I love you Reggie

By the

August 30, 2001

On Monday, August 27, Reggie and the Full Effect closed their “Mortgaging the Farm Tour” (their first ever!) with a show at the 930 Club. Hot Rod Circuit, Ultimate Fakebook and Koufax filled out the bill.

Koufax ambled on-stage and started the evening with selections from their two releases, a self-titled EP and the full length It Had to Do With Love. Several songs in, they noted that they had a rough day, because all of their stuff had been stolen and they had to play on borrowed instruments. This crappy luck had clearly rubbed them the wrong way. Towards the end of their set frontman Robert Suchan even started apologizing. “This isn’t the most rockin’ stuff,” he noted. “That’s why we go first.” But they sounded good nonetheless, with their admittedly old-fashioned (but not dated) rock stylings. Or, as Robert says: “It’s adult contemporary.”

Ultimate Fakebook, who rock unabashedly and without hesitation, took to the stage next. They played like men possessed, pausing between three-chord songs only enough to strike dramatic hair-metal poses and flash the devil horns to the hyped crowd.

Sometime during UFB the “it’s-the-last-night-of-our-tour” antics started to get out of hand. What had begun as a harmless game of “throw crap at the other bands” had escalated into a full-out session of “dude go run across the stage in a diaper.” Then, during Hot Rod Circuit, two guys duct-taped the bassist to his bass (and himself) as they continued the diaper modeling. During Reggie, the mayhem would become more like wanton destruction. But more on that later.

Hot Rod Circuit continued with what seemed to be the theme of the night—rocking bands with one member who is so strange and apparently insane that you can’t quit watching them. In HRC’s case, this band member is Casey Prestwood (lead guitar and vocals), a skinny ball of energy in black strectchpants with a penchant for jumping on the drumset.

Reggie and the Full Effect entered death-metal style, clad in black—different band members added personal touches, such as a leather vest and mullet, a red Michael Jackson Thriller vest, or a long, wavy wig with ski cap. The skill involved in their Poison-esque choreography (synchronized guitar waving, full-circle guitar licks) was matched only by the incredible intensity the band exuded.

Known for combining emo-pop tunes with synthesizer backgrounds, Reggie songs talk about problems such as “Your Boyfriend Hates Me,” or the eternal question, “Girl, Why’d You Run Away?” The group is comprised of members of Coalesce and The Get Up Kids, and random other people (note: none of them are named Reggie). Officially, however, they are shrouded in mystery. The made up story on their web site maintains that in June of 1988 a fire broke out in the mythical “White Chocolate Studios,” destroying all master tapes. Reggie, the label’s star, disappeared. Finally, the story goes, in February of 2000 Vagrant/Heroes and Villains Records received a box of unmarked tapes.

From that “box”, two albums have been released, one, greatest hits: ‘84-’87 (on which none of the tracks were recorded before 2000) and promotional copy (which isn’t in any way a promotional copy). On them, the band blends the songs mentioned above with completely random tracks, such as “Ode to Mannheim Steamroller,” a tribute to popular ambient, videogame-like Christmas music and “Boot to The Moon” (a great line-dancing song). The rest is more fake history. Why the band went to the trouble to make this up, we will never know.

Highlights of the show included a cameo by the lead singer from Coalesce dressed in a bear suit. Even though his vocals were not heard on the song “Something I’m Not,” his presence was still felt. The show closed with an encore of “Dwarf Invasion” as the band sported Viking gear and frontman James Dewees (also in Coalesce and The Get Up Kids) brandished a sword. He played a gong, he smashed a cymbal (much to the surprise of the drummer) and the band that originated as a joke left the fans at the 930 Club just wanting more.

Read More

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments