It's been 16 years since the last 311 hits, but they've kept busy. At a time when their lovers have taken over Cure & # 39; s "Lovesong" crossing, the quintet has launched a Caribbean cruise with a biennial, licensed their name to several artisans, and created daggers. Last year, they launched their own line of CBD gels, drops, and animal-assisting products. They have also released six albums; all except one of their 2019 & # 39; s Voyager-Written on Billboard & # 39; s top ten. Elsewhere after the end of the "Amber" finale on the current rock radio, the band became an observer on the five sides where fans gathered. These are the people who hear "I can't handle all the wrong vendors, that's all you've got for you, to see?" as instructions for good health.
Their happy holiday – March 11, a.k.a. 3/11 – now the biggest landing event held in the most populous cities in tourist-friendly cities like Las Vegas and New Orleans. 311 fans (many of whom call themselves “the Excitables”) go up and down in their favorite “311” jerseys put on a number plate, with the band playing marathon sets; 2004 songs released in 68 songs over a period of four hours. This year, the band's 30th anniversary, took over the Park MGM in Las Vegas, playing 102 songs in three nights without any repetition. If you want more bang for your lab, you're in luck.
Over the years, fellow artist Nick Hexum ended 311 concerts by saying, "Live well and love your life." In 1997, he dropped the manuscript in the song “Jupiter,” emphasizing it as a law-like object to the excellent student prophets.
This year, to celebrate the band's 30th anniversary, 311 are taking over Park MGM in Las Vegas, playing 102 songs in three nights without a single recap.
“A warm desire came from what I will look for in my tombstone,” he told Hexum A.V. The club a few weeks before the date of 311 by 2020. "That's what I want people to take away if I can put it together in one sentence." If you're the kind of person who still has ideas for the most popular bands 20 years ago, the degree to which you agree with this statement probably reflects how you feel about 311 music today. There is a simple credibility to the phrases that feel bubbling with the ever-expanding gyre.
But it is a world tour that has made 311 one of the oldest active bands still formed by its original members. A few longtime ones (ZZ Top, U2, Radiohead, De La Soul) have enjoyed the acclaim and industry support that 311 never had or would like. They have never been nominated for a Grammy. They never come anywhere near Pazz & Jop; A.V. The club once called 311 "soulless quasi-funk" in review for another band. They will never be inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. There will be no well-regarded Netflix script. They do not change their set lists night after night, and they do not. They will not die, as I know them all well. So I went to Vegas to learn how to live.
The Cartha Theater is a 6,000 capacity triangle arranged so the long side turns the stage; the seats farther back appear to be at the top of the belt, making them feel much closer to the center of their size. Under normal circumstances, this can benefit us as a crowd. But today is March 11, 2020. Earlier tonight, the NBA has canceled the rest of its season following Rudy Gobert's excellent COVID-19 trial. A few seconds later, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announced they were infected. A few seconds later, the doors open, and 311 fans begin to enter the venue. My tickets are still low. General confession. The pit.
If anyone in the crowd is more concerned about their physical proximity than the crowd, they do not. Gen Xers and millennials enter the front of the stage, jumping from foot to foot in anticipation. A guy whose bald blonde hair line is in a race in the middle of his head tells a new-looking kid in his mid-20's what his hype 311 shows were like in the '90s. Her excitement is real, but it seems to manage expectations. Two nights from now, I will be seeing a bearded man with thick, shoulder-length hair in flowing dresses covered with dagga leaves: He is growing up with Jesus, someone explains. She gives me a nice, baked smile.
The crowd discusses how the band can arrange these three concerts. The most popular guess is that they will offer each night up to 10 years of 311 history: three decades, and three nights. Every single person who has come up with this idea immediately says they hope this is not the case. There is a consensus, at least among the people around me, that half the second night and every third night will be a drag. I have been willing to admit, but it is wonderful to hear the big fans of the band, all of whom have been paid at least $ 300 to be here, completely recording half of what they see. One boy says he hopes to play "Down" first, just to clear a path.
Instead, the set starts with “Freak Out,” a standard charger from 1992 & # 39; s Music. Immediately, members appear. Small pipes are released from their hiding places and packed, passed, and joyfully welcomed – the virus, I think, has been avoided. Around me, the crowd is surprised as Hexum and Doug “S.A.” Martinez's speeches break in before they meet and urge us to "Jump to the beat, then J-U-M-P." I suspect it's unwise to jump into a crowd full of people, but it's impossible to stand in a group of people who are constantly moved without bowing or looking like a sponge, so I jump.
