ALL THE HYPERBOLE IN THE WORLD CAN’T DO JUSTICE TO ACCEPT’S LIVE SHOW
It took almost five hours on the highway in rain that wasn’t so much pouring as it was bulleting down to get from Boston to New York. And guess what? Totally worth it. Because it was all for Accept.
Vince has already covered King’s X, and no offense to him or our other intrepid site leader, but meh. I chose meeting up with friends I haven’t seen for awhile and gorging myself on Korean food and Shoju over watching King’s X. (I recommend the kimchi pancakes at Miss Korea over on Korean Way. They taste nothing like kimchi, which might be why I liked them.) I caught the last few songs, and while I enjoyed watching Doug Pinnick do his thing, the music was just too prog-y for me.
But Accept, oh my good godding fuck, Accept. Okay, they were always a band I thought I’d never see live. When they got back together, I was excited, but I mean, what’s Accept without Udo and his goblin screech? It was a restrained sort of excitement. But in the past year, hearing their new stuff, watching recent footage from shows, and actually getting to talk to Wolf (pshh, jealous?) psyched me up to the point where, as another well-known screecher Brian Johnson is wont to say, I “[couldn’t] stand still.”
I’ve only been to B.B. King’s one other time, and that was for Paganfest the year that Ensiferum, Eluveitie, and Tyr played. Man, that was a good show. I enjoy my half-naked Scandinavians.
But I digress.
Lo and behold, the venue is still the sweaty, overpriced cave in the bowels of Times Square. It was a pretty miserable atmosphere, but once the lame King’s X crowd cleared out (I kid, I kid. I’m sure you’re all very nice people but staying for them and leaving Accept is something I just can’t wrap my head around), they turned on the air conditioning and it was bliss.
Now, I don’t know what it is about the boy and me, but whenever we go to shows, we seem to attract the chatty weirdos. I guess we’re just that delightful. Before Accept even got on-stage, we met this nice gentleman who felt bad for making us move (apparently we were in some dude’s seat), and decided it was story-time. He told us tales of bringing some girl to Lemmy and snorting coke off Philthy Phil Taylor’s hand and how he’s gonna meet up with that same girl in Maine and head to London in Thanksgiving to see them. The rest of the night he kept clapping my boyfriend’s shoulders and screeching, “YEEEAAH!” I don’t remember your name sir, but thank you for adding to the wonder of the night.
Okay, I’ll get to the point now.
Accept were amazing. They performed a mix of old and new songs, and of the latter I really enjoyed, “Pandemic,” and have been listening to it ever since. I’m a sucker for epic choruses and harmonizing “Whoooas,” so of course it stood out to me. Unfortunately, the “Whooas,” were only present at the show, not on the record.
Mark Tornillo’s voice is also way more awesome live. My boyfriend hadn’t listened to anything new before the show, and had asked me if he sounded anything like Udo. And I was hesitant to say “yes.” Tornillo is more growly than raspy but live he’s fantastic. He hit all the Udo screeches and did the songs more than justice. I have a T.T. Quick album somewhere, but I never really paid it much attention because it wasn’t that amazing. (Like King’s X. I kid again! I swear it’s just too easy.) Now I love the guy and just might have to revisit it. “Princess of the Dawn” is kind of a silly song, and I get made fun of for loving it, and I didn’t think they’d play it… but they did! The songs I root for never get played at shows, so I was ecstatic — even more so when everyone in the audience roared when it started. Of course, “Restless and Wild” and “Balls to the Wall” also got their due reception. It was kind of surreal seeing and hearing a song I basically grew up with (Hoo-ray for European metal shows on my MTV. One good side of not growing up in America, I guess.) right there in front of me. I don’t think there’s a better song to fist-pump and chant along to.
The band themselves were just beyond words. I realize I’m raving, but I don’t care. I love this band, and I will use grandiose terms of praise when describing them. I don’t think I’ve ever seen another group of guys who looked just so happy to be up onstage performing. They were grinning and bouncing and head-banging, and were just so engaging. From where we were standing, though, guitarist Herman Frank looked like the spitting image of Bryan Cranston from Breaking Bad, and with Wolf’s polished Bruce Willis dome, the boy and I had a moment of grinning amusement picturing their doppelgangers onstage instead. But, of course, I wouldn’t have traded them for any movie/TV star lookalike.
It was a night of cheekiness (We sat in the seats without meeting the $10 per set minimum. Take that, Establishment! Hah!), stupidity (“They sound like they’re singing ‘We’re nice,’ instead of ‘Neon nights.’” “Oh man, song ruined.”), confusion (“Wait, he hung out with Lemmy? Motorhead Lemmy?”), and pure joy (two music dorks at an Accept concert). I’ve described Accept as being a combination of AC/DC and the Scorpions with a heavy dose of Motorhead, but they really are stand-alone. I had an excellent night, and if I could, I’d go see them again. Perhaps this time we’ll meet someone who partied with Bon Scott.