When punk rock’s finest independent label, Fat Wreck Chords was founded, they quickly gave birth to an American heritage: Lagwagon. They were a staple in many lives and an ritual to skateboarders everywhere. I’ve frequented many shows from the Fat roster, but somehow never had caught a Lagwagon show.
My life felt more complete when I heard they’d be playing at the Middle East Club.
The Lag were at the head of the table of this year’s Fat Tour 2012 with Dead To Me, The Flatliners, and Useless I.D. Between every band playing tight to a jittery crowd of 15-45 year-olds; it was quite a fat feast. By the time the main course arrived in front of everyone’s salivating eyes, the house went berzerk to opening songs, “Island of Shame” and “Violins.”
The band played with the same eager beaver excitement. Lead singer, Joey Cape, was accused by mammoth bass player, Chris Flippin of finishing the whole bottle of Jack Daniels. Joey confidentally replied, “You’re the partiers, I’m usually in bed by 9pm.” Bed time or not, the band powered through their set with no sign of needing a nap. Beginning their encore with a track of love and appreciation, “International You Day” was performed in honor of fellow Fat musician and all around good dude, Tony Sly. He had passed away all too suddenly this summer in his sleep. Cape and Sly had been performing as solo acts together for many years, so it was fitting to dedicate the song to him as an acoustic rendition.
It was an evening with a spread of emotions. The collection of tunes Middle East patrons received that night covered all the bases and you could see it on everyone’s face. Bliss. Thanks Lagwagon, for bringing a memorable meal to the table.