How have I never seen this band before? Shame, shame, shame…
Well, let’s just say that this was an absolute blast. I’m reluctant to admit that I only knew a few of Jim Heath’s songs from his 30 years of making music, but had heard so many good things about the live show that I finally pulled the trigger on what must be his twentieth visit to town. Good thing I did, as the show sold out the day of, and boy was Olympic packed. Hot AF, as well.
By the time I rolled in (after first watching Boise State hand San Jose a beatdown a mile or so down the road) the opener had wrapped up and the crew were busily getting the stage set up and ready to go. Perfect timing, yet again! As I weaseled my way up front, the house music blared Jerry Lee Lewis (appropriate), and then a Subaru commercial – first time I can recall an ad during pre-show music (WTF Olympic?). Guess I should stop bitching and just go buy an Outback, already.
When Jim Heath (The Rev) and his band emerged with his red rhinestone jacket and Mississippi tie, I was already halfway won over. After the first song (the blistering and tone-setting “Marijuana”, during which dude behind me sat down on the floor and lit up a fatty) I was all in on this band. When that number was complete, Jim yelled out “What a great crowd, here’s to Saturday night!” (It was a Wednesday…).
During band introductions, bassist Jimbo Wallace was credited for being with Jim for over 31 years, making their relationship older than many of the people around me in the crowd. Their respect for one another and enjoyment of what they are doing was easy to see. The Rev is quite a showman and a quick as lightning guitar player – he even stood on Jimbo’s bass while he played the “Big Red Rocket of Love” solo. This may be relatively simple rockabilly, but oh man is it satisfying.
A man named Bloodshot Bill (from Toronto, I believe they said) was introduced and sang a few numbers, and although it was also quite good, it took Jim out of the forefront and I just wanted to get back to he and his guys as soon as possible.
In the end, they finished as strong as they started, and even got an epic (for Olympic on a Wednesday, anyway) mosh pit going during their “Ace of Spades” cover. I even saw a couple dudes kicked out for being jackasses. Good times! For those who like their music fast and loud, I highly recommend seeing this band the next chance you get – unless I really am the last one alive to have seen them, which is possible.
Setlist- I did the best I could, probably got about half of them.
Big Little Baby
Hate to See You Cry
Big Red Rocket of Love
Don’t Let Go of Me
Let Me Teach You How to Eat
Ace of Spades (Motorhead cover)
Spend a Night in the Box
Whole New Life
Spotify setlist link: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/4jIDOqn9k0Lyu5PSVW48qk?si=utxCLmZKSgu0pE_KhANtsg