Thor & Zolar-X Live at The Knitting Factory in Los Angeles 8/223/06
People say rock is dead. And they may be right. But don’t tell that to Thor the Rock Warrior or Zolar-X. These two veteran theatrical rock ‘n’ roll acts are bringing back showmanship, costumery, and massive stages shows via a U.S. tour that finds them sharing the stage every night on a double bill that kick your ass to high heaven.
Thor is Canada’s greatest offering to the world. A bodybuilder turned heavy metal star turned B-movie star who has been bending steel, blowing up hot water bottles and battling monsters on stage since the ‘70s, Thor is touring behind his latest epic, the incredibly titled Devastation of Musculation on Smog Veil Records. His specialty is gladiator rock and if you can imagine Conan the Barbarian crossed with David Lee Roth playing pummeling dragon-metal, than you are halfway there.
Zolar-X are space aliens who descended on Earth to play sci-fi glam-punk. They were the house band at Rodney Bingenheimer’s English Disco club in the ‘70s before disappearing for a few decades, only to reemerge at the beckoning of former Dead Kennedy’s frontman Jello Biafra, who collected all their recordings onto a mind-bending CD called Timeless on his Alternative Tentacles label. Reunited to support the album the band has been on the road and in the studio blowing minds all over again.
When the G4’s TheFeed team heard that this union of superpowers was playing locally at the Knitting Factory here in sunny Los Angeles, right on Hollywood Blvd, we had to make the trek to witness such a spectacle. Needless to say we were not let down. Below are our thoughts, comments and ravings. Make sure to check out our awesome photo gallery and prepare to have your mind blown by ROCK!!!
I have seen Thor and Zolar-X many times and am a huge fan of both acts, so having the two of them on the same bill is like a dream lineup for me. And like most of my dreams, this one did not disappoint.
Thor put on a spectacular show as always, complete with creature battles, the bending of metal, swords and sorcery, glowing green lanterns, skulls, armor, and heavy metal so thick you could slice it with a sword (which Thor did, by the way). The mighty warrior was in top form vocally and showmanship-wise, and was even nice enough to pose with the Internets teams for a series of photos (see the gallery). And yes, we were very, very drunk.
Watch Thor in Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare:
Zolar-X was equally thrilling. Clad in space suits and adorned with antennas and points ears, they are truly from another galaxy. Their new materials stands up to the classics like “Jet Star 19,” “Rocket Roll,” and “I Pulled My Helmet Off (I'm Going to Love Her).” And damned if Ygarr ain’t the best guitarist this planet has ever seen. He makes shredders like Eddie Van Halen and Dave Navarro seem like little Earthling pussies.
Check out a preview of the documentary film about Zolar-X here:
Mainly though, this was a great excuse for all us Internets junkies to go out together, get stupid drunk and have a good time. And that mission, friends, gladiators, and aliens, was accomplished…and then some!
If there’s nothing else I do with my day, convincing one single TheFeed reader to check out Thor or Zolar X will complete me.
I’m talking to you, reader: Yes, you. If you’re reading this, you must watch the “Devastation of Musculation” video…but only if you think your puny little earthling mind can handle the metal. I have my doubts, honestly. I don’t think you’re man enough:
CLICK IT, BITCH!
“Why are there dirt skateboards in the video, Steve? Why is there a kid jumping into a lake?”
Because metal, bitch.
See this picture on the right? That’s me and Thor. We live by the sword and die by the edge of the blade. What do you do, pansy?
My friends have the power of the gods and will smite you with heavy, heavy rock.
We’ll Smite you good and proper like the old fashioned smitings we used to enjoy before you kids and your internet made everything gay.
(I’d tell you how great Zolar X is, but you wouldn’t believe me. So see for yourself:
The first thing I want to say is that there was a tripping Hawaiian dude who was trying to eat the speakers during Zolar-X. That’s how impressive they were. Being re-new to Los Angeles, this was my first time at The Knitting Factory, and it was a killer place, no nonsense with good sound and a hot bartender. How can that be wrong?
There was an opening act whose name I don’t remember that was essentially Dane Cook and a bunch of frat guys playing weird, mostly bad, Judas Priest-style stuff, without the panache of Rob Halford to push it along.
Thor is a genius. A genius with the best mask collection on Earth. And he bends steel on stage. And he makes you sing along with songs like “Devestation of Musculation.” As a matter of fact, I defy you to go and see Thor and not spend the next couple of days thinking, “We are warriors of the universe. We live by the sword, and die by the edge of the blade…”
Also, Thor is a nice guy. A really, really nice guy. How can you beat that?
Now, Zolar-X is an entirely other thing. Other, in fact, from anything else you will have ever seen in your life. This is old Los Angeles, live on stage. A Los Angeles where everything was a little crazy, and people partied all night and slept through their jobs during the day. One where people would just gather on The Strip to see what was going on, and float through the clubs there, doing whatever drugs were handy, and living a Los Angeles lifestyle that has long since died.
In short, they were wonderful.
Space punk is a niche genre, but Zolar-X rules it with an atomic fist. Ygarr, the guitarist/singer sounds like he is playing, like, five guitars at once. You won’t believe a sound that thick could come from the fingers of that gentle space elf. Also, the drummer is a dealer of thunder, blissed out and hammering some ridiculously cool pattern time to go along. The songs are killer, and this is one of the great surprise live bands I have ever seen in my life.
Also, there are no better people to hang with than TheFeed. Believe that. Come to LA, and we’ll show you.
I go to see a lot of live music and one of my biggest complaints is that it’s always so boring. Maybe it’s my own fault because of my inclination towards indie rock, but I was looking forward to being entertained for once and man, did that ever happen.
I have never ever been to a concert this fun in my entire life. Thor rocked so hard my spine hurt and I was so happy when he was able to slay that monster, because for awhile I was worried that we were all going to die. Thor is my hero. Hands down.
Zolar X was amazing too. There was a strange man who tried to eat the speaker, which only added the spacey atmosphere. And I will own the boots that man had. They were incredible.
Check out the photo gallery of this incredible event.