Commemorating the 25th anniversary of their 1994 album, Rubberneck, Toadies toured their home state of Texas in December 2021 and traveled to other states this month. Joining them on this tour are another band from north Texas, Reverend Horton Heat, came on stage at Irving Plaza in New York, NY at 8:50PM. The band consists of drummer Jonathan Jeter, bassist Jimbo Wallace, and Jim Heath, a.k.a. Reverend Horton Heat, and they are celebrating Liquor in the Front which was released the same year as Toadies’ Rubberneck and was produced by Ministry’s Al Jourgensen.
Heath informed the audience that some of the songs from Liquor like “Yeah Right,” they haven’t performed in a really long time. Before “Liquor, Beer, and Wine,” was played, the Reverend told a story about Al being a fan of country music and mixing that song for a long time. Once the record was finished with all 13 tracks being performed in order, RHH performed songs from their earlier releases to complete their set, such as “400 Bucks,” “Psychobilly Freakout,” “Galaxy 500,” plus a cover of Motörhead’s “Ace of Spades.” Heath noted that Sub Pop re-released their first three albums on vinyl before they launched into the fiery “400 Bucks.”
Toadies at Irving Plaza
Toadies took the stage about 10:15 PM, with singer/guitarist Todd Lewis noting that they would perform some non-Rubberneck songs first, and then diving into that album later. The fourth song of their set, “Closer To You,” was brand new. Lewis asked the crowd if we were ready for Rubberneck before the band launched into “Mexican Hairless,” which immediately sounded louder to me than everything they played before it, and I was wearing earplugs and standing in the back of the room. During the second song from that album, “Mister Love,” the audience sang along very loudly with Lewis, which continued for the rest of the record. For “I Come From the Water,” Lewis gestured to the audience during the chorus and let everyone sing those five words multiple times solo, before he sang another verse.
Singing along to a song like “Velvet” with opening lyrics of “you hurt me, you fuck” loudly with other people in my early 40s felt as great as it did alone in my bedroom as a teenager. The album closed with Todd performing “I Burn” on acoustic guitar and the band expanded to seven members from the original four (two people were added for percussion and another guitarist). The band had rolling papers available at the merch table named after this song. After “I Burn” was over, the set ended with the band returning just shy of 11:15PM for an encore. Lewis declared “I’m having a fucking blast, how about you?” and thanking the openers of Nashville Pussy and Reverend Horton Heat, plus the audience for keeping live music alive before performing another new song he described as a love song called “Long Time.” The final song of the night was a cover of Screamin’ Jay Hawkins’ “I Put a Spell On You.”
Before Sunday’s Irving Plaza concert, I saw the Toadies in 2014 for the 20th anniversary of Rubberneck and if they continue to celebrate the anniversary of a record I fell in love as a teenage girl, I’ll do everything I can to be a member of the audience singing along loudly again with others for the 30th anniversary that will hopefully happen in 2024.
Scroll down for setlists, fan shot videos and pics of the show (photos by Edwina Hay)
Reverend Horton Heat setlist: Liquor in the Front- Big Sky, Baddest of the Bad, One Time for Me, Five-O Ford, In Your Wildest Dreams, Yeah Right, Cruisin’ for a Bruisin’, I Could Get Used to It, Liquor Beer & Wine, I Can’t Surf, Rockin’ Dog || 400 Bucks, Psychobilly Freakout, Galaxy 500, Ace of Spades (Motörhead cover)
Toadies setlist: Little Sin, Polly Jean, Push/Hand, Closer To You (new song), Song I Hate || Rubberneck Mexican Hairless, Mister Love, Backslider, Possum Kingdom, Quitter, Away, I Come From the Water, Tyler, Happyface, Velvet, I Burn || Encore: Long Time (new song), No Deliverance, The Charmer, Rattler’s Revival, I Put A Spell On You (Screamin’ Jay Hawkins cover)
REVEREND HORTON HEAT