Sunday, July 3, 2016

Flag & War On Women @ Orange Peel, Asheville, NC

Sunday night drive up to Asheville to see Flag.  I'm pretty excited.  I've seen Keith Morris go wild with the Circle Jerks twice, love his OFF! stuff, and after seeing a second rate Black Flag a couple of years ago here in Charlotte, I was hoping for some redemption.  Have also seen Dez perform with The Misfits.  Was looking forward to seeing 4 Black Flag members and Descendants' Stephen Egerton and see how the'd interpret some of the greatest punk/hardcore songs ever.

I left home early in an attempt to get to the, so far ever elusive, Bridges BBQ in Shelby.  Supposedly the best BBQ in North Carolina, the restaurant has never been opened whenever I've driven to Asheville this way.  Tonight was no different.  By the time I got there at 6.30pm the parking lot was empty and the sign on the door said they had run out of BBQ for the day.  Next time! Though probably not as luck would have it.  I did end up at Hana in downtown Asheville after scoring a parking spot on the main drag halfway between the restaurant and the Orange Peel.  Hana was great, a bit of sushi, a Singha and a yellow Thai curry.  Not the BBQ I craved but still a good meal.

I got to the Orange Peel just as War On Women were beginning.  This off-beat, angry, punk band had plenty of angst in their performance, and a great message to go with it.  Not sure of song titles, but the ranty song about the crap women put up with from douchebags was great.  And they new their crowd when they bagged out HB2 and the hope of a change in North Carolina government.

Flag came on to little fan fare, but were blistering through all Black Flag's best songs in no time. Obviously an older group of men, no longer have the energy to move like a Black Flag song does, that is except for Chuck Dukowski.  Man, he was having a blast.  All the songs sounded as ferocious as they should be.  I knew all but the Clocked In and the Circle Jerks' Don't Care, otherwise it was one anthem after the next.  Revenge opening the set was killer, and it never slowed down from there. Chuck pounding the bass before No More was spectacular. Loved hearing the drumbeat to start Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie, and then Keith took a break after Rise Above.  Dez took over on vocals for 5 songs ripping through Thirsty & Miserable and Six Pack (amongst others).  Keith then came back and finished the set with a highlight Nervous Breakdown as well as Louie Louie.  A two song encore saw Keith and Dez share the vocals before leaving stage.  Normally I'd complain about only a 1 hour set, but this was 24 amazing songs that left me and the crowd hoarse. Glad I made the drive.

Flag Setlist
Revenge / Fix Me / Police Story / Don't Care (Circle Jerks cover) / Depression / I've Had It / No Values / My War / No More / Gimmie Gimmie Gimmie / White Minority / Jealous Again / Wasted / Clocked In / Rise Above / American Waste / Spray Paint / Thirsty & Miserable / Padded Cell / Six Pack / Nervous Breakdown / Louie Louie (Richard Berry cover)
Encore: I've Heard It Before / Damaged I

The Crap Facts:
This is my 408th concert.
This is my 1st concert at The Orange Peel.
The Orange Peel is the 115th venue I've seen a concert in.
This is my 4th concert in Asheville.
This is my 53rd concert in North Carolina.
This is my 215th concert in the USA.
War On Women are the 478th band I've seen.
Flag are the 479th band I've seen.