To see or not to see The Misfits, This is the question some of my friends asked themselves. Many of my friends saw the importance of seeing them, but there were others who said things like, “I don’t see tribute bands.”I do what I want –and I wanted to see Misfits, so ‘ef’ it, I went.
The Masquerade, in Atlanta, was crowded and the top level “Heaven” was filled with fans ages 15 to 50. Many of these fans had dusted off their old leathers and were representing bands like Christian Death and The Damned.
The show started with Halloween music, while two grim reaper-ish looking guys came on stage to reveal Eric “the Goat” Arce’s drum kit and a huge iconic Misfits sign.Jerry Only, Dez Cadena (Black Flag) and “the Goat” (Murphy’s Law) came out to the stage and graced us with three decades of punk rock greatness. It was amazing to see one of the American-punk forefathers in action.
I love shooting these older bands because they are so happy to be there. They are happy to still be doing what they love. It is infectious. Jerry was having a blast and so was the crowd. He even thanked Atlanta for being so much fun. Fun is a great way to describe the whole show. I had heard so many opinions and blah-blah-blah about what the show would probably be like and the fact is, it was great.
The band played classic Misfits’ songs that spanned 30 years. They played my personal favorite, “Hollywood Babylon” as well as “Teenagers From Mars” and “American Psycho.” When they played “We Are 138” the mosh-pit became a blender set on mega-speed –full of fists and elbows. The band ended the show with “Die, Die My Darling” and threw some Black Flag songs into the mix like “Six-Pack” and “Rise Above.”
Immediately following this encore, Jerry went to the end of the stage and met the crowd and patiently signed whatever people shoved at him and he seemed so gracious. Jerry Only is a man big in stature, personality and reputation, but what I saw was a gentle giant with his heart in the right place.
So if you find yourself asking, “To see or not to see…”