When the band started saying "Good Tragedy," I took it as a sign that I had to paint the collective name I chose for The Strip and see what it taught me. I snatch three or four, jump on me, and take a few more. And I'm very stoned. When the band moves in, with the thought of "Let The Cards Fall," everyone passes around the playing cards, and when the entire structure is finally picked up by the first verse, everyone throws their cards into the air. Jacks, four, dunes are all around me, and I watch as they come out, smiling. It makes me happy to be here, in this peaceful working crowd, and to watch as Hexum chases after my daily pleasure. I wander back into the crowd, trying to catch my breath and give myself a little space, and I hear, as clear as the bell, the words everyone around me chants in a concert "Are You Right," not aloud, but apparently, the way you act in church – and it strikes me.
I’m a month or so shy on my 17th birthday, and mushroom tea treats me with kindness. I turn around to the balcony of the Provincial Palace Theater, a mushy wedding cake for the local Canal Street in New Orleans, as it seems to be bursting with crowds. We probably didn't get this concert: The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 were just a few weeks ago, undermining our right to do this, to have fun, to make a youth uniform. All around me, I hear the voices of people singing in a way that looks like a real 311 guitar accompaniment, Tim Mahoney, so that simple snapshot of the powerful intro and break in "Do You Right" is all human voices. I go back to make sure and, yes, Tim is there, playing for us. This is my 311st concert. The first was in the same room, on March 11, 2000. By the time I graduated from high school, I would have lost count of how many times I had seen it.
For middle school boys in Lafayette, Louisiana, in the mid-1990s, grief was the most important form of music financing. Based on how I've heard people talk about 311, I think they made Pantera look like R.E.M. I was in the sixth grade, ready to lose my baby's emotional fat, so I made it a point to follow up with them faster. Sometime in 1996, when I finally broke down to open a copy 311, a.k.a. Blue Blue, and dropping it on my CD player, I was surprised when Martinez's salvo opened on "Down": "Chill!" Chill?
I dealt with my disappointment with peer pressure to like something wrong. Then I got so into it. The communication I had with 311 felt like a cell phone. Hearing from them worked something for me that should at that moment be a quiet, self-conscious and private feeling that I could only access through their music. I have come to realize that this was for me in a way that nothing I had ever experienced before would do for me. 311 was the first group I ever felt like mine.
Nick Hexum knows this feeling. He says The Clash passed to Omaha when he was 14. It was 1984, age; Topper Headon and Mick Jones were already out of the band, which was a two-year tour Combat Rock. However, Hexum told me, “When Joe Strummer came out with his blond mohawk, I was weak in the knee. I was frustrated. I've been measuring this moment for so long. She came out and ripped at & # 39; London Calling, & # 39; s tears were streaming down my face. ”There were some great shows, but they were all great, mid-way shows like Hall & Oates and Men At Work. Underground was not coming to Omaha yet; seeing The Clash during his dating nadir was all it took for the life of Hexum.
Strummer's amazing taste – and, in 1984, his kind-of-edgier radio versions – would inform Hexum's approach to songwriting. Where 311 came from Music, they were already discovering how to marry the heavy energy of chunky Midwestern rock with funk rubber bands. The instant disparity of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Jane & # 39; s Addiction, and other punk-funk of the time was a particular inspiration for Mahoney, who was an equally devoted fan of sharp costumes such as Pat Metheny, fiery Dimebag Darrell, and Jimmy Ning's hairpin twist . Instead of being sadly influenced by the rap-metal riffs of 311 rap-metal bands he sometimes enlightened, Mahoney played rhythm guitar in the same way that George Porter of Meters played bass: golf above all else. Even in the worst of attacks, 311's music is inviting and open; the groove emphasis forces you to move your body along the rhythm, to get along with it. "Get your head out of this," Hexum says in "Appense Science," and it's impossible, no matter how you feel about the song. In the social experience he and Martinez have been playing live on guitar.
