New Years Eve 2000 was a night filled with a number of phenomenal shows geographically spread about the nation. I happened to be closest to Worcester, Massachusetts where The Disco Biscuits were serving up three absurd sets of Bisco madness at The Palladium. The night was hyped with high expectations due to past New Years performances by the band which have included the debut of Barber's Hot Air Balloon in 1998 and the crafty Japanimation Jam to Akira in 1999. Adding to the soaring potential surrounding this show was the debut of Brownstein's Chemical War Brigade on the previous night. While nothing as extravagant developed, the musical journey on New Years Eve was more than enough to make up for the lack of a "momentous event."
Nonetheless, the 2001 Dance Odyssey that The Disco Biscuits pulled off was momentous in itself, to say the least. The Jungle they had set up on stage was very appropriate for a number of reasons; the first being the simple fact that no one can look at a tropical plant without experiencing a sense of elation and the second reason I will mention later. As the Biscuits took the stage, the venue erupted. This explosion boosted the band into the musical exploration that would cover more musical space in five hours than many musicians could dream of in a life time.
On with the first set... Kamaole Sands started off with a happy-go-lucky groove that found its way into House Dog Party Favor before cashing in on the round trip ticket that brought us home to another Kamaole Sands. When Mindless Dribble began, the show turned a new leaf and the only word to describe this change is HUGE. This powerful rendition of Dribble stood on its own and was followed by an amazing rendition of Frog Legs, a song that had spent over a year in the vault. This version of Frog Legs included a humorous false countdown leading into a huge jam that peaked and crashed its way into the ending of Pink Floyd's Run Like Hell.
Heleakala Crater was another unexpected number in this ever-climaxing show. The Crickets that followed was utterly dancelicious and I almost threw out my back as the music forced me to dance fervently. The most beautiful and exploratory Magellan these ears have heard launched the band into a four-song run that would take us into the real millennium. The gorgeous jam, which included yet another false countdown, exploded into Munchkin Invasion. The dancethon found its way into Hope where we were treated, finally, to the real 2001 countdown which ended with yet another flawless segue back into Munchkin Invasion. As we all traded hugs and high-fives, we were pelted by Dunkin Donuts Munchkin Minnie’s - a creative advertising scheme if I’ve ever seen one. As all the New Years excitement toned down, I was able to give the band my undivided attention. I feel this is when the show really got heavy and the band reached a new level musically. The chorus of Munchkin Invasion was enormous and was accompanied by a watertight light show that made my head spin. The craziness came to a screaming halt and the set closer commenced. Helicopter was played furiously and the altered Happy New Years lyrics were the icing on the cake. As the band promised to return shortly for their last set, we all made a quick pit stop to the bathroom and the bar before reclaiming dancing real estate.
The last set was more about quality than quantity. By this point, I was so sore from dancing that all I was capable of was bobbing my head with a dropped jaw. I stood in awe as Brownstein executed the sweetest bass solo that ripped into a stunning Shem-Rah Boo. The next round trip musical excursion embarked from a raging Floes via an inverted, wild Little Betty Boop. The band returned to Floes with a vengeance to close the night. The audience stood screaming in awe for the band to return and give an encore which, disappointingly, never occurred due to an apparent coup d’etat by the venue management. Upon realization of the fact that the Biscuits had just graced us with a mind-blowing three set performance, I was able to justify the lack of an encore and spend the rest of the night drinking like a fish with an ear-to-ear grin.
At that time, I realized that I had just endured one of the most powerful musical experiences ever. As much as I would like it to be, New Years isn’t every day and I’ll be forced to wait a whole year to do it all over again. This does not mean that I won’t be out chasing live music acts as always. It does mean that I will have to focus my efforts on seeing The Disco Biscuits as many times as possible as they are guaranteed to blow the roof off whatever venue they enter.
To all, I wish a Happy 2001. Peace.
12/31/2000 The Palladium - Worcester, MA
1: Kamaole Sands > House Dog Party Favor1 > Kamaole Sands, Mindless Dribble, Frog Legs2 > Run Like Hell3
2: Haleakala Crater, Crickets, Magellan2 > Munchkin Invasion > Hope4 > Munchkin Invasion5 , Helicopters5
3: Shem-Rah Boo, Floes > Little Betty Boop6 > Floes
1 Completes 12/28 version. 2 With bogus countdown. Last 'Frog Legs' 10/27/99. 3 Completes 12/27 version. 4 Completes 12/29 version. With countdown. 5 With New Year's lyrics. 6 Inverted version.