Dez Cadena and The Penny Dreadfuls, The Ruiners, Thirsty Hooligans
Live in Toledo 3/17/12
Review and Pictures By: Michael Rys
Billed as the St Patty's Days Massacre Toledo was going to get the privilege of a debut, one of Detroit's biggest fun-time rock n roll bands and the legendary Dez Cadena ( Ex Black Flag, DC3 and current Misfits guitarist) all in one night. Stoked to see them all not to mention at Toledo's smallest ( coziest) venue Woodchucks.
First up was Toledo's own Thirsty Hooligans, made up from Carl and Kevin from The Dougouts,IO, Zimmerman Twins on guitar, and drums and Michael Graves Klug ( Ex -The Corevares ) on guitar and most of the lead vox. These cats true to the band name played Irish-Anglo standard drinking songs and even though they were played acoustically the boys upped the tempo and the attitude delivering some pretty fresh sounding set that I really liked. Now I know you can throw a rock and hit an Irish punk band these days but since I don't listen to alot of really popular stuff these days the genre's not been buried with me. The Thirsty Hooligans don't seem like they would fit in with any trendy tends though the songs were played honestly and although they were having fun with it there was an appreciation for the songs too. Really loved hearing Whiskey In The Jar played much closer to the original version than many others Ive heard. Way cool band especially impressed with their live debut.
Up next was a band we here in Toledo have seen alot of the last couple of years and that's great thing too because The Ruiners are just too much fun for Detroit too keep to themselves and not share. Rick ( vocals) and Nina (Vocals) were their usual dancing ,prancing, crazy beat jazzing selves. Keeping the audience involved, engaged and entertained. Justin ( guitar- vox) along with Jerri ( sitting in for Liz on bass) and Rob ( drums) chugged right along delivering the hits like Happy Birthday Bitch, More Tongue Less Lip, and Broken Halo among many others. One thing I truly enjoy about this band is the fun, oh and another is that you wont see a Ruiners audience shoe gazing or standing there arms folded. People are smiling if not dancing right along.The band is just as entertaining visually as they are musically truly one of the best live acts around. BTW--- expect not just one new record in the future but TWO !
I didn't know what to expect from Dez Cadena's band. I was not lucky enough to see him play with Black Flag and last I saw the Misfits he was not in the band yet. No denying his contributions to punk and rock n roll in general though so no matter what I knew it was gonna be an experience to remember. Dez's band called the Penny Dreadfuls could not have had much time to rehearse with The Misfits being in South America just a more week or so before the Detroit show Friday night and now the Toledo show on Saturday but you would not have known that at all with out digging into it. Dez and his band nailed every single song which covered a good portion of Dez's musical history and I suspect preferences too. Dez mixed in solo material he's been working on also and it all blended seamlessly. This guys is one underrated guitar player too, great riffs played effortlessly with raucous tone and the band like I said were dead on. It was obvious Dez was the conductor but it was loose and lots of fun too watch. Two favorite moments from this show was hearing Dez cover The Weirdos song Solitary Confinement.... Yes I think I was the only one actually singing along. The other was the old man pit ( yes I was included) . Imagine a bunch a somewhat paunchy,leather clad dudes ranging in age form 35- 50 all moooshing ... I say mooshing because that's like moshing except it moves very slow and everyone is very careful not too hurt anyone or God forbid spill beer. Funny stuff.... I have to say too, that even though most of Toledo got hammered early and were probably in bed by 6pm the light turnout did not faze Dez in the least, they even churned out an encore for us playing Iggy's classic I Wanna Be Your Dog. He was also very gracious with everyone who wanted something signed,pictures and even handled a request to hump his leg with a modicum a humor. Can't wait to hear his solo effort when its complete.