It was American Mothers’ Day this past weekend, which might explain why it was surprisingly far-from-sold-out when the recently reunited Vaselines played the first gig of their current U.S. tour – and their first Los Angeles gig ever – at L.A.’s El Rey on Sunday evening (May 10).
But it’s probably for the best that Angeleno mothers stayed home, since The Vaselines’ raunchy humor was still in full-thrust force at the El Rey after all these years. Along with their mum-inappropriate classic tunes like ‘Rory Ride Me Raw’ ‘You Think You’re A Man’ (actually a cover version), ‘Sex Sux’ ‘Monsterpussy’, and ‘Jesus Don’t Want Me For A Sunbeam’, their set included many other eyebrow-raising, blush-inducing moments, like when Frances McKee cheekily yet seemingly seriously suggested that the audience “feel free to masturbate” while the band tuned up between songs.
Encouragingly, despite the low attendance and lack of motherly love at the El Rey, the audience Sunday night skewed pretty twentysomething-young, no doubt due to Nirvana‘s admirable advocacy of The Vaselines back in the formative mid-’90s. And the new line-up’s inclusion of 1990s drummer Michael McGaughrin and Belle & Sebastian‘s Stevie Jackson (guitar) and Bob Kildea (bass) injected even more youthfulness into Eugene Kelly and Frances’s gleefully smut-peddingly pop ‘n’ roll.
Below are some clips of the Vaselines’ long-overdue L.A. debut. Surely their mums would be proud.