GO EASY ON ME: Confessions of a No Age Virgin

The view from the bathroom break line

Text/Photos by Aaron Richter

I’m 96-percent positive that I’m the last person in the world to see No Age live. The LA duo has been through New York, done the CMJ circuit and roughed it out at SXSW enough go-’rounds that most of my friends seem to need two hands to count the number of times they’ve seen the band live. And until tonight, my magic number was zero. So here’s a list of things I learned while seeing No Age for the first time:

High Places

  • More than half of No Age’s fans wear plaid shirts.
  • “Eraser” absolutely slays.
  • Canvas totebags are over.
  • Sloppy = better; super sloppy = super better; super fucking sloppy = even more betterer.
  • Kids like crowd surfing, and chicks like crowd surfing more than dudes–and are better at it too.
  • No Age’s stage banter rules (though Randy needs to speak louder at times and not mumble so much).
  • Someone who attended this show owns a shirt that says something to the extent of “Randy sucks; Dean’s alright.” The band thought that was awesome and I do too.
  • Some guy who looks like Ben Folds mixed with John Vanderslice is a No Age fan; find him on Facebook.
  • New York music writers own the left-side wall on the floor of the Bowery Ballroom.
  • Apparently, according to my better half, it’s interesting that musical trends (such as opener High Places‘ use of African percussion) tend to mirror fashion trends (such as this season’s use of tribal prints). People are sheep.
  • We’re all connected. Everything’s the same. It goes in a circle. Ansel Adams was talking about seeing and having the eye and Betty Edwards…when you’re drawing you have to be able to see the way artists do, that being a connecting thing in both worlds–like how you’re sitting in class and you realize for the first time that the shit you’re learning in math relates to the stuff you’re learning in English and history. It’s like a hundred years of solitude.
  • My girlfriend has some weird ideas.