The Sea And Cake + Robbers on High Street + The Zincs at Belly Up Tavern, Solana Beach

Post Author: Gordon Downs

Monday nights are not exactly jam packed with excitement. Most are devoted to really shitty open mics, or straight up dark clubs, cuz there ain’t no motherfucking business. In the quaint and highly affluent sea-side suburb of Solana Beach, California, it seemed that a large percentage of the patrons at the Belly Up Tavern this Monday night had gone to the club to continue their privileged weekend of alcohol and excess. Many of them paid the $15 cover charge, which could’ve been for Ugly Kid Joe and Toad the Wet Sprocket for all they knew. It was apparent that many of the douche bags in attendance had no clue who The Sea And Cake were, let alone their opening acts Robbers on High Street and The Zincs

Earlier in the evening on my way to dinner, I found myself stopped behind a pick up truck with a dog riding in the back of the bed. Most dogs I find riding in the back of trucks usually stick their heads off to the side so that their little doggy faces can catch the air as it speeds into their nostrils and mouth. This dog however, was kinda sitting/laying down in the back of the truck, and to be honest he looked kinda bummed out. He only stood up once during the ride, and even then it was very briefly. It was right about then when I was inspired to make a photo book consisting solely of images of dogs riding in the back of trucks, taken in actual traffic from the driver seat of my vehicle. Then I realized in order to do that I would have to leave the shitty ass 1996 digital camera I inherited from my father in my ride, and that probably wouldn’t suit the digital camera too well as the summer months in southern California are known to roast the interior of most vehicles. I suspect that this animal will probably die within the next six months.

Before heading to the restaurant, I stopped off at a VONS Coin Star to exchange pennies I had been saving in of an empty “Chupa Chups” container since 2001 that I’d been dragging along with me to my various residencies for the past six years. Hollywood, Long Beach, Seattle, Yosemite, Portland and San Diego; the swear jar rode with me from city to city, accumulating more pennies each day, getting heavier as fuck with each drop in the bucket. Six years later the empty “Chupa Chups” container had finally reached its apex, and was almost overflowing with pennies.

This was my first Coin Star experience, and it sucked. The fucking machine got jammed right at the end of my transaction and some crazy Filipino bitch yelled at me for wearing flannel in May. After the Filipino bitch took off and VONS resident moustache arrived and fixed the Coin Star, I walked out of there fifteen minutes later than I expected, but also with $60 I did not originally have.

Pennies: they are worth something.

After Coin Star, I headed out for a smart and healthy meal at one of southern California’a most notoriously health-oriented eateries, Thank God It’s Friday.

Thanks to some lovely young ladies I had met weeks prior, I managed to receive a complimentary filthy martini and an employee discount on my Key West Shrimp.

“Skewers of seasoned char-grilled shrimp topped with a sparkling citrus splash and served with a side of vegetables.” Being that I had recently embarked on the South Beach diet, I am limited to eating seafood and vegetables when I dine out for the next two weeks. The Key West Shrimp seemed like a perfectly logical selection for me. And yes, I know that vodka is not allowed within the first two weeks of the South Beach diet. Go fuck yourself for even knowing that you sack of shit!

We arrived at the club at the end of The Zincs set. I tried to rush inside but as usual, there was a mix up at the box office with my tickets and photo pass. After fifteen minutes of waiting, my tickets were handed to me and I entered the club exactly as The Zincs were breaking down the last of their gear. I had recently received a copy of their latest release “Black Pompadour” from Thrill Jockey records, and when I discovered they would be opening for The Sea And Cake, I thought that this would be the ideal show to catch. As I stood waiting for second act Robbers on High Street to begin their set, my mind drifted back to the Coin Star that had yielded me sixty dollars but also taken away twenty extra minutes of my life and no doubt assisted in causing me to miss The Zincs set.

My digital camera from 1996 is a piece of shit, as is evident by the shitty live action photos. The Robbers on High Street are not the toughest looking guys on the block. Their forty minute set of jangly pop songs seemed to excite the obnoxious douche bags in the crowd more than anyone else. And while I certainly did notice some obvious fans and hipster chicks peppered throughout the evening, the Belly Up Tavern was predominantly filled with rich bitch chaunch; which was still only slightly unusual for a May Monday night in Solana Beach.

By the time The Sea And Cake took the stage my vodka and olive juice buzz had subsided, and my desire to throw my five pound digital camera from 1996 into the ground was beginning to seem like a decent alternative to holding it. The Sean And Cake began their set with “Starting Line”, my personal favorite track off their new album, “Everything.” Their second song of the set was also a new one, “Too Strong.” No doubt a song about how twenty two year-old female bartenders at TGIF pours drinks. Four songs into their set, a couple of dumb drunk bitches rushed the stage and actually tried to dance like go-go dancers! After one song, Sam Prekop finally got fed up and said, “Does anybody work here?” Where upon those words a disgruntled Mexican in a polo shirt with the clubs logo on it came to remove the drunken girls. It was unusual, watching two grown women in full view of five to six hundred people try to gyrate their bodies to The Sea And Cake as if they were in a BET “Uncut” video. I could tell John McEntire wanted to shove a drumstick in both of their eyes.