Hank the crank visits London for the umpteenth time
Henry Rollins has been travelling all over the world since before he was a singer and stand up free jazz improvisational journalist (those last six words coming from his own description of what he does). He wrote in "Get In The Van" that after Black Flag's first tour of the UK, he was never so happy to be on a plane for the voyage home. The trip was filled with unfriendly encounters and the music they were living, not simply playing, didn't resonate with a lot of European audiences the initial time around.
He did make some important friends who gave him respect on that sojourn, among them Charlie Harper of the UK Subs, people more interested in great talent than bashing Americans for the sake of lame Yank jokes. So when Henry returns to England, all the memories must come flooding back about how young and hungry he was back then. The deluge continues in "Up For It", his first of three nights at the Astoria Theatre in the early days of the new millennium (May 2001).
Hank recalls old stories and very recent ones and they're all worth listening to. His hypothetical Presidential administration plans, how Canada is cool but many Canucks think guns are "baaad", scuba diving in Australia, how to deal with the Ku Klux Klan, layovers between flights, the trauma of high school wrestling and why he isn't too impressed with celebrity DJs.
Yes, the man gives value for the dollar. Buying one of his discs documenting a talking show or attending one in person is a pretty good investment for a reasonable price. I've watched his dvds so many times that when I got to finally see him in person a few years back, it was quite a rush being in the thick of all the emotion he channels during the heartfelt monologue. Considering he's usually on for three hours at a time, it's quite a workout for him and us as well.
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