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L.A. BEAT

Perkins Palace May Rise Again

July 26, 1987|JEFF SPURRIER and STEVE HOCHMAN

MILO GOES BACK TO COLLEGE: The Descendents, the veteran South Bay punk band that was recently picked by L.A. Beat as one of the ranking Southland groups, were scheduled to play their last local show Friday at Fender's--at least in their current form. Living out the title of their 1982 album "Milo Goes to College," lead singer Milo has left the group to attend graduate school in biochemistry. Remaining members Bill Stevenson, Carl Alvarez and Stephen Egerton will be joined by Dave Smalley, former lead singer with Dag Nasty, and will continue under the name All (the title of the recent Descendents album). The band will begin recording an LP soon, and expects to start playing around town in February.

CLUB NAME OF THE MONTH: The Surprising Taste of No-Wax Formica! (which also gets a mention for the most creative club phone messages in eons, changing weekly according to the club's theme). This new live music/dance club takes place on Fridays at the former hot spot of punk/new wave in Chinatown: the Hong Kong Cafe, 943 N. Broadway, (213) 281-6777.

CH-CH-CH-CH -CHANGES: Two esteemed local quartets have each lost a bassist/singer. Wednesday Week's Heidi Rodewald has decided that the touring life is not for her, and Long Ryder Tom Stevens has left to form his own band, Mercury & the Mummies. Each split has been termed friendly by spokesmen for the artists. No word yet on permanent replacements, but Radwaste's John Talley-Jones is filling in on Wednesday Week's current national tour.

SPANNING THE GLOBE: Fans at a recent Angry Samoans concert in Phoenix got a little out of hand when they were displeased with the performance of the opening band, L.A. speed-metal outfit Omen. According to Andy Van De Voorde, music editor of the Phoenix weekly New Times, a few Samoan fans, after failing to get a rise out of the Omen fans by holding lighters in the air in a mock metal salute, attempted to set Omen guitarist Kenny Powell's jeans on fire. They failed.

BUMPER CAR ROCK: You may not be able to boogie downtown if the Street Scene is off, but you can still pogo on the pier. The third annual Twilight Dance series at the Santa Monica Pier is now running every Thursday evening through Sept. 10. Sponsored by the City of Santa Monica and eight other civic and private groups, the free shows (which can accommodate up to 5,000 people) get going at 7:30 p.m. and feature everything from the all-star blues of the Bluesbusters to the polka madness of Rotondi to the Cajun contortions of Queen Ida. . . .

A new series of variety shows begins Friday at 8 p.m. at the Variety Arts Center (where else?) in the Ed Wynn Comedy Room. The premiere event features H.R. from Bad Brains doing a "spoken-word rap" about Rastafarianism and his recent experiences in jail, a screening of the X documentary "The Unheard Music," Phast Phreddie's new band Phast and Bulbous and Acoustic Whatsit (Debbie Patino and Geza X).

WE GET RESULTS: After reading L.A. Beat's list of the 15 best local bands in the July 5 Calendar, Hard Rock Cafe owner Peter Morton called two of the groups to see if they would donate guitars to the trendy restaurant's display. The lucky bands: Firehose (deemed the quintessential L.A. band by this column) and Redd Kross (a personal favorite of Hard Rock Cafe creative director Karen Parker). So, guitars from those aspiring bands soon will rest alongside axes once used John Lennon, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck and members of Los Lobos, the Bangles and Van Halen.

"I can't imagine my guitar up there with Eric Clapton," said Firehose guitarist Ed Crawford, adding that at first he thought it was someone playing a prank when Parker called him. "It's not so much an honor as a challenge to live up to a hope people seem to have in us."

How can a young local band afford to give away a valuable tool of its trade? Well, the Hard Rock Cafe gives the musicians a choice of a new guitar or having a monetary donation made to a favorite charity in their name. In these cases, each is taking a new guitar--a Carvin for Redd Kross' Robert Hacker and a Schecter for Crawford.

The Redd Kross guitar will be enshrined in a ceremony at the restaurant on Aug. 6. Firehose will wait until later this summer because Crawford wants to keep his guitar until Firehose has finished recording its second album.

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