The recent media attention is due to a certain degree of us now being hip to people who want to show off some contact with the original Bay area scene. The backlash against the punk explosion has faded and people are comfortable being nostalgic about that time period again.
The review is flattering, while not exactly breaking much new ground in terms of criticism - yes, someone once called us Fuelgazi (probably coined by Tim Yohannon or Martin Sprouse). I appreciate this comment: “…Fuel didn’t come across as obnoxious P.C. scolds, just earnest guys who wanted their music to do more than start pits at 924 Gilman Street. You can’t begrudge bands who take themselves seriously because they believe so fervently in the transformative power of music.”
Under “Current whereabouts” he says that - After Fuel, Allison moved back to his native Canada, where he pursued a career in law.
After Fuel, I moved back to Canada to finish my BA in philosophy at UofT. Four years later I was back in the Bay area. Although I spent a few years in an interdisciplinary PhD program about law and society at U.C. Berkeley, I never worked in the legal field. I dropped out of grad school, moved to Switzerland, got married and became a “web strategy consultant”. Hey, it was 1999. Anyone with a computer could become a business consultant. I rode the dotcom wave in one of Switzerland’s big web agencies at the time, Netvertis. And I’m still working in the web today.
Taken in the alley behind the Varsity Theater.
Bottom row (l to r): Mike Kirsch, Jim Allison, Wes (Angry Son manager/roadie/driver), Jeff Stofan, Gary Nix (RIP, Fuel roadie, Jim Allison’s best friend); Middle row (l to r): Aaron Arroyo, Toby Lawrence, Austin Stewart and ???; Top row (l to r): David Lowther, Mike Soper
Read more about Fuel and Angry Son.
As you can see from the flyer, this show took place in a HoJos, or a Howard Johnsons Motor Lodge. I recall that there were four conference rooms - Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Roosevelt - named after the presidents on nearby Mount Rushmore. This was definitely not a punk rock atmosphere. Our merchandise table was set up in the lobby between the entrances to these four rooms so a stream of Kiwanis or Rotary club types kept walking past.
See this list of shows that happened in Rapid City, which shows that Gilman St. bands like Crimpshrine had hit the road in ‘88, Neurosis and Plaid Retina in ‘89, and Filth, Fifteen, and Green Day (opening for Dead Silence and on the same bill and after Admiral) were out at the same time as us in ‘90.
They were the first band we met up with on our tour in the summer of 1990.
Angry Son photos that appear in the show entries were borrowed from Wes the manager’s Flickr account .
You have to sit through three minutes of the credits and then the cable guy, but then our set starts.
I do remember that our van got broken into and Aaron’s bag with clothes and cassettes was stolen, but they missed the envelope with all our cash in the door pocket. I think we scoured the neighbourhood and then spent a couple of hours filling out a report at a police station downtown.
The show was fun though, especially since the guys from Admiral were at the show, but didn’t get to play. You can see the singer Sean in a couple of shots. We had just finished playing a series of shows with Admiral and then stayed with them in Harrisburg. We then moved on to the East Coast with Jawbox, staying at Kim and Jay’s place in Silver Springs.
First song - “Take effect”
Second song - “The Name Is…”
Third song - “Some Gods”
Fourth song - “Not Up For Sale”
I used to have a copy of this show on VHS and am trying to track down a digital copy of the entire show.
This was from a show with Jawbox at D.C. Space in the summer of 1990.