Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Review: CHUCK MOSLEY Live @ Maggie Meyer's Irish Pub in Huntsville, AL 8/10/17

    Chuck Mosley is best-known as the singer of Faith No More during their early ascent, but has been involved in multiple projects over the years, most notably a stint with the Bad Brains and his own band Cement. When an auto accident during Cement's second album tour derailed his music career, Chuck took several years to recuperate and focus on his family. He formed a new band, VUA, but was, for the most part, a family man with a "real" job. Chuck made his comeback, however, with
2009's underrated/underpromoted album, Will Rap Over Hard Rock For Food. Since that time, he hasn't gone away. In the intervening years, he's put out Demos For Sale (demos and rarities from WROHRFF), released a couple of digital singles, guest-performed live with FNM a few times, celebrated the rerelease of their first album, We Care A Lot, played guitar in and sang for Douglas Esper's band Indoria, recorded with Primitive Race, and has been doing a "low key" tour throughout Europe and the US. That aforementioned tour, The Reintroduce Yourself Tour (the title a nod to FNM's second album, Introduce Yourself), is still under way. We were thrilled that Chuck and company were able to play the South East USA. And even more thrilled when they played in our neck of the woods, Maggie Meyer's Irish Pub in Huntsville, AL. What follows are just a few of my observations of that performance.

    Anyone who has known me for more than five minutes will tell you that those first two Faith No More albums were my gateway into music. Obviously, I will always give this man the benefit of the doubt, but what about the rest of the audience? Will they accept a stripped-down experience with no "We Care A Lot" to be heard? Turns out I was worrying about nothing. Chuck Mosley and his band are less like a touring act and more like tried and true veterans of whatever scene they happen to be playing that night. They're funny and they're down-to-earth. They hang out at the bar and chat and enjoy the opening acts. Chuck, in particular, looooooves the music. He even bobs his head to the house music playing through the speakers between sets, visibly entertained by tunes he's had to have heard a thousand times. He tells me "I love Black Flag". As for the sets themselves, Mr. Mosley seems impressed with all three bands that go on before him. From the jammy blues-powered Bookie Wilder through the Tennessee gonzo metal of Lummox to the subgenre-challenged PLOW, Chuck Mosley's respect and enthusiasm never wavers. He claps and comments to other audience members about songs he likes. Hell, at one point, he even takes out his phone and records a little bit of Flummox's set. Chuck Mosley is the ultimate fan.
Chuck checking out Flummox.

    Chuck's set is an acoustic-y effects-tinged affair with himself on guitar and Doug on conga. For this tour, the two have added Cris also on guitar and Randy on bass, substantially beefing up the proceedings. Chuck is alternately charming and mischievous, an elder statesman and a wily pup. The band runs through tunes from Faith No More, Cement, VUA, and Indoria, and turns them into their own new songs. Everything is re-imagined. And it works! Organic psychedelic shoegaze folk? Why not?! Us hardcore fans are impressed with how well Indoria's "Bella Donna" (an exclusive remix of which appears on the GAD! ZiNe Comp CD) flows into a stripped-down rendition of FNM's "Death March". Newcomers at the show are clearly blown away by the honest, creative power on display. Chuck and Douglas, old friends and frequent collaborators, joke around with each other and the audience between songs. The atmosphere is always casual, yet instantly soooo powerful. These guys are here to entertain, and have fun doing it. Confidence without the ego. They even do a great rendition of Faith No More's Patton-era song, "Take This Bottle". And Chuck and Doug sing the hell outta it. If these sounds were coming from some unknown kids with a stupid/clever band name, you'd still want their autograph. Do whatever you can to see these fellas live. I promise that you will not regret it. -Adam Harmless

Adam Harmless with Chuck!
GAD! writer Adam Jackson with Chuck!
My old "We Care A Lot" cassette.