California Blues

A needle in a steel wool haystack.


I’ve been to maybe a half dozen shows since the last post, none of which I feel the need to post about. Either nothing happened of note, I couldn’t make out the slide guitarist from the blurry after image of the same slide guitarist I could see, or I had far much more fun with the venue than the show. Originally, I thought I might refine my writing skills and my ability to critique music by posting in this blog.

Blow that for a lark.

Now, I think I’ll review just about whatever’s on the top of my mind, which could be anything from Elijah Craig bourbon to a sadly neglected BBC Radio show, but probably most likely an interesting bar/venue.

On the slate for tonight, The Doll Hut, Anaheim, CA. Everyone told me it was famous for punk music. I realized nearly immediately it was famous for ska and southern California punk, and possibly, on a long shot, old school rockabilly.. In my mind, those are far different from punk, but that’s probably because I lean a bit more new wave and post punk than I lean American Hardcore. This venue is old school for orange county, and is ideally placed amidst downtrodden car lots for an ideal ear blasting sound. Though, surprisingly, the sound was quieter than your average West Los Angeles “dive”. With a tiny bar area and open air back patio, this place has just about everything you could ask for, even a good Guinness pour. Hell, even the semi-retro Bettie Page-esque artwork suited the place.

It’s vaguely near Disneyland and I-5 so it might not be too terrible a location. Sadly though, if your someone who judges musical acts by their band name, it’s far too easy to see why the place didn’t seem to be doing much business. Granted, it was a Thursday night. I arrived solely for my local favorites, Armada. The preceding band Karmakaze wasn’t bad for that very illusive ska sound. The following band might’ve had good songs but I could barely hear them and dear lord did what I hear sound like it came from a cookie cutter of late 90s pop punk. The Doll Hut itself, was very laid back and congenial to a great night or afternoon of drinks, music, and whatever you want out of the cigarette vending machine. They had one and it had their tobacco permit taped up in the window. The beer was cheap, the sound solid and the atmosphere welcoming.

Hmm. I say welcoming and congenial but let get this straight: it is a dive bar. For those familiar with only West LA bars, this is another level. It is a proper dive bar, but at least it plays half decent music and pours good beers, even if they come in a plastic cup. If you ever have a reason or a chance, give this place a once over and stay for a couple rounds.


1 March 2011 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment