATES
at Straita Head Sound, La Mesa,
March 25, 7-11 p.m.
They don't make 'am punch a clock in San Diego, but you know something's not quite right when the bands have to check their watches after every other song. They had to squeeze four bands into four hours for some reason, so I guess that's why. They could easily have skipped the first band (almost did, too), the totally pointless Gary & the Blind Dates. Where would you go if you got stuck on a blind date with Gary? Probably to a Frank Zappa or Tubes concert, because his group is a blatant imitation of them-on a much cheaper scale of course (only one video monitor-black & white).
I liked the Zippers, but then I have a certain admiration for people who can come up with well-crafted and energetically-performed pop (power or otherwise), and I also have a weakness for female bass players who can sing a Spector girl-group song with even less emotion than the original.
The Pop! are at least party misnamed. (Hint: it's not the "Pop" part.)
The Screamers you knew about already and now I do, too. They opened their set by proclaiming, "We'd like 'to thank the first groups for playing you music from the 1960s and 1970s, now we'll give you music of the 1980s," and they backed it up, with the singer playing adolescent lggy to the keyboard player's Bowie. The Screamers didn't make the 11:00 "curfew" so they got the plug pulled on 'em, but they kept playing anyway. San Diego liked the Screamers a lot.