First/Last-Apache Fog

February 17, 2014

“A runaway freight train filled with bowling balls… side project by members of Pittsburgh’s The Long Knives.”

Check out the Pittsburgh indie rock band on Facebook, YouTube and SoundCloud. You can catch them play next month at Lava Lounge on March 13th. My thanks to William J. (Guitar/Vocals) and Nik R. (Bass) for taking the time to participate in this edition of First/Last.

  • The first album you ever bought?
  • William J.: “Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap” by AC/DC in 1977 when I was 6 years old.
  • Nik R.: I can’t remember the first cassette I bought, and publicly speculating about my early interests might get embarrassing. I ended up collecting several hundred really great albums on cassettes. It wasn’t until 1997 that I finally adopted what had become the new mainstream medium, the CD. My first CD purchase included “Filthy Lucre Live” by The Sex Pistols and “The Whitey Album” by Sonic Youth.
  • Your last album bought?
  • William: “The Argument” Grant Hart. Personally my vote for the Album of The Year in 2013!
  • Nik: The Black Angels’ “Indigo Meadow” was the last album I’ve added to my iThingy.
  • Favorite album of all time?
  • William: “You’re Living All Over Me” by Dinosaur Jr. “Bug” by Dinosaur Jr. runs a close second!
  • Nik: That’s too difficult of a question. My favorite albums, excluding non-rock genres, would be a toss-up between “Repeater” by Fugazi, “Surfer Rosa” by The Pixies, or Lungfish’s “Feral Hymns”. That said, I feel as though I have to apologize to Pavement, Sonic Youth, The Jesus Lizard, and Arcade Fire for not making today’s cut. Ask me again tomorrow.
  • Least favorite/most disappointing album?
  • William: Anything by Modest Mouse, I hate them with a passion. They are just a horribly cheap version of The Killers who I also don’t care for.
  • Nik: I don’t admit to buying disappointing albums.
  • First concert attended?
  • William: June 12, 1984, Ozzy Osbourne / Motley Crue / Waysted, Stanley Theater in Pittsburgh.
  • Nik: I’ve been to far more local “shows” than “concerts,” but the first big concert I went to was at Star Lake Amphitheater, in 1994, to see Roger Daltrey. I went back the next year for Lollapalooza and Nine Inch Nails.
  • Last concert?
  • William: September 23, 2013, Death In June, Ottobar, Baltimore. Terrific show by Douglas P.
  • Nik: I saw The Melvins last May at Mr. Smalls Theatre. Does that count? There was a period of years that I was on leave from appreciating and playing music. In 2008, I saw David Byrne (who put on an excellent show at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Music Hall) and The Verve at Madison Square Garden.
  • Favorite concert ever?
  • William: Hands down, the Mission of Burma reunion show when they played their first show in Boston in like 20 years on 1/18/2002 to play Club Avalon in Boston. Drove all the way from Pittsburgh to see it, was just an amazing show. The crowd was just electric, you could feel the crackle, and they threw down the most intense, aural orgasm of a set I have ever heard.
  • Nik: I prefer more intimate performances. My fondest memories were a series of 90s shows at the Monica VFW, featuring bands like Sub Rosa, Paris Green, Don Caballero, and Liquid Brick.
  • Least favorite concert?
  • William: The one I never saw when I drove all the way to New York on a suspended license to see Nikki Sudden play the Knitting Factory the day after my birthday on March 26th, 2006, as he was doing two shows there, and he died in the early morning hours of the 26th, so I ended up never getting to see him play. Broke my heart and still does to this day, one of my greatest influences and from all accounts, a super guy. I cried like a little baby when that happened, and it still stings me till this day.
  • Nik: No comment, but I heard that Richard Hell raised some unwelcome hell at Brillobox a few years back!
  • Favorite thoughts, experiences about Pittsburgh?
  • William: Good culinary scene, music scene that is not cohesive but making small strides, and a bit behind in the times from a socio-cultural perspective.
  • Nik: We all tend to rationalize our choices, so I give this dirty old livable city a “thumbs up,” despite the historic lack of prospects for the city’s musicians.
  • Thanks, fellas. I am hearing you WJ on the lack of cohesiveness in the music scene here and I attempt to do all my best to try to remedy that but I am not sure what the solution could be, if there even is any one at all, unfortunately.