The Dead Shall Rock The Earth


by Eric J Baker

Zombies are dead.

Well, of course they’re dead, but I speak in terms of pop culture trends. The second season of AMC’s TV series The Walking Dead is alleged to return in the fall, and Milla Jovovich threatens a fifth Resident Evil movie for 2012, proving that audiences in overseas markets will watch anything that’s filmed in English. So that’s something. Right?

Milla will eat your brains, too.

Maybe not. An IMDb scan of this summer’s wide-release movie titles doesn’t turn up a single case of the zed word. Hell, when George Romero, the guy who invented the modern zombie film, can’t get an undead flick into wide release, it’s time to shoot this genre in the head. His 2009 entry, Survival of the Dead, grossed a massive $54,000 in its opening weekend. That’s less than Charlie Sheen spends on hookers every Saturday.

Good God, I just made a Jay Leno joke. Is this what rock bottom feels like?

So, no zombies on the big screen this year. But weep not, lovers of the living dead… the rotters are taking their show on the road.

No, I don’t mean “Flesh Eaters: the Musical.” I’m talking about the summer concert season! People you thought couldn’t possibly still hold a guitar will be rocking it, geriatric style, in concert halls and arenas all across the U.S. in the months ahead. Among the desiccated luminaries performing will be Deep Purple, U2, Def Leppard, Journey, Yes, Styx, Motley Crue, Whitesnake, and Hall and Oates.

Whitesnake never had brains to eat. So they're safe.

Did you hear what I said? Oates! That guy with the bushy ‘stache standing next to Daryl Hall in all them (sort-of) rock videos back in the 80s… Apparently, he can still put asses in plastic seats. He’s been dead for at least five years, yet he (sort-of) rocks on, doesn’t he?

If any of these artists have a new album to promote, by all means, take the Prednisone and start rocking. Even if they don’t have new music and just want to rake in some cash, go for it. But I’m not sure how a dumb cock-rock ensemble like Whitesnake, which hasn’t gotten radio play over 20 years, is able to headline an amphitheatre tour.

One of four things has happened:

1. No bands have become popular since 1989.

2. Nobody under 40 can afford concert tickets.

3. I’m Dr. Who, time travelling back to high school to see if I can get laid this time, and I’m sticking around for the live music.*

4. The world really has been taken over by zombies, and we’re them (read your own social commentary into that. I was just wrapping up the zombie theme and moving on).

A few newer artists are making the rounds, including Maroon 5 and the Goo Goo Dolls. Taylor Swift too, if you don’t mind seeing her from the other end of a 100,000-seat football stadium, possibly with a different ZIP code.

"My, what a long guitar neck you have there, Eric."

The truly lucky among us will bear witness to the artistry of Nickelodeon ‘tween star Miranda Cosgrove, who, if you have any kind of a decent life, you’ve never heard of. She’s invisible to everyone over 11 but a near deity to those under. Case in point: A local shopping mall near me hosted an in-store appearance by Ms. Cosgrove last year, expecting about 300 people. 6000 showed up. Now she’s back in Jersey, taking her ear candy to a 12,000 seat amphitheatre next month. Behold the power of cheese!

Not gay. No, really. NOT gay. They're all yours.

If you’re reading this in the UK and laughing about what bad taste we Americans have, I’d advise you to log onto Live Nation’s ticket site and take a look at the shows you lot are spending your money on. Never mind, I’ve done it for you.  Your top selling attractions are Rihanna, Katy Perry, Ke$ha, and Bryan Adams.

I repeat: Bryan Adams is one of the top concert draws in the UK this summer. I don’t even have a joke for that.

Ah, well, it’s not too late to buy tix for the Duran Duran tour. Their new album, All You Need is Now (which I wrote about a few weeks ago), is fab in a Girls-on-Film: 2011 kind of way, which should be reason enough to make you stop reading this and go get it right now.

* Upon review, I appear to be making a joke about sleeping with underage girls. To this I say, “But she told me she was 18!”

