Our team was the first to arrive. We were served rich scrambled eggs and big bold chipotle doritos, washed down by a constant supply of complimentary Old Milwaukee. A van pulled up, clearly political. A group of radical neutralists poured forth from its wrecked-askew doorframe, spinning out in a ball of beard dust, drums, and double-bass. I grabbed my camera.
The band began to set up their instruments. We split up and mingled with the crowd. If we were to get to the deep heart of the shit, we would need to dig deep and dive deeper. It was quite a swanky affair, and some of my favourite Calgarians were in attendence. We had a lengthy discussion with Miss High Times 2008 Katie Price, the only Canadian to hold such a title.
BCASA almost literally kicked-off the spectacle, spewing out 90s pop-culture references like Beastie Boys from another era (and possibly another dimension). Staring at their mystic acronym, one most certainly demands what these series of cryptic symbols are representative of. We can tell you for certain that the ASA stands for Anarchist Society of America. This was their first time playing “acoustically,” placing my companion and I in the strange circumstance of having no preconceptions of what we were about to experience. In a closed-door interview after the show, the band told us that much of their usual repertoire could not exist in the acoustic realm. Shining gold grade-a BCASA earcandy like Street Fighter and Street Fighter 3 Alpha were simply impossible to perform. However, this did not stop them from opening our brain-stems to full bore. An orgiastic storm of endogenous morphine and other such neurotransmitters flushed our system with beaming rays of pure experience. After lengthy deliberation my companion and I decided that any attempt to describe the event would be a painful exercise in complete and utter futility. We can only hope that someone captured this rarefied moment of cosmic confluence using a modern filmograph device.
The next band climbed up on this freshly tinted blue-green deck, our makeshift stage for the duration of the evening. The fulcrum of this ragtag concoction of whiskey-cured peat-moss troubadours is named Bones Malones. Bones has a voice like a grated cookie monster who was fattened on eighty-year-old whiskey and broken wine glasses blackened with the ashes of a thousand hand-rolled clove cigarettes, only to be made into rilette for the finger-food rich to snack on like so many flamingoes imprisoned in the glass cages of so many department stores. Like the previous act, the band was making their debut acoustique; or rather, this is what we were made to believe. The reality was far more concussive: at some point in the choreography of fine-tuned orchestration known as unpacking gear, the band had lugged a small amplifier onto the fresh-stage and plugged it in to some unknown source. Magicians of Molewark could not be so crafty! These not-quite-unplugged tunes hit us with a fierce, possibly fiery force made all the more virile in juxtaposition with the surf-soaked acoustic such’n’such BCASA had just moments earlier spit forth upon the rapt crowdgoers. Bones, a man of apt intensity, pushed out powerful bellows that rushed over the crowd with a booze-like venomous intent to move–mind, body and soul. We had been promised trash-can, booze drenched, floor-stomping blues. We got more. Fuck the deck.
After the music was done, we leapt over a fence and disapparated. As we eventually regained constitution down the back alleywalk, we heard surprised shouts of consternate confusion rise out of the beer-fueled revelry that grew distant behind us, speeding away like so many California suns setting on the memory of two months spent digging clams and making love on the beach south of that cabin by Monterey. A long walk along the side of a highway, a short train ride, and then another 55-block walk across half of Calgary, we made it home alive. The walk was beneficial since a short sobriety break is often beneficial. It is our creative process, and thankfully Brucie lends us the occasional moment of clear-minded utility.
- Dr. S. A. Bjørn and Dr. Martin Holliston