March 27, 2015

The Aristocrats: Secret Show: Live In Osaka

Power fusion rock trio The Aristocrats recorded a couple of shows during their world tour for a live DVD. All those shows ran into bad cases of Murphy's Law at some point and they had to settle for a composite that was released on the Culture Clash Live CD/DVD. During their tour the band played quite a few memorable shows without technology fucking up a some point, but those were not committed to tape. Or so they thought. One of the gigs that went without a hitch turned out it be preserved by an enterprising sound guy who caught the whole thing on two-track.

Recorded by Takashi Ogawa in Osaka, Japan at the Big Cat on August 20, 2014 Secret Show: Live In Osaka is the "official bootleg" of the tour. No edits, no clean-ups, all they had to do was master the whole thing and send it off to the pressing plant. Guthrie Govan (guitar), Bryan Beller (bass) and Marco Minnemann (drums) served up a set filled with exquisite interplay, improv and off-the wall in between songs banter. Honoring Zappa's adagium that humor belongs in music all three members indulge in witty song introductions and tongue-in-cheek musical tidbits. There's plenty of plastic pig and chicken in Get It Like That (including a snippet of Gloria Gaynor's I Will Survive) and Sweaty Knockers is a 101 in well-balanced contrasts and segues, alternating between hard rock and prog. Quite the opposite is the surprisingly gentle Flatlands, the only song in their repertoire that doesn't come with a shit load of notes. The Aristocrats have found a way to make expert musicianship fun to listen to, making each concert an event that can be appreciated by fusion geeks, jazz buffs and metal heads.

Since the sound guy plugged into the board, there's very little audience on this album. Listeners will need to fill in the whoops, laughter and applause themselves. On a side note: bootlegs are known for the mistakes in the track listing and the credits of Secret Show: Live In Osaka haven't escaped that faith, by not mentioning Furtive Jack but listing Louisville Stomp, which wasn't played that night, instead.

Secret Show: Live In Osaka is released on their own label BOING Records. Buy it from their webstore. The new studio album Tres Caballeros will be released in June.


  1. Introduction
  2. Furtive Jack
  3. Sweaty Knockers
  4. Ohhhh Noooo
  5. Get It Like That
  6. Culture Clash


  1. Flatlands
  2. Parental Advisory (pronounced "Blues Fuckers")
  3. Gaping Head Wound
  4. Twister (pronounced "Desert Tornado")
  5. Washed Passport (pronounced "Living The Dream")
  6. Erotic Cakes
photo: Tore Kersten
Live dates:
  • 07/06 Sacramento, CA @ Harlow's
  • 07/07 San Francisco, CA @ Slim's
  • 07/08 Santa Cruz, CA @ Don Quixote's
  • 07/10 Portland, OR @ Star Theater
  • 07/11 Seattle, WA @ Studio Seven
  • 07/12 Vancouver, BC @ Rickshaw Theatre
  • 07/14 Boise, ID @ Reef
  • 07/15 Salt Lake City, UT @ Club X
  • 07/17 Denver, CO @ Quixote's True Blue
  • 07/19 Omaha, NE @ Slowdown
  • 07/20 Des Moines, IA @ The Gaslamp
  • 07/21 St. Paul, MN @ The Amsterdam Bar And Hall
  • 07/23 Chicago, IL @ Reggie's
  • 07/24 Chicago, IL @ Reggie's
  • 07/25 Indianapolis, IN @ Birdy's
  • 07/26 Cincinnati, OH @ The Mad Frog
  • 07/28 Cleveland, OH @ Beachland Ballroom
  • 07/29 Pittsburgh, PA @ Hard Rock CafĂ©
  • 07/30 Columbus, OH @ Skully's
  • 07/31 Detroit, MI @ Token Lounge
  • 08/01 Toronto, ON @ Mod Club
  • 08/03 Ottawa, ON @ The Rainbow Bistro
  • 08/04 Montreal, QC @ TBD
  • 08/05 Woodstock, NY @ Bearsville Theater
  • 08/07 Boston, MA @ The Middle East
  • 08/08 New York City, NY @ Irving Plaza
  • 08/09 Philadelphia, PA @ North Star Bar
  • 08/10 Washington, DC @ Jammin' Java
  • 08/11 Raleigh, NC @ Pour House
  • 08/13 Charlotte, NC @ Tremont Music Hall
  • 08/14 Atlanta, GA @ TBD
  • 08/15 Nashville, TN @ The High Watt
  • 08/16 St. Louis, MO @ Old Rock House
  • 08/17 Kansas City, MO @ The Scene
  • 08/18 Tulsa, OK @ The Vanguard
  • 08/20 Houston, TX @ Fitzgerald's
  • 08/21 Austin, TX @ The Roost
  • 08/22 Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX @ The Sanctuary
  • 08/24 Albuquerque, NM @ Launchpad
  • 08/26 Phoenix, AZ Club Red
  • 08/27 Mexicali, Mexico @ Teatro De Estado
  • 08/28 San Diego, CA @ TBD
  • 08/29 Corona/Big Bear, CA @ TBD
  • 08/30 Los Angeles, CA @ King King


HCTF review of Culture Clash Live.

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