Reviews: Lecherous Gaze and Hot Lunch at The Satellite, Bob Forrest’s Running With Monsters

Gotta love the free metal shows from Scion. Last week’s was right down the street from my house at The Satellite, and it was very much a Tee Pee records showcase with Lecherous Gaze (above) and Hot Lunch (below). Sweet!

First up were fuzzed-out blues rockers Hot Lunch, who kinda reminded me of a more sludgier-yet-more technical Hangmen. Does that make sense? Their guitarist rips–sometimes even dipping into the prog zone–and their drummer is a rock ‘n’ roll beast. (So why did am I posting a photo of the singer and bassist? Better light and positioning.) Turns out not only does the band crank out supremely heavy skate rock but they actually offer heavy-duty boards at their merch table well. Rad!

Lecherous Gaze have a leaner, more dangerous sound. The singer comes across like a mix of Blag Dahlia and Joey Ramone, pacing the stage like a caged animal but showing a sense of humor with muffled banter through his sweatshirt. While the band isn’t afraid to go off on space jams, they never stray far from the gutter or the gut. The short but raging set ended with an epic battle between the singer and a fan for the mic. Was it real? I don’t know but it was totally awesome and everyone left satisfied. I hope that Europe can handle their upcoming tour/invasion.

Before taking off I reintroduced myself to the evening’s DJ Don Nguyen. I interviewed the ultra gnarly skater for Giant Robot way back when, and since then he’s been playing bitchin’ records with LSDJS, launched the Listen To Volume 4 brand, and living the “Live Heavy, Travel Light” mantra to its fullest. A rad dude that I want to keep in touch with.

Above, left, is another shot from The Satellite but from when it was still called Spaceland back in 2010. That’s Bob Forrest with Thelonious Monster, and on the right is his autobiography that was released today. Holy crap is it great, and I don’t think you have to be a fan of his music to appreciate his story of growing up in a broken household (and how), finding his place in the early day of L.A. punk (Weirdos, X, Los Lobos, Fishbone, Chili Peppers…), and getting hooked on junk (all kinds). Any part of his life story is fascinating, from the tales of addiction to the recollections from the music scene, and to read about his transformation from untreatable addict to a drug counselor–the biggest hook for many will be his work on Celebrity Rehab–is truly inspiring.

While it is frustrating to learn about Bob’s numerous near misses with success due to his drug problems, especially as he sees his friends become mega stars, his voice never stoops to being petty or self-pitying. It’s his cool attitude and distanced perspective in the face of chaos that informs his songwriting and also makes his book a joy to read when it could easily be a cheesy tell-all, mean-spirited shit list, or a total bummer. He tells stories from his lowest points, like screwing up singing the National Anthem while high at a Clippers game, as calmly as he does high ones, such as discovering a musical partner like Josh Klinghoffer when re-entering music with The Bicycle Thief. It’s a wild ride and a page turner that is, most importantly, full of heart and truth.


Read an excerpt of Running with Monsters HERE.
And you can watch the first 10 minutes of the excellent documentary, Bob and the Monster, HERE.
Don’t forget Hot Lunch.
Or Lecherous Gaze.
And Don Freaking Nguyen.