It's becoming old hat these days to get the old band back together. So many acts have done it with varying degrees of success in the last few years, but some of the more notable include the Pixies, Mission of Burma, and Gang of Four. One less-heralded reunion tour that made its way through the nation recently was the original lineup of LA punk legends X joined by the mid-90s version of the Rollins Band. The last show of the tour is tonight in Austin.
Rollins did a lot of interviews to hype the tour, but there wasn't much hype about X heading out with Billy Zoom back on guitar to join singer Exene Cervenka, singer-bassist John Doe and drummer DJ Bonebreak. I caught them at an early show at Avalon in Boston a few weeks back, really with the intention of seeing the Rollins Band, but I was bowled over by how kick-ass X sounded. Twenty years after their heyday, the band sounded terrific, ripping through some of their classics like Unheard Music, We're Desperate and Johnny Hit and Run Pauline. Not being as familiar as I should have been with much of their catalog, I was blown away at the sheer energy of the band.
It's unclear whether X plans to go back into the studio and record new material, but they certainly still click as a band. In the meantime, we've always got YouTube.
Here's a recent visit the band made to the kids show Pancake Mountain:
And here's a cool clip of an appearance the band made back in '83 on Late Night With David Letterman: