Pop-Break Live: Fishbone at The House of Independents in Asbury Park
Words by Kenny Pete | Photos by Jeff Crespi
Fishbone and Murphy’s Law each delivered a blistering performance to open Asbury Park’s brand new live music and performance venue The House of Independents on Tuesday night. Located in the center of Cookman Avenue in downtown Asbury Park, The House of Independents is going to to pick up the torch that was ripped from the hands of the Asbury Lanes & carry on a similar spirit in a completely fresh & unique way.
Upon walking into the venue, one would find themselves on the 2nd floor balcony of the venue with a bar & sitting area to the right overlooking the entire room with a tremendous view of the stage. Straight ahead is the staircase down to the floor of the room, wide open & plenty of space for everyone with a 500 standing room only capacity. I liken it akin to a slimmer version of the infamous TLA on South St. in Philadelphia, with a brand new sound & lighting system.
Murphy’s Law already had the crowd whipped into a frenzy when I arrived, with lead singer Jimmy Gestapo walking through the crowd, cordless mic in one hand, bottle of Jagermiester in the other toasting anyone who had a drink in their hand. At one point, Raven the saxophone player got in on the action & walked off stage & upstairs as Jimmy held the mic in the bell of his horn while he soloed his way all the way up to the balcony. They were clearly having the time of their lives christening the room in their signature hardcore fashion.
It’s an awesome statement for a venue called the House of Independents to make by inviting a band like Fishbone to be it’s inaugural show. To the uninitiated, Fishbone is a musical explosion / sonic assault that is very difficult to put into words. By weaving funk, ska, metal, punk & hip-hop with a dusting of cosmic experimental “War of the Worlds’ science fiction, Fishbone are in a musical category on to themselves. They delivered in a major way by digging up some songs they haven’t played live in years as well as playing some songs longtime fans know and love, while still making room for new material that stands up with classics they wrote many years ago. The crowd was allowed to get rowdy in-front of the stage & people were definitely “swimming at their own risk’ from crowd members to Fishbone soldier Flying Jay (Trombone & Vocals) who I caught out of the sky & made sure he landed safely at one point.
In interviews before this show, founding members Norwood Fisher (bass / vocals) & Angelo Moore (Lead Vocals / Saxophone / Theremin) both said they wanted to set the bar at a very high level for this show & understood they wanted to kick off this new venue with a bang. As a longtime fan, I can say they didn’t just set the bar very high, but they lit the torch for a new beginning in Asbury Park with the crowd chanting “Fishbone Is Red Hot.”
Setlist – Fishbone – 11/24/15 – House of Independents – Asbury Park NJ
Let Them Hoes Fight
Ma & Pa
Lyin’ Ass Bitch
I Wish I Had a Date
Pray To the Junkiemaker
They All Have Abandoned Their Hopes
Kung Fu Grip
Give It up
Bonin’ in the Boneyard
“Kung Fu Grip”