By Jacob Katel
By Laurie Charles
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Abel Folgar
By Kat Bein
By Jacob Katel
True practitioners of 24-hour fast-lane ass-shaking know that all good reckless fun involves a healthy gorge of the quintessential ingredients of excess: music, alcohol, and the relentless pursuit of sex. Understanding this means never stopping or slowing while on the hunt; addicted to the night musk and the rush that it brings when scaling the social decline, we let all hopes of spiritual enlightenment wane for the entire seven days in a week.
South Beach with its high concentration of social depravity can offer an assortment of ways to defy the Ten Commandments within its confined boundaries. "All you guys do here is party!" is what a visitor to the sunny shores says. Damn right! What else is there to do -- that is, to the exclusion of all things meaningful and worthwhile? C'mon already and join in on the fun.
And so it goes ... another week, another prolonged and unavoidable journey into the streets of dejected dreams. The entourage saunters by some obviously disappointed soul out walking a none-too-vicious dog wearing a muzzle. A group laugh aimed at the ridiculousness of putting a muzzle on Snoopy is seemingly antagonizing enough to warrant the threat of unleashing the savage beast onto us, to perhaps lick us to death.
"Oh yeah? You won't think his muzzle is so funny when I take it off and let him bite you!"
Maybe someone should have this Met-RX-munching, Speedo-wearing gym rat muzzled and collared. Something about being lonely and short can bring out the classiest characteristics in the dateless in Miami. Buy that man a rum and Coke and shut him up.
Clubbed and counterparts proceed to the cheap thrills of 25-cent beers at the Monday-night institution and local music talent showcase, Brandt's Break Mondays at Señor Frog's Mexican Grill. "The Frog," as it is affectionately referred to by local music citizenry, is the celebrated taco stand turned CBGB's replica where you can bathe in Budweisers and Coronas while moshing to the sounds of grunge band Deezal and any number of other local talents from all musical walks. So who needs karaoke night?
Greeting patrons at the door is Jerry, the tattooed Beach staple who bears no resemblance to a door Nazi. Jerry's warm smile is all indigenous hang. Aside from the smorgasbord of South American women dancing to the thunderous and energy-packed music, there would be no indication that this is Miami Beach.
It is a den filled with would-be rock stars and their supporters -- or maybe just people here to chug the free beer served up till midnight. A quick set by Alana Chirino, daughter of salsa music star Willy Chirino, leads off the evening with a blend of alt-pop-rock. Alana is backed by an "all-star cast" of local musicians (paradox, anyone?): Lou Duvin (guitarist/songwriter), Tony Alarcon (lead singer of rock band Lo Fi/promoter of Señor Frog's Monday-night event), "Billy" (drummer of ska band Dubskatta), and Juan Diaz (bassist for Latin rock band Nuclear Valdez). Her polished set detonates the explosion of the next act, rap band the Linx. Right about now the free booze starts to take a firm hold.
Nickel 5, the vocalist and percussionist for the Linx, enthuses about performing like he's playing Madison Square Garden. "It's a great atmosphere and there is a nostalgia in the room that creates a sense of intimacy between the band and the crowd," says Nickel 5. Then he adds lightheartedly, "And with the free beer till midnight everyone is here to party down." The free beer of course had nothing to do with Clubbed's motive for attending this evening. Nothing at all. We promise. (Belch!)
Nickel 5 and the rest of the Linxes swarm the stage like it's the early days of the Fugees. Armed with guitars, percussion, turntables, and keyboards, their energy transfers through their songs and into the waiting crowd of boogie boys that have formed in front of the stage. Vocalist Angel Garcia belts out Clubbed's favorite anthem -- "The nightlife ain't no good life/But it's my life" -- while DJ SBTU cuts it up on the proverbial ones and twos for the dancing and breaking crowd. Rapcore outfit Aboriginal follows with lead singer Discreet in model Marshall Mathers style, spitting hot lyrics and climbing the speakers (the preferred stage move for the evening) to incite the crowd.
Discreet's white-hot lyrics pour out over the PA as soundman Seth Schere scrambles to tweak the system for maximum power. Oh, it's just so underground! Sends chills up the spine at the thought of maybe witnessing the next MTV sensation. It's no Fillmore and Tony may not be a Bill Graham just yet, but this is as close as Miami gets. Suddenly in all the 25-cent beer excitement, the Monday madness takes flight once again, this time landing at B.E.D. for Secret Society.