So it is a surprise that their best records are also very in-house. When it was released in 1997, Transistor he combined 21 songs into one CD, completing all the weddings. It is full of extended cocktails and starlit melodies full of rich weed smoke, and is considered a hit after the success of the Blue Album theater. An understanding of 311 reggae recordings often appears as though it is waterlogged and more influenced by police than "Police and Thieves," however Transistor uses their twin devotion to Jamaican music and old rock to make a big impact. They understood that gub-based gases could fill the phases of high-frequency noise Side of the Moon and find yourself far beyond the roots of the Midwestern band. Despite what the band and their fans claim to be, it's not a dub record, but it uses the terms of space, repetition, and subtraction to enter the gala in a few ways, if any, of the albums used by radio. They were shocked at what it had to offer, and to see their participation in the "Inner Light Spectrum," which builds on the focus of distant oxen and a round guitar, or "Running," which draws a charm from the Mahavishnu Orchestra and a solo from Jerry Garcia, bound as the vision of Earth from space. .
As a music critic, I don't see many, many mistakes in 311 music: faux slap, annoying slap-bass, eternal revenge peach of piccolo dough Chad Sexton insists on using it. Or with megafan, I didn't hear a line like "If I worked with pins it was a school, I had a Harvard degree" without a trace. But it's equally unfaithful to ignore the things 311 does and sometimes still works for me.
Since moving to Los Angeles in 2016, I will close Music either Grassroots every once in a while, just to see how it makes me feel. My hope is always to find that, the time and the vision, 311 have become so great in private. I'm always disappointed. But I'm intrigued by the fact that they set the musical priorities that guided my listening to this day: the importance of the groove, the importance of the empty space, the certainty that the music is physically like-minded, the easy flow of sound and the feel between those two poles. Some bands would give me all of that, and there is a lot I have. But 311 got there first.
As I made my way to the Park MGM on Thursday afternoon, people flocked up and down Las Vegas Boulevard, some with an eystick-length daiquiris in hand. To my knowledge, the two nights of 311 Day 2020 are open. A CVS clerk who puts my long Pacifico baby tells me he will kill the coronavirus: "Alcohol for the throat and not the hands."
I plant them on the ground floor where it becomes increasingly clear that the band will not have to deal with the epidemic or encourage us to make a small room in the basement. The closest to their intervention was Hexum thanking the crowd for being there despite everything except saying directly about the virus, which sounds beyond doubt. (When asked about its decision to move forward on 311 Day 2020, the party's management team said in a statement: "We rely on official and local government recommendations when deciding to continue the show, including a statement by the governor of Nevada, the mayor of Las Vegas, and the Nevada health commission on March 12.") You can't help but wonder if this random need to stay positive and love our lives does not include looking at the situation with a clear eye. .
Nothing the band does sounds good. "Sick Tight," a song that sounds exactly like the title, reminds me of how they let themselves get: "311, you want to be close to them / My name is Nick HEXUM," goes one heavy couplet, while Martinez announces aloud, "Houston, we have a problem, all this TV has made us dumb "on" Other Side Of Things, "a song written 10 years back Apollo 13 and 20 steps behind Self-mocking Death. Bob Marley's "Lively Up Yourself" cover does not encourage me to do so.
Which means nothing is outstanding. They extend the introduction to the jazz-funk tune of “8:16 a.m.” and release the song for a bit, and then take time to unwind and become an “Internal Light Spectrum.” “Use of Time,” a Transistor Pink Floyd's clowning stand "Wish You Were There" in the mindless dust, gives way to a five-minute drone, of all things, beginning to soften and darken and shoot with hot lines from Mahoney. Interviewing Hexum's daughter, Echo, aged 10, playing the piano while passing her father's guitar – and the full headache she receives from the crowd she replies – is a touching reminder of how deeply the fans and the band interact with each other. I have never felt alienated by the small but passionate part of me that still feels loyal to the band. I get the feeling that all the other people feel like they're old and committed to giving as long as possible.
Nathan Allen says 311 has changed his life, and he's so confident about it, I find it unbelievable. Like many older fans I meet, he was a devotee of Nirvana and Rage Against The Machine in the early 90s, but most of the time he spent with 311, many things began to change. “I was tired of being negligent,” she says. He shows me a 311 tattoo on his arm and makes the point that he's not the kind of guy who used to get a band tattoo on his body; 311 just had that kind of an influence on him. "I've begun to realize just how much toxins that external forces can bring to your life, and the more you surround yourself with positive energy, the more you give back, and the impact of snowball just."
