Thursday, October 13, 2011

A Yucky Night

It has been a week and it's been a week too long
There are several things that I've been doing wrong

One thing that I did not do wrong was drive up to DC in the rain to see Yuck at the Black Cat.

Oh, I would have liked to have had company, but despite plenty of friends who are Yuck fans, no one else was going.

There was no way I was missing them; despite being incredibly young and British, I think their take on '90s music is positively brilliant.

Naturally, I had built a food/drink stop into my itinerary before the show. Masa 14 offered an interesting concept (Mexican and Asian fusion) and location, location, location (same block).

Given the cuisine, I expected some nice tequila choices but I couldn't have anticipated a tequila menu with nearly 100 choices, priced from  $8 to $80.

Needless to say, with my budget I stayed on the lower end of that price range.

Even so, the Casa Noble had a nice pepperiness and a floral nose that made me wish I had 100 tequila choices in Richmond.

There was no way I was resisting pork belly steamed buns (with red Fresno chiles, pickled onions, hoison, pineapple and lime) and was rewarded with the lightest of buns surrounding lean belly and singing with flavor.

The Wagyu beef and pork meatballs with cotija cheese, scallions and smoked tomato yuzu sauce were so good I'd have ordered a second dish if I'd had time.

Noticing the guys next to me looking at one's phone, I asked what people did in bars before cell phones.

"Well, ten years ago they watched TV and before that, I have no idea," the one said.

Is it just me or is that tragic?

Tragedy turned to high excitement when I got to the Black Cat for the surprisingly not sold out show.

Taking a seat at the bar, I was pulled into conversation by the guys next to me, both of whom worked for Apple and were still in adjustment mode.

I had far fewer tequila choices here but the bartender was charming with waist-length hair ("Sometimes I put it in a bun") and bared his soul by telling me that he has a thing for "office women" types.

"I'm just a working stiff, so I love to watch office women walk home in their low-heeled black pumps," he confided.

The things people tell me.

Playing first was Porcelain Raft which is really one guy, Mauro Remiddi, who sings and plays guitar while playing loops and samples of other instruments resulting in a great big sound coming from one person.

Wait, I think I've seen that done in Richmond.

But I liked his voice and his melodies were beautiful, even if the crowd talked over them.

I made it to the third row when Yuck took the stage to immerse us in their mixtape of 20-year old influences (you say J. Mascis, I say Yo la Tengo).

No nearly as loud as it could have been (which was good considering how close I was), they said that tonight's show was the third to last of this tour.

"Then we're going to go home and write songs and make another album and come back and play for you," guitarist and singer Max said.

They played most of their self-titled debut, minus my favorite track "Sunday," but threw in some newer stuff like "Milkshake" and "Soothe Me."

I was satisfied that they alternated between their faster-tempo stuff and the mellower songs since they do both so well.

Except for the two very drunk girls dancing and bumping into me and the people around me, it was a superb evening of music from a band that will no doubt sell out next time they come through.

By then there will be dozens of hair-flipping drunk girls (like the brunette) dancing and just as many holding onto speakers (like the blond) so they don't fall down.

Better I didn't wait until I had a companion for these guys.

You see the time it takes for you
Is the time it takes for me
Oh, so don't agree


  1. K..

    well at least you made it back before the heavy rain...not a pleasant drive when the highways' dark & wet... misty/hazy doesn't help either...careful.


  2. You're right, it wasn't my favorite driving conditions. The fog especially made it difficult at times.

    But I had such a great time. I've been dying to hear Yuck live since I got the CD last February, so it was worth a little wet weather.At least it was warm wet, the best kind!

  3. K- Had I known you were on your own, I'd have been a willing passenger to YUCK. Next time maybe?