By Artie Capshaw
The first time we set foot in the Bullfinch in our new guise as Local Music Correspondent for this sorry periodical, history was being made. Mythic metamorphoses were underway. Thunder, lightning, crossfire hurricane—actually, just a big fight among bandmates, during what had already been announced as their last set ever. It was those Olympians, of course, legendary bar band of this mortal realm.
Most of the crowd was boogying too hard (disgusting habit) to notice the soap opera until it was too late. But we never dance (Gerry Fleck Syndrome), so our eyes were fixed on the stage during that long psychedelic jam when the guttural croons of singer Hazeus (ne Harold Zeller Jr.) gradually became more intelligible, and irritable. Others began to notice once Haze began snatching pages from the music stand (as you probably know, this is/was a band with a violin and a bassoon), crumpling them and stuffing them into his scraggly-bearded mouth.
Some who were there will swear Hazeus (pronounced like the Hispanic Jesus, as if you didn’t know) was screaming “I challenge!” or “Calderon!” (an Olympian song reference) or even “My chilblains! My chilblains!”—which makes sense when you realize old Harry’s an art school grad. But we have it on good authority that what the frothing frontman ad-libbed was much more obvious: “My children! My children!”
Best as we could piece it together afterwards, this paper-noshing nabob of negativism has just been told that his scheme to build a new band from the ashes of this one had just been foiled. Reason: Nobody could stand him. There was a new project in the offing, but he wasn’t destined to be in it. Since the harried Hazeus had no instrument to smash, no ball to take home, he grabbed the only prop in sight—the stack of songs he’d co-authored—and swallowed them whole. While the band played on. Seriously, this jam stopped for nothing except the closing-time foghorn.
The following afternoon at the Bullfinch there were already rumors of three new bands. The bar has already set aside dates for two of them, just a few weeks from now. And a scene is reborn.
We think we’re gonna like this gig.
Other notes from the netherworld: Tonight at the Finch, no Olympian-scaled fireworks expected at a bill better suited for Hamilton’s—popular rock from the Netflices, with high school emo epistolators Lost an Envelope and metal mockers Problem Playing opening… At Hamilton’s, a bill even better suited for Hamilton’s—reggae retreads Yellowthroat, mainstream “crazies” The Nuthatch and—what this?—downcast solo provocateur Grouse, spreading his wings into a new venue. Shout out “Don’t Play That Song” and see if he smiles… His Honor The Mayor is the new acoustic side project from members of The Free Company. They open at Hamilton’s Friday for The Interlopers and the as-advertised An Irishman and a Jew. …