Comments: 14

  • Alannah Murphy May 28, 201111:23 am

    Oh my god, Bryan Adams? We really have no taste any more. From the land who gave you Punk, we now give you shite like the X-Factor…enough said.
    *goes to look for the time machine to split from 2011*

  • Alannah Murphy May 28, 201111:26 am

    Oh and Whitesnake…omg, I remember them *shivers* (I wonder if they all still have all their hair? ha ha)

    • oldancestor May 28, 20117:35 pm

      I confess to actually having seen Whitesnake live in the late 80s. They have a song called “Guilty of Love” that goes “I’m guilty of love, guilty of love, guilty… in the first degree!”

      Some people are beyond the capacity for embarrassment, apparently.

      I think I’ve worked the kinks out of my time machine. Where to?

      • Alannah Murphy May 30, 20112:23 am

        1982 please, early 80’s had the best music, though the mullets will make me laugh and don’t mind Thatcher as Prime Minister, at least the woman had balls (unlike the wimps running our goverment now)

        Love those Whitesnake lyrics, they should have gone to jail for writing that hee hee.

      • oldancestor May 30, 20117:11 am

        I was thinking Knossos, Crete circa 2000 B.C.E., but London 1982 could work.

  • Paula Tohline Calhoun May 28, 201111:14 pm

    She doesn’t belong to the 80’s, but just as dead now (don’t think she was born in the 80’s) is Shania twain – She’s BACK! I never realized she was front – except occasionally I would have the curious feeling that I was a woman – usually while in the grocery store or on an elevator.

    But, if you ask me – and you haven’t, more’s the pity – there has not been a good dead (as opposed to undead) band since about 1972. That doesn’t make me old – it just makes me discriminating, and someone who still has brains, yet uneaten.

    • oldancestor May 29, 20117:55 am

      You strike me as a Crosby, Stills, and Nash/Simon and Garfunkel kind of person (and the occasional John Denver if you think no one is watching), so I can see ’72 being your cut-off.

      The Shania Twains of the world remind me that I live in the liberal northeast. She’s fine as far as bland country/pop crossover goes, but I don’t get the massive appeal. I guess people up here are too high-strung up here to relate to the laid-back vibe.

  • nrhatch May 29, 201110:17 am

    You’ve just hit the nail on the head (or, perhaps, into the coffin) as to why I don’t go to rock concerts any more.

    I refuse to pay good money to see the living dead perform on stage for audiences with too much time and money . . . and not enough taste (in music). :D

    • oldancestor May 29, 201112:57 pm

      I prefer club shows , but now that little E has started to join me in attending live music events, it’s a bit easier to manage the “family friendly” environment at the corporate locations. Family friendly being the euphemism for watered-down and over-priced.

    • nrhatch May 29, 20111:13 pm

      That is one of my favorite things about living down here. Almost every weekend there is an art show or festival with local bands performing ~ accoustic, jazz, rock, classical, classic rock.

      We’re literally “dancing in the streets” . . . and tiny tots, teens, and tweens, groove to the tunes and shake their booties with adults of all ages.

      Best of all . . . no opera or show tunes. ;)

      • oldancestor May 29, 20117:37 pm

        I’m looking for that vibe. Everything is go go go up here, as you know.

      • nrhatch May 29, 20117:53 pm

        I do, indeed.

        Being a “beach bum” has been on my bucket list for decades . . . it was worth the wait.

  • Hanson Anderson May 30, 20118:02 pm

    This is a wonderful article.
    However I think that it is guilty of the blasphemy of the most base hubris, as it did not bother to mention, the Sublime Orgasmic Song “Rhinestone Cowboy” by Glen Campbell.
    When I realized this I was instantly disgusted and it left me feeling naked, cold, violated and dirty.
    I think you PFC elites have been taking too many caviar baths. And I am at a loss of curse words.

    – A Disgruntled and Bitter Misanthrope

    • oldancestor May 31, 20114:25 am

      It’s not hubris. It’s that I am not worthy of saying the name Gle… Gle… the name that rhymes with “Ben Ramble.” Rest assured, I am sacrificing a goat at the Rhinestone altar ASAP.

      I think you feel naked, cold, violated, and dirty for reasons that have nothing to do with this aricle.

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