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As The World Burns

Rollins Band and X on Tour This Summer: As the World Burns


By: Thomas Bell
Summer just got hotter! A tour titled As the World Burns will feature tons of legendary talent. If there's anything vital to say about the significance of a tour featuring Rollins Band and X, then seminal is the word to describe it. You want to check out this tour — both bands bring their legendary energy to every performance.

Lest you think this is a tour of “old guys who’ve been sitting on their arses,” the personnel of both bands have been and are busily involved in various music projects (The Knitters, Original Sinners) poetry, publishing (Rollins’ 2.13.61 publications), production with various artists and indie labels . Rollins’ 2.13.61 imprint is to underground rock publishing what City Lights was to the Beat Writers. John Doe has toured in the past year as a soloist and with The Knitters. His 2005 release, Forever Hasn’t Happened Yet featured such luminaries as Neko Case and Kristin Hersh as well as Blasters/X icon, Dave Alvin.

X and Henry Rollins with Black Flag and were among a handful of bands that sowed the seeds for the DIY, Indie Rock world that we now enjoy. Both bands were featured in the infamous Penelope Spheeris punk documentary, The Decline of Western Civilization (sadly out of print and not available on DVD – something to do with lawyers, one suspects).

In 1981 Black Flag signed a record contract with Unicorn Records (MCA). Unicorn refused to release their record, Damaged, on the grounds that it was “dangerous and vulgar.” Greg Ginn, founder of Black Flag responded by starting the label SST and releasing their record. As soon as the record hit the shelves lawsuits from MCA ensued for two years. Black Flag responded by spending those two years touring relentlessly, influencing kids all over the country to start bands. Incidentally, SST was also the label that released the first Sonic Youth record.

Were you to rent the DVD, X: The Unheard Music, you would see the members of X as first-rate musicians to a man/woman. Billy Zoom, perpetual charming smile, delivering his effortless, athletically agile, roaring guitars, DJ Bonebrake’s percussive virtuosity, Exene’s poetry (she has collaborated on spoken word projects with Lydia Lunch and Wanda Coleman), and John Doe teaching Exene to sing harmony singing Delta Blues. As Henry Rollins himself said, “One of the greatest sounds on earth is the sound of John and Exene singing together.” Frank Black (Pixies/Solo Artist) said, “X is in that special club of rock n roll entertainers that sounded a zillion times better than most of the bands before them and years later are still sounding a zillion times better than most of the bands after them. They pass the test of time with flying colors.”

If you want to hear something of the genuine (rock-punk!) article, from “the horse’s mouth” as it were, and not the five times removed, neutered and ripped-off stuff that no-talent hacks made (MTV) money from, this is a show for you:

Rollins Band and X: As the World Burns Tour Dates
07-27 - Cabazon, CA - Morongo Casino Resort
07-28 - San Francisco, CA - The Warfield
07-29 - Costa Mesa, CA - Orange County Fair
07-30 - Agoura Hills, CA - The Canyon
08-01 - San Diego, CA - 4th & B
08-02 - Las Vegas, NV - House of Blues
08-04 - Salt Lake City, UT - The Depot
08-05 - Denver, CO - Ogden Theatre
08-06 - Omaha, NE - Sokol Auditorium
08-07 - Sauget, IL - Pop's
08-09 - Minneapolis, MN - The Quest
08-10 - Milwaukee, WI - The Rave
08-11 - Cleveland, OH - House of Blues
08-12 - Cincinnati, OH - Bogart's
08-13 - Chicago, IL - House of Blues
08-15 - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club
08-16 - New York, NY - Nokia Theatre
08-17 - Sayreville, NJ - Starland Ballroom
08-18 - Philadelphia, PA - Electric Factory
08-19 - Boston, MA - Avalon
08-20 - Binghamton, NY - Magic City Music Hall
08-22 - Norfolk, VA - Norva Theatre
08-23 - Charlotte, NC - Tremont Music Hall
08-24 - Atlanta, GA - The Tabernacle
08-25 - Tampa, Fl - Jannus Landing
08-26 - Orlando, FL - Hard Rock Live
08-28 - Houston, TX - Meridian
08-29 - Austin, TX - Stubb's BBQ
08-30 - Dallas, TX - Gypsy Tea Room

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