If you’ve ever been to Clemson, you know that every respectable institution in town pays homage in some way to the sacred hue which is Orange. The men’s room at TD’s is no exception. It was in this not so edgy establishment (the bar, not the bathroom) that Swank Sinatra, Los Meesfits, and Filth Fuxers gathered together in pursuit of punk.
At precisely 10:05 pm on Saturday night, some gristly feedback from Garrett Burke’s guitar announced the beginning the evening’s entertainment. After Burke and the rest of Filth Fuxers–including on shirtless drummer–had everyone’s attention, the majority of the regular Saturday crowd at TD’s was skeptical, at best. Near the end of their set, one apparently displeased patron stumbled on stage and made a fruitless attempt to tip over Burke’s microphone. He then proceeded to stumble toward the door with a bouncer not far behind.
Fortunately, there were plenty in attendance who relished the loud and noisy tunes provided. Filth Fuxers’ set started on the slow side, with “Coke In My Beard (Beer),” but “Stab Wound Kaboom” got the crowd feeling pretty raucous. Despite convincing displays of pent-up rage, it was pretty evident that the group’s aim was to entertain. (In addition to partial nudity, drummer Cole Monroe had a bold, gratuitous “FUX” written across his chest and wore a homemade mask of his own face.)
I think the lyrics of “In My Mustang” sum up the Filth Fuxers pretty well: “In my Mustang I go fast. / Do you want to take a ride in my Mustang?” Who’s to say if Filth Fuxers are the reckless rapscallions they portend to be? Maybe they’re just compensating for something. Either way, they’re having a good time.
Following the Filth Fuxers, Los Meesfits started playing around 10:45. In between sets I had been invited to help polish off a pitcher of beer, so I was refreshed and ready for some salsa. Even if I had understood any of the lyrics, I don’t think I could have appreciated Los Meesfits’ performance any more. They played their translated Misfits salsa-punk blend with seasoned skill and fresh enthusiasm. The trombone player provided a horn section that sounded much bigger than her small stature would suggest. Each instrument contributed to their unique salsa-punk blend that had everyone in the room breaking a sweat.
I thought Los Meesfits would be the most interesting group of the night, and they were a pretty hard act to follow. But then Swank Sinatra’s bassist was crucified and subsequently resurrected. By that point in the set, nobody on stage was wearing a shirt, and drummer Randy Garcia had removed his pants for good measure. During the middle of the their final song, Garcia (whose falsetto is surprisingly sweet for his husky frame) ran around the stage in his skivvies, incorporating anything and everything into a crazy drum solo. Meanwhile, guitarist Bob Place was busy nailing bass player Brandon Pittman to an imaginary cross, with the enthusiastic support of the crowd. The resurrection went smoothly as Garcia finished his solo back at the drum set, so Place and Pittman picked up their guitars to play the night’s final riffs.
Never having spent much time listening to any of the three acts beforehand, I was a little bit skeptical of the show, myself. The way each act built upon the intensity of the one before made for a progressively more awesome punk show as the night wore on. The only thing to put a damper on the night were the blue laws that prohibit the sale of alcohol on Sundays. Although everyone would have liked a bigger dose of any of the three bands, TD’s started ushering people out around midnight. I, for one, was sorry to see the night end.