The Spits/Nobunny bill at The Earl was pretty much guaranteed to be one of the best nights of rock and roll in Atlanta this summer, and the show delivered mainly due to the headliner's ability to overcome a few early fuck-ups.
A couple of local groups opened the festivities. I missed The Customers' set, but I did get to see G.G. King's set of mostly new songs. For some reason, Greg's metal influences seemed more obvious than usual on this given night.
Nobunny and his current backup band then hit the stage, with the frontman wearing his trademark creepy as fuck and likely smelly from wear and tear mask. The country-influenced song that started off the set and the bizzare mish-mash of songs, including a Spinal Tap number and Gentleman Jesse's "I Don't Wanna Know (Where You've Been Tonight)", toward the end were definite highlights, but everything in between was lacking compared to past Nobunny stops in Atlanta. Don't get me wrong, it wasn't a bad set at all, but Nobunny and his crew definitely have better shows. Such is life on the road.
The Spits came roaring out with lights and smoke, a skull backdrop, and 1960's style wide neckties, but they faced some problems of their own. An unplugged guitar and a broken bass string or two early in the set would have derailed almost anyone else, but these guys persevered and ended up having probably the best and most enjoyable set I have seen all year. I was pumping my fist and singing along and so was the guy to my left (Joe from The Black Lips) and to my right (Mark from Die Slaughterhaus Records). Hell, Clay from G.G. King even crowd surfed for the first time in his life during all the excitement. The Spits said goodnight before the last five or six songs, but they kept coming at us with quick blasts of weirdo punk rock. I didn't want it to end, no matter how exausted the guys on stage looked. To reiterate, it was the best thing I've seen all year, including a certain show at 529.