ROCKET FROM THE CRYPT + DAN SARTAIN @ THE ECHOPLEX
Photos and words by Leslie Kalohi
A personal dream came true last night when I finally got to see San Diego’s Rocket From the Crypt at the Echoplex. It’s no wonder their live shows were legendary. Complete with a brass section and matching outfits, fans were as fervent as ever, maybe even a few displaying RFTC tattoos from back in the day when the tats would grant them free admission to shows. The sold out crowd was all smiles, singing along with fists in the air. “We’re honored that this many people came out to check out Rocket From the Crypt, said an appreciative John “Speedo” Reis to the fans during a quick break between songs. “We don’t know what tomorrow holds. Let’s make tonight perfect!”
It’s amazing that the acclaimed Scream, Dracula, Scream! album is almost 20 years old now. But, Reis and the band didn’t show any signs of fatigue, playing extremely fast and loud, with songs blending into each other. Hearing “Middle” transition right into “Born in ‘69” was a personal highlight, as well as other album favorites like “Young Livers” and “On a Rope.”
Fans demanded an encore, and the night ended on a high note with “Dick on a Dog” and “Glazed.”
Dan Sartain opened the night with his brand of blues and rockabilly. From a cover of The Dead Milkmen’s “I Walk the Thinnest Line,” to opening and closing with the naughty “My Ding-a-Ling” made famous by Chuck Berry, tongue-in-cheek humor and an infectious joy permeated throughout his entire set.