One of my old favorites, Jon Spencer Blues Explosion aka JSBX, made their triumphant return to Los Angeles with a show at the El Rey Theatre in support of their new album, Meat and Bone. It’s amazing that after 21 years Jon Spencer, Judah Bauer and Russell Simins have stayed together and are still making great music. It had been a couple years since I had last seen JSBX and I was happy to see that they are still rocking the same as they did back in the 1990s when they first got going. It almost seems like Jon Spencer is immortal, like a rock-n-roll vampire, because the years seem to go by, but he still looks the same. It’s really remarkable and if I knew his secret potion, I’d get some too.
The crowd was a nice mix of 30 to 40 something hipsterbilly (just made that up). Most everyone was an obvious fan and presumably, like me, had seen JSBX before. That might explain why the crowd seemed somewhat catatonic at the beginning of the show – they had forgotten the amazingness of JSBX. Jon Spencer eventually got them out of their trance. It’s hard to stand still watching this trio since they simply exude energy, especially Mr. Spencer who, as Jeremiah noted, has “the energy of a thousand men.”
JSBX played quite a bit of material off their new album, but also sprinkled in some old favorites like “2Kindsa Love.” The whole show was just a whirlwind for me and when it was done, I thought it seemed short, but then realized JSBX blazed through an hour plus set with no breaks, just song after song and then followed it with an encore!
For all the rocking I did, still my favorite thing about the show was getting a JSBX apron at the merch booth, complete with a blood spattered JSBX logo on it of course!
Photos courtesy IceCreamMan.com
FYF Fest, my how you’ve grown. I remember you back in 2005 (your second year, I believe) when you were just a charmingly cobbled together free festival in Echo Park. I wandered up and down Sunset Boulevard to various venues, merrily clutching a 40 of Mickeys in a paper bag seeing bands like The Dillinger Four, Mojo Filters and Toys that Kill. Thankfully, we’ve both grown a bit since then.