Friday, April 26, 2002

Rock Shows of Note XI
Thanks to everyone who came out to the Anchormen show last night! It was a cold, rainy -- and later, snowy -- night, which has been the case every single time we've played at O'Brien's in Allston. I'm not sure how much money Allston-Brighton Free Radio raised at the benefit, but rest assured that fun was had by all. Jonny Pape of the band the Jupiter Project opened with a set of aggressive solo guitar rock. The Anchormen followed with a silly series of songs. We caught our stride midway through the set, I forgot the words to a couple of songs, and we had a lot of fun. People seemed to like us, and we even had a heckler. Woot!

Then the power plant exploded.

Alex and I had just stepped outside of the club after the Anchormen performance for a quick walk in the cool rain and fresh air when we were jolted by an enormous booming noise. Louder than a car accident and reminiscent of those deep boomer fireworks that thrill me so on July 4, the sound just screamed that something big had happened. Something bad. We turned around surprisingly slowly to scry the source of the sound just as a mild heatwave hit us. Then the fireballs started rising into the sky. There were several bursts of a mushroom cloud-like flame column, and then a steady pillar of fire visible in between the buildings on the O'Brien's side.

My first thought was, "We shouldn't have played Airborne Event." My second thought was, "Was that the chemical plant? Which way is the wind blowing?" Relieved that the wind was taking the smoke and whatever emissions existed away from O'Brien's, we made our way back into the club just as the Oxycontinentals were starting an apocalyptic set of sludgy rock. Chris, Emily, Alex, and I glued ourselves to the TV above the bar to see how fast the news would tell us what had happened. Frustrated by a segment about puppies and the weather report, we were pleased when the news ticker scrolled a mention of the explosion along the bottom of the screen. Not too comfortable with the mention of Genzyme, many people were concerned about chemical emissions and debated leaving the show for home.

Alex and I stuck around for much of the Oxycontinentals set before leaving. I met Scott's friend who used to play in Servotron and recently moved to Boston. Then Alex and I hitched a ride home with Mark and Karen. I dropped my jackets on the sidewalk as we were walking to the car and had to retrieve them, a wet huddled lump, before we headed home. The show wasn't the trainwreck I predicted yesterday, but it did have its explosive characteristics. Rock.

Here's another story about the explosion.

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