I’m blogging from the Abbey, just past midnight. Minutes from now, 90s local punk rulers No Empathy will take the stage one last time to celebrate the 20th anniversary of frontman Marc Ruvolo’s Johann’s Face label.
I’ve said it before…nostalgia’s a powerful force. There are roughly 200 black leather jacket-clad faithful here who undoubtedly got some of their most telling bruises at No Empathy shows back in the quote-unquote day.
Before I left for the show, I watched the final hour of VH1’s “Best One-Hit Wonders of the 80’s.” In almost every instance, the songs and artists were unabashedly dated. The show was pure nostalgia, and it felt like it. Tonight’s nostalgia trip doesn’t play out the same way. No Empathy’s music was raw, melodic, spirited, and of-the-moment; that “moment” feeling just as contemporary in 2009 as it did before the band’s 1997 break up.