Hoover at the Black Cat
January 22, 2005, Washington DC
Before you read it, I guess you should know that I never actually made it to the show due to the blizzard. I did drive about half of the 4 hours, though.—TL
Reunions bring together the long lost and they encourage nostalgic pangs of happiness, awe, and occasional sadness. Some of the best and worst are family-related. The best are a pleasant surprise, the worst happen on Springer. But some of the most common reunions—or at least the biggest—are the rock tours where a troupe of geezers gather—often overweight and celebrating baldness like CSN, possibly wig-adorned like Kiss, or zombified like the Stones—as if they still believed in the musical product, not their annual gross. But because they’re basically confirmed deities, the rock gods can do it, and they seem to mingle with the most elite Himself.
We’re familiar with the draw of harmless nostalgia, and too many know the conniving kind where ulterior motives are suspect, where the musicians prey on the misty memories of those who don’t realize they’re missing something until they see the ad in the paper. The need to reminisce will draw families away from their homemade islands, and the same applies for the rock and roll resurrection, where the past’s pull can be as strong as the unseen connections that will bring us to each others’ wakes. Surely, the Rolling Stones are as cadaverous. Yes, the love for our friends is the same as for our rock groups.
Now, once in a great while, to what must be the Big Corps’ mortification, something amazing happens: a group reunites for not $100.00 plus 50% in Ticketmaster fees, but a mere ten dollars (still including 50% in Ticketmaster fees, the parasitic bastards), and the people still leave their islands. Here, however, listeners can bring their dignity too.
I never expected Hoover to tour again after almost 10 years, only one LP, and already far longer than their original run. I never thought I’d get a chance to see them even if they did patch things up. Finally, I never did make it to the Black Cat on Saturday night: I only made it halfway. I didn’t want to wreck in a foot of snow, but I would have driven in eight inches.
It’s almost as if God had other plans for me, as if to say that He prefers reunion shows as they usually are: muggy, crowded, somewhat—if not totally—disappointing. But despite my frustration, I did find a tiny glimmer of hope:
Hey man. Yes I remember you. We found out that about 100 people who purchased advance tickets couldn’t make the show. And there were still over 500 people there. I was talking to the other guys yesterday suggesting that we do something here in DC in the Spring. I don’t think we are done playing. We realized after the UK tour that we really enjoyed doing this band again, and are anxious to actually work on writing some new material. We are due for that. We are trying to get involved with MacRock in April. I think that is in Virginia. If anything else comes up I will keep you posted. Good to hear from you again. Again, sorry the weekend got screwed up.
Stay cool & rock top.
—Joseph P. McRedmond, Hoover