Because the Music Matters!!!
The Editor's Desk
(re)View From The Past #2
the second in a retrospective series by Andrew C Schlett
originally published January 31, 2011
H-Town! Nice to see y’all again, as it always is, and nice also to have this
continuing opportunity to post my recollections and memories on the virtual pages of the
new Rivethead! I remember what it used to be like, way back in the old days, when I
would sit down every month with my old IBM Selectric III electric typewriter, a stack of
typing paper, and a box of white-out strips to bang out the latest installment of (re)View
From The Pit for the upcoming issue. The world has changed a lot since then, and so has
Rivethead. Back then, it was Lisa E’s paper and her staff, Wendy Jasper, Gene B.,
Exithor, myself, and others, we all wrote for her. It was Lisa who set the typeface, picked
out the cover design, laid out the pages, wrote at least one feature article per issue, took
the proofs to the printer, picked them up from the printer; hell, she probably even
delivered the damn things to the newsstands and nightclubs her own self. Once the hard
copy was out that was it. No further changes could be made. These days it’s much
different. Rivethead seems more alive now. It moves, it grows, it changes with each post,
download, and link left by our readers and visitors. This is cool! And certainly I’m not
taking anything away from Lisa E. Her hard work and dedication remain the driving
force behind Rivethead. It’s still her paper, but nowadays she may be described less as an
“editor” and more, perhaps, as a “ringleader”?
Not that statistics matter one bit to the average reader, but I have been checking
the hits chart for our page in recent weeks, and the new Facebook version of Rivethead
seems to be doing pretty well! I also understand that we are now on Twitter. This means
nada to me. I know nothing about Twitter; I have never used it for anything and only
know that it exists because I don’t live under a rock. But I do know that if it helps us to
better serve our readers, then it must be both dope, and fly. I will learn what it is, this
Twitter, and how to use it, very soon so that I too can follow the happenings of Rivethead
from wherever I am. Not much of a technology guy, me, in fact I often joke that it’s
always 1987 in Andyworld, but since it really is the 21st century by now I guess I’d better
get on board with the present.
Greetings, then, not only to readers who already know and love us, but also to
those who might be finding us over the Internet for the first time. Welcome to Houston,
stay awhile, browse around, see and hear what we got, and come back again later to
watch us stretch the ‘H-Town Sound’ around the globe!
Truly, that is what is going on here. It’s not only Rivethead, but also individual
fans who are using the newly available medias to spread the music, to put it out there and
make it accessible in ways that it never was accessible before. Maybe I’m wrong here.
Maybe it has always been out there, but in fact I’ve only been online since like last
November, so this is all still new to me and I am finding it extraordinary to behold. The
bands that I used to know, the songs that I used to love, videos that I never knew had
been shot are now posted on the net. I watch people that I used to party with, jam with,
even live with, on my computer screen these days, and that, I gotta tell you, is something
I never expected. The future is here, and I think it’s pretty remarkable.
A lot of the clips I found were shot at the Axiom 20th Anniversary Bash at
Fitzgerald’s, but many of them are genuine survivors, having been obviously recorded on
an old-school tape camcorder, live in the late 80s/early 90s, and digitally remastered for
presentation on You Tube. I applaud and thank the people who took the time and effort to
upload all this material, and I think back to all the shows I went to, back then, and how
there was usually somebody there, somewhere, along the wall or crouched behind a
speaker, with a video camera in one hand. Now I know why. Good job, y’all!
That is what inspired this posting. Just a couple of weeks ago I was cruising the
‘net for Agony Column songs, thinking that I might download “66 6-guns for Satan” and
use it as a ringtone for my cell phone. I never did quite get to the downloading part, but
while I was watching a set of Agony Column videos the next clip that came up in line
was “Scottish Hell” by deadhorse. Quite a nice surprise, I thought to myself. With great
pleasure did I watch the video for “Scottish Hell,” and then “Hank,” “Peaceful Death,”
“Rock Lobster,” and a few others before I was stopped in my tracks, literally, by the next
video in the series. Clocking in at one hour and nine minutes long, it was the entire
deadhorse show from the Liberty Lunch out in Austin that took place on July 7th, 1991.
The whole freakin’ show, right there on my computer for me to watch.
Dammit, I remember that show! Or at least, I remember when it happened. I was
supposed to go to that show and I was going to do my Pit column on it for the August ’91
Rivethead. Academy Black was the opening band. It’s even marked in my 1991 day
planner, but I was unable to attend because of scheduling conflicts at work. On the
surface that sounds lame and weak, but since I, one member of, and many of the
entourage of Academy Black, all worked together at the same place the manager of our
Domino’s simply could not let us all off at the same time. (And a quick shout-out to you,
William, if by any chance you happen to be reading!) Anyway, so yeah, Jeff, Marty, their
women, everybody else goes out to Austin to do this awesome show with deadhorse. Me,
I spent that weekend slinging pizzas and enjoying two quiet evenings at home alone with
Michelle. That was pretty nice, let me tell ya, having the apartment to ourselves, but for
all these years I always did regret not getting to see that concert.
And now I have. Still want that review, Lisa E? The sound quality of the video is
surprisingly good; the pictures are clear. I could write something up!
Before closing out here, I have to mention that it was with great sadness that I
learned, only after my last posting on this page, of the unfortunate and untimely passing
of my friend Joe Claytor some years back. Joe was a very unique and vibrant individual;
many people liked him, some did not, but nobody ever dismissed him. Joe was his own
force, and the world is a little more empty without him. I had thought to write this whole
column about Joe, but I know he would mockingly scoff at that. “Write about something
that matters,” he would say, “something that’s today.” And so I have. Next posting,
though, look for me to expose the real true story of my Academy Black interview piece
that appeared in the Sept/Oct 1990 Rivethead issue #23, and the role Joe played in
making it more, rather than less, successful.
Until next time Houston, and readers around the world, don’t forget to tip your
bartenders and waitresses, even more so if they too believe that ‘the metal (still) matters.’
Peace out y’all!!!