Tuesday night was the night The Reverend Horton Heat brought his Psycho Strung Out Fish Fry to Minneapolis. The Psycho-billy trio from Dallas, Texas is currently on an extensive North American Tour.
First up, straight out of Tijuana, were Los Kung Fu Monkeys. These guys have been around since 1997 and there isn’t a wall high enough to hold these guys back. With all of the uncontrolled energy of cruise missile, the bands unique blend of punk and ska was loud and in your face. Two songs in, and the mosh pit was in full effect.
Next up was Strung Out. Hailing from California’s Simi Valley, Strung out is more than just a punk band. While they were wildly energetic on stage (every band member except the drummer got airborne), this frantic energy belies their musical prowess. These guys are polished musicians, with a heavy metal yet technical style. Guitarist Jake Kiley is a savage on the six string, with fretwork that would make Eddie Van Halen jealous. It didn’t take long for the mosh pit to get back up and running after these guys hit the stage.
Also supporting The Rev on this leg of the tour is the late 80’s/early 90’s powerhouse Fishbone. The 8-piece band mounted the Main Room stage and immediately launched into a punk funk maelstrom, with sax wielding Angelo Moore at the center of the storm. These guys still have it, and were definitely hitting above their weight on this night. Original drummer Phillip “Fish” Fisher was banging his kit like a man possessed. “Freddie’s Dead” just flat out rocked. “Pray To The Junkiemaker”, a brass heavy funk fest had the crowd dancing. They also brought the Ska, with favorites like “Ma & Pa” and “Skankin’ To The Beat” allowing the packed house to get its bounce on. They totally left it all on the stage with their closer “Party At Ground Zero”. As the band came off the stage, The Reverend Horton Heat waited at the bottom of the stairs to shake each and every members hand.
After a short break to rearrange the stage, The Reverend Horton Heat, aka Jim Heath, accompanied by his longtime stand up bass player Jimbo Wallace and drummer Arjna Contreras, jumped right into “Big Sky”. The Reverend makes it look easy, kicked back with a huge smile, while just shredding the neck of his red hollow body Gretsch guitar. “Psychobilly Freakout early in the set got the Main room amped up, and the mosh pit was back in full force. Heath’s punk rock/surf style is definitely unique, and as he paced the stage he let the guitar do the talkin’. The band even through in a couple of covers to round out the night, most notably Moorhead’s “Ace of Spades” that drove the crowd wild. “Smell Of Gasoline” encore had the Main room crowd stompin’ and clappin’ to close out a wild night diverse music.