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More musings on Punk Rock Bowling, Sunday edition

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Larry and His Flask perform sans amplification.
Photo: Bill Hughes

• Saturday’s wind is gone, replaced by a strange late-May chill. Looks like emergency hoodies might be outselling T-shirts at the merch stands.

• The Undertones, playing Las Vegas for the first time, dedicate a song to the folks watching from the Motel 6 balcony to the northeast of the festival grounds. They finally get a listless crowd moving with John Peel’s favorite song, “Teenage Kicks.”

• Undertones’ side note: Singer Paul McLoone—who’s filled in for original frontman Feargal Sharkey since 1999—was 11 years old when “Teenage Kicks” was released in October 1978.

• PRB’s Hardest Working Band award goes to Bend, Oregon’s Larry and His Flask. In addition to playing the main stage early on Sunday, the six-piece Appalachian-punk outfit performs impromptu mini-sets between the night’s main acts just inside the festival’s front entrance—completely without amplification. Tough to hear their instruments, but it sure is a lot of fun watching the guys jump around with them, especially the upright bassist.

• Just as The Bouncing Souls are thanking the PRB-organizing Stern brothers, one of them, Shawn Stern, appears onstage. The band wishes him a happy birthday, but doesn’t sing it. More punk not to, right? A rousing late-set performance of “True Believers” is a far better present, anyway.

Descendents frontman Milo Aukerman

Descendents frontman Milo Aukerman

• Covered by the Gimme Gimmes (dressed in powder-blue tuxedos): Elton John’s “Rocket Man,” Stan Jones’ “Ghost Riders in the Sky,” Paul Simon’s “Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard,” Styx’s “Come Sail Away,” John Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” “Tomorrow” from Annie, Blondie’s “Heart of Glass,” “Over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz and Boyz II Men’s “End of the Road.”

• “You know, we’re normally the best band [playing], but the Descendents are here.” –Me First and the Gimme Gimmes’ frontman Spike Slawson (Update: Word is it was actually bassist Fat Mike who said it.)

• Judging from the size and energy of the crowd, the Descendents really are the weekend’s top attraction. Kicking their set off with “Descendents” off 1985’s I Don’t Want to Grow Up and “Hope” off 1982’s Milo Goes to College, the reunited Hermosa Beach-born quartet—singer Milo Aukerman, guitarist Stephen Egerton, bassist Karl Alvarez and drummer Bill Stevenson—sound young and vibrant, tearing through 29 songs in 70 minutes.

• “Hopefully that’s my last Peter Brady moment of the night,” –Aukerman, after his voice breaks during “Get the Time.” It doesn’t happen again.

Descendents guitarist Stephen Egerton

Descendents guitarist Stephen Egerton

• Aukerman complains more than once about the effects of the “firecracker burger.” He’s probably referring to the ghost pepper-infused spicy burger at Aria’s Skybox sports book grill. Strevenson moves a giant trash can into position … just in case.

• Alvarez asks if anyone remembers one-time Vegas punk promoter Guy Smiley. The crowd is mostly silent, a sure sign out-of-towners outnumber locals, or at least old-school local punks, at this event.

• Highlights include the Minutemen-y “Van;” “All-O-Glistics,” which sees Aukerman break out a tablet with the band’s commandments (“thou shalt not commit adulthood,” “thou shalt not commit hygiene,” etc.) on it; a crowd sing-along for “Clean Sheets;” what Aukerman says might be the first-ever live version of “Shattered Milo;” and the 17-second blast “I Like Food.”

Descendents setlist:

01 “Descendents”

02 “Hope”

03 “I'm the One”

04 “Pervert”

05 “Silly Girl”

06 “Rotting Out”

07 “Nothing With You”

08 “I Wanna Be a Bear”

09 “Clean Sheets”

10 “My Dad Sucks”

11 “Van”

12 “Myage”

13 “Get the Time”

14 “I Like Food”

15 “Coolidge”

16 “All-O-Gistics”

17 “Talking”

18 “Everything Sux”

19 “Shattered Milo”

20 “I Don’t Want to Grow Up”

21 “Coffee Mug”

22 “Suburban Home”

23 “Weinerschnitzel”

24 “Bikeage”

25 “I’m Not a Loser”

encore

26 “Sour Grapes”

27 “Catalina”

28 “Kabuki Girl”

29 “Thank You”

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Spencer Patterson

Spencer Patterson is Las Vegas Weekly's Managing Editor, having previously served as Arts & Entertainment Editor, Music Editor and a ...

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