No Love For Zero: Off-Night at The Gramercy

Finally, Kimock and his band graced the stage, and after about 10 minutes of tuning, the band started Anorexia. I have no problem with lengthy songs, as long as the music is interesting. Anorexia, however, would be the start of a parade of 15-minute tunes that left me…just bored. Kimock took forever to get to the point, and saxophone player Martin Fierro rarely even made a point. Fierro also showed off a dirty mouth, using the word “fuck” more often than Andrew Dice Clay. He often ranted in between songs, little of which I could understand.

Photo by Scarlet_Fyre

Many of the tunes Zero played that night were instrumentals, and the high points of the evening were when the lovely Donna Jean Godchaux came out to sing a few songs, such as Catalina. Donna looked and sounded great, and I’m happy to report she sang on-key.

Sadly her appearances were few and far between. Arnie Green did most of the singing, and he just wasn’t doin’ it for me. The drummer duo of Greg Anton and Kimock’s teenage son, John Morgan, was pretty good. Anton’s playing was ferocious, and he kept me throughly entertained with his effort. John Morgan Kimock kept up but didn’t add too much. It must be fun to learn on the job.

I enjoyed the second set a little more than the first, but I still found myself bored at points. Coming into the show, the two songs I most wanted to see were Cole’s Law and Tangled Hangers, so I was stoked to get both of them after the break. The problem was Kimock’s playing just seemed off. A few weeks ago I was blown away by his playing at the KVMW shows, but on this night his phrasings were uninteresting. He spent so much time trying to get his sound perfect in between songs that the night lost any flow.

Photo by Gammalyte

At about 11:30, which was only halfway through the second set, I left annoyed and disappointed by what I had witnessed. About 10 minutes later I got a text message from a friend that said “Franklin’s Tower.” I knew the band had been playing the legendary Grateful Dead number on this tour, so I wasn’t shocked. Then after 15 more minutes I got the “Worst Franklin’s ever” text message I had been expecting.

Zero played a set the next afternoon outside of Grand Central Station for free. Many people whose opinion I respect said that the band’s performance outdoors was much better than the previous evening. Sweet. I wish I had known, so I could have saved some money. That being said, I’m too big a fan of Kimock’s playing to let one horrible night ruin my opinion of the man and his band. I’ll catch him the next time, and hopefully the results will be different.

04-20-07 The Gramercy Theater, NYC NY

Set 1: Anorexia, Catalina, Pits of Thunder, Merle’s Boogie, Big Love

Set 2: Home on the Range, Cole’s Law, Tangled Hangers, Chance In A Million, Franklin’s Tower, Golden Road

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One Response

  1. Disagree with your review. I was at the show, too Friday night and attended the show on Saturday afternoon as well. I also purchased the FLAC files off livedownloads to revisit.

    I thought the first set was far more enjoyable than the second — Melvin Seals was ON FIRE during Anorexia, Merle’s Boogie and Catalina, and Arnie’s vocals sounded nice and throaty on Big Love. I actually prefer him at times over Judge Murphy. Home on the Range ended with a killer Knopfler-esque guitar jam by Kimock.

    The second set paled in comparison. Chance in a Million and Franklin’s Tower were not very inspired at all on Friday night, but they really rocked them out at Grand Central the next day.

    I think your problem is that you were sitting in the balcony seats rather than standing on the floor. I wouldve gotten bored up there, too.

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