Modern Fix

SECRET HATE / ZIGGENS – by mike bushman

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So what happens when a cool label hosts a night in San Diego? Well, depends on the label and the venue doesn’t it? In this case, the label was Skunk Records / Cornerstone R.A.S who delivered Secret Hate (very cool) and the Ziggens (very drunk). The error in the plan was hosting it at the Brick by Brick. The perfect ideal would be for me to praise and support every music venue in SD just to help the scene. But when the venue continually treats the clientele so poorly, its no wonder the crowds are thin. If you don’t believe me, just ask around (especially the bands who have played there).

We arrived as appreciative guests of Skunk Records / Cornerstone R.A.S. Normally the process at the Brick is to present your I.D. then step inside the door and pay the person behind the desk. I presented my I.D. and attempted to step through the door when this angry looking hulk of a dude (as doormen tend to rightfully be) jumped up and demanded, “7 bucks”. I explained we should be on the guest list and returned my I.D. with my business card for him to check. He tossed the business card back at me and quickly scanned the sheet. “You’re not on there, $7 bucks”. Not that this wasn’t worth $7 dollars, but with drinks and an editors wages (don’t let the slick veneer of Modern Fix fool ya, this isn’t the best paying job and comp tix and free CDs often ARE ones “wages”). After discussing with my friend, we decided he might have missed my name due to the fact that a lot of people use my pen name “Bushman” and not my full name. So we again tried to talk to the door guy. I quickly explained that it might be under just my last name. We apparently were interrupting his conversation with some girl so he looked at me and said, “Look, I’m busy right now. Come back in 5 or 10 minutes and I’ll look then.”

Fuck that.

So on our way back to the car we happened to meet up with some cool kids from a band called Losing Balance. They didn’t like the venue either. One of them went inside and got Kevin from Cornerstone who graciously walked us in, stopping by the door just long enough to point out my name smack dab in the middle of the guest list. Welcome to the Brick by Brick.

The crowd was rather thin as a band I didn’t get to see because of said door hassles was just finishing up. A few more people trickled in as the Ziggens began to set up. I have never seen the Ziggens live. I have heard their live CD and laughed. I watched their live set and laughed. But not always with them. They do have fun though. Playing with the level of seriousness of a gig in their garage for their friends. Covers of Judas Priests “Breaking the Law” and little bits of whatever between songs, plus a generally “We’re pretty drunk by the time the 3rd band plays” presence didn’t do much to raise the appreciation for their endeavors. Not a bad time, but seriously now…

The saving grace from the night of door guy abuse and sloppy beach punk came with Secret Hate. One of the Modern Fix writers praised their CD. I respect their live set. The only act I saw tonight that looked hungry to be on stage. A rocked out punk, a punked out rock, with energy and guitars and tempo and grit. I wasn’t familiar with their songs, but stayed through the whole set. I need to track down their CD as I would see them again and rock much harder with some song recognition.

Wasn’t the most happening Friday night, but I appreciate the effort and after 4 or 5 Jack-n-cokes even the Ziggens become a good time.