No one is objective. So I won’t even try to pretend that I wasn’t biased going into this show to see one of my favorite bands. I’m pretty sure that I have seen Dirty Heads every time they have played in Dallas so far. This was #4 in the past year, if anyone is keeping count. As soon as they announced their tour in August, I made plans to be there. While the rest of the tour will be featuring Gym Class Heroes, this special night included opening support Outasight and Subrosa Union. I was able to interview all 3 bands before they played, and have included those clips here also.
The 1st act of the night was Austin based Subrosa Union (SU). The underrated alternative rock/reggae group was originally from El Paso, before relocating to the live music capitol of the world. They have shared with the stage with not only Dirty Heads, but also Fishbone, Slightly Stoopid, Passafire, and Rebelution. Their newest album, One Night Stand, was produced by Mike Cosgrove of Alien Ant Farm. Jared Watson, one of the singers of Dirty Heads, recommended them to us the last time I interviewed him in August, so I had high (no pun intended) expectations of the show.
Their allotted time on stage seemed to be over entirely too quickly. Their set list included the songs “Penny Arcade”, “Inside You”, “24/7 4:20 Everyday”, ” Sweet Mexicana”, “Hurry Up N Wait”, “Save Me”, and concluded with “Is this Love?”, a Bob Marley cover. Make no mistake, SU are a very versatile band, able to switch between reggae and rock seamlessly. It is no wonder they have been steadily building a name for themselves. When they first took the stage, SU appeared kinda quiet and subdued. Maybe they were nervous, perhaps they were stoned, or it could have been both. Regardless, they immediately took control of the room and made the stage their bitch. They were sweating by the time they were through. There wasn’t a very large audience gathered when they were playing, but they still earned respect. This unsigned band won’t stay that way for long, and added some new Dallas fans to their fold. Don’t be surprised when you hear more about them in the near future.
Outasight was out next, with his DJ and friend 6th Sense accompanying him. The Yonkers bred MC had a near perfect wave to surf on, thanks to the dope hip-hop that 6th was spinning. Having been influenced by many different artists like Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, and The Beatles, Andrew blends popular hip-hop and indie rock with the poignant sensibility of classic pop and soul music to create a fresh, new sound that is all his own. A friend of Gym Class Heroes, Richard Andrew just released his 1st official single, ” Tonight Is The Night“, which is in Pepsi’s “Who’s Next” campaign on the TV show The X-Factor.
Outasight is a talented artist, but had to struggle for success to start off this tour. The opening couple songs went fine. Midway through the 3rd or 4th, it sounded like 6th Sense had a minor hiccup with his equipment. It only temporarily threw Andrew off. However, another song or two later, he straight up stopped mid song due to forgetting the lyrics. The music also came to a halt, then suddenly he launched back to life, rapping the lyrics acapella. It was a great recovery, and a needed one. The set seemed really short, maybe only 5 songs. He danced throughout the performance, and so did several in the audience. He reminded of another opening act I saw in this same venue earlier this year, Wallpaper. Together with 6th, the duo make for a promising combo with potential.
Attending the opening kick off of a tour is thrilling enough, but is even more so when it is one of your favorite bands. Incense could be smelled throughout the entire auditorium as Dirty Heads prepared to start their night off right. It began with a brief intro, featuring a cover of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band playing in the background over the speakers. Bass player David Foral, and percussionists Jon Olazabal Matt Ochoa took their places first, then Jared Watson came running out, bouncing like a kid. They immediately launched into a brand new song, I’m not even sure what the name of it is yet. Jared started off rapping:
I’m gonna spell
man what the hell
grab the rail
I’m a wordsmith
you need a firm grip
to wrap your head around my shit”
Duddy B then appeared on stage, without his typical guitar maybe for the 1st time ever, and begins rhyming:
“Exactly where i wanna be
floating high on energy
drifting through the galaxy
death to those who challenge me
I am not the enemy
I am my on entity”
The new song probably isn’t completely finished, or perhaps will just be used as an intro, since it only lasted about 2 minutes, and still seems untitled. It sounds beachy, almost a kinda Caribbean vibe.
Their next song was “Neighborhood”, their 1st from Any Port In A Storm, and always a favorite live. Then they played “Taint”, before once again debuting more new songs! They ended up playing 2 brand new songs for the 1st time, and a couple newish songs. What I mean is that 2 of them haven’t been performed live before. They also covered “Paint It Black”, by the Rolling Stones and “We Will Rise”, both of which have been done live in the past year, but aren’t on a record. Likewise, they also did “Ring The Alarm”, the 1st song they ever wrote and recorded but wasn’t on Any Port In A Storm.
The 2nd new song had a chorus with both Duddy B and Jared referring to themselves as murderas, but not the Sublime with Rome song. Next up was another new song, “Burn By Myself”. It is an acoustic stoner ballad which shows off their softer side and ability to sing. Jared mentioned at one point that this was the 1st time they were trying some of these songs before a live audience. They continued with “Check The Level”, “Insomnia”, then “I Got No Time.” During this song, like they have before on previous tours, they randomly reached out to pick a lucky fan from the front row. It was the girl’s birthday, and everyone erupted as she rapped the lyrics flawlessly. Jared even told her afterwards that he liked her hand motions so much, he was gonna start to use them himself!
Dirty Heads are poised to have their best year ever. And even though the venue wasn’t sold out, the 500-600 strong crowd there were the truest of fans. This group has moved way past just the “reggae” genre, and their fan base are not entirely potheads. I was shocked to watch teens, 20 and 30 somethings, and surprisingly way more than you would expect over 40 year olds not only attending but enjoying their experience. Their new record, as of yet still untitled, is on schedule to be released in 2012. Make sure to check out our interviews and video:
1. New song
4. Murdera new
5 Ring the alarm
6 Check the level
7 Paint it black (rolling stones cover)
9 We will rise
10 Burn by myself
12 I got no time
13 Hip hop misfits
3 Lay IT down