The feeling of non-cooperation with existing cynicism has been part of the 311 issue from the beginning. 80 & # 39; s years ago, Hexum, who graduated from high school this morning, moved to LMAA, but was disappointed with the excessive sunset of the Sunset Strip. When 311 came together in 1990, he tells me, "We wanted to be outside, we loved reggae music, we wanted to be so happy in our lives." Beyond their 30-year separation, he never felt the need to speak up; The completely off-the-list list of people who appear in the 311 songs includes "nonsense people," a house strike that has collected huge payouts while the group is touring, and, most interestingly, homosexuals. The song "Apostolic Apostle," from From Cities, it takes workers who move "hides and piercings and self-destructive" leading children in the wrong direction, marked by "one emotion, one tempo, and no real feelings." The story is not anger, in other words, or darkness, but in building one's entire life within the "poison" Nathan Allen works to avoid — a claim of moral corruption and as destructive as unchanging beatings.
What Hexum said in our conversation stuck with me. I asked him why he thought that people give 311 followers so much subtitles for their eternal lives. He sighed, then said that it was always important to him that 311 was trusted above all else, and this sometimes made people uncomfortable. "I remember Rolling Stone or someone, when they reviewed the Blue Album, they called & # 39; Medied Directedility & # 39; & # 39; an anti-deep rant, & # 39; s like to say, if you are illegal, you have depth, but if you are optimistic, they are shallow. And I'm like, & # 39; t talking about my inner struggle to try to find the things I love about this life, and not just give up a voicemail. & # 39; ”
At about the end of the third night, the band plays a beautiful version of “1, 2, 3,” a slow-paced reggae-influenced act by George Harrison. When Ezekiel wrote it in 1994, he was responding in part to what he perceived to be a lack of time, and partly to the anxiety of feeling like you needed to be your own age. “It's OK to feel good,” said the best. "Okay nothing's wrong." Hexum sings it like a lullaby, as if he knows how the foundation of such feelings can be, as he begins to build his life.
This is the message behind 311 music, and that's why it remains so important to so many people. It is very difficult to remain optimistic in the future, and the struggle between the desire for life has been positive and the acknowledgment of the many ways in which it is essential to its survival. Trying to stay optimistic can feel emotionally dishonest: It suggests that you haven't understood all the facts. But in a world of infinite truths, it feels equally unreliable to discount many of the good things that are still there. "It has nothing to do with the lack of connection to who you are," says follower Saralyn Bliss. "It's not about trying to pretend it's all rain and cats. It's about real life."
Being granted permission to wholeheartedly accept the good things in your life, whatever you decide to be, is a powerful thing. But when Nathan Allen tells me that his refusal to live his life in fear prevented him from skipping out on Day 311 out of concern for the disease, I am suggesting that looking at the sun, or just for a few minutes, explodes. your ability to see the world clearly. However, the broader ethical consequences of being a viral advocate are, however, envious of Allen's general behavior – and Bliss & # 39 ;, and Hexum – in its context, Needless criticism should ruin your love stuff. Throughout my time in Las Vegas, and in the weeks and months afterwards, I feel like I, too, wander in the desert sunshine.
There's something a little funny about the 311, a silly anomaly of five young men from Omaha who still find the sounds of the Midwesterns after spending 30 years in California, pursuing and preaching some kind of island hope. Unlike any other band I can think of, the 311s seem to say more to their evening time than they did on the go. The music is slow, as many will admit, but its continued existence, its willingness to farm with hammy rap-rock in the name of uniting their people, and Hexum's ability to take off his professional costume to end the song-by-song. Idiotic like “Juan Bond,” it gives its fans a one-on-one, easy-to-release release. A person who is invisible to a nonprofit or legal company, of course, but also to a person who knows himself to live in a world of corruption, anger, and fear, and as a result must keep his head down. The stem is subject to these same substances, and, as a result, needs constant regeneration. In this way, being a follower of 311 and being at 311-is not very different from going to church. The fact that it seems, from an external perspective, entirely without being affected is what makes it so important to the people in it.
As I stumbled upon a casino program late Friday night, no one else looked tired. Next week, California and New York will move in on their own, and the world will begin contracting. These are the deteriorating times of free American life. I pass middle-aged women when comparing Atlanta Falcons jerseys, both with a 311 total. Flexible rear pieces and short knee shields. Guys in tank tops reveal greening tattoos. The girls are on metal beds with casino-carpet patterns. “My mom gave me a dollar, dropped me off at Park & Ride” from a bunch of downtown shooters. Ed Kowalczyk types. The last person I notice, before I leave the Park MGM in search of a slice of pizza and clean air and open spaces, is walking in front of me with a set of stone and consecrated. When Jesus grows up, he returns to the crowd.