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Plenty of groups come to mind when you think of “good bands to take drugs to,” but for me, one totally fuzzed out, gnar’d to the max, pure psych-rock outfit takes the cake: DEAD. MEADOW.
Fucking Dead Meadow man! I’ve been into them since I started smoking weed in college in 2008 as a freshman. In those days we didn’t have “legal states,” and I was in the Appalachia-Midwest, so we smoked and ate whatever we could come by. They were touring a ton those days, especially in our neck of the woods, and I was never on less than three or four substances each time — fucking epic.
These days though, as a professional in my 30s, I’ve really reigned in the partying. I don’t really drink anymore, and I left the trippers behind, because let’s face it, you can’t raise two kids on two hits of LSD. I still use cannabis responsibly where I can and when I have time… like last night, when Dead Meadow graced our presence yet again. For my first concert in a post-COVID world, I grabbed a 100mg THC edible for the occasion — a giant disc of a gummy that hit all the right spots to make my night truly unforgettable.
Here is what I remember about seeing them again after all these years:
I ate the gummy waiting in line. I went alone because none of my current friends have ever heard of Dead Meadow, not to mention it was on a Wednesday night. I definitely felt old as I began to come up outside the venue entrance. I started to fixate on conversations between some of the younger fans: they were all buzzed about hearing tracks off their release from 2018!? Something about nothing and need? I can’t even remember the title at this point. In my head I was screaming at them, “YOU’LL BE REALLY LUCKY IF THEY PLAY SOME OF THE STUFF FROM THE EARLY-TO-MID 2000s,” but I kept that to myself. I think.
Anyway, it was like, 20 minutes? No, maybe it was 55? Hm. I was out there for at least 40 minutes I guess, then they started letting people in. I remember being indecisive about whether I wanted to be upfront like I would have been in the old days, or just chill in the back, and this sent me into a crazy introspective self-debate about the nature of prescribed behaviors based on age and whether they were arbitrary or not. I actually missed the opener, as I stood like a statue in this deep contemplative state for some time. The crowd had already well filled in by that point and I still hadn’t walked more than 15 feet.
I snapped out of it when I got shoved by a rambunctious crowd member — the opening band must have been somewhat heavy.
Um. Then there was an intermission, I think. Or maybe it was just a gear change over? Anyway, I went to get a beer. I waited in line for about 15 minutes until I realized I was actually in the line for the bathroom, and then I went and got in the line to get an actual beer.
I’ll be honest, there’s a big sort of “black out space” from here until midway through Dead Meadow’s set. I know I must have managed to get a beer at some point because from what I remember next, I had it in my hand, but I was also in the center of the crowd with my shirt off and howling at the band. I think I searched for those kids in line so I could yell “now THIS is Dead Meadow,” but gave up on that pretty quickly. They definitely played Sleepy Silver Door, which you can now hear on a car commercial. Psh.
From there it fast forwards to me outside of my house, eating some pizza that I don’t remember where or how I got. I’m really anxious that I let myself drive in such a state; I don’t think anything happened. Thank God I didn’t wake up my wife. I did have some vomit stains on my boots this morning, though; those went right into the trunk of my car to hide the evidence.
All in all, I can’t party like I used to, nor can I eat weed like I used to. I guess I’m glad I saw Dead Meadow in a somewhat abridged version of how I used to see them.
I should end this and check my bank statement before my wife gets to it. Happy music viewing, everyone.
Jay Shingle is a comedy performer and musician from the Pacific Northwest, and he is the creator of @ordinarypeoplememes on Instagram.
Disclaimer: This Article Is a Joke
Speaking of absurdity, did you know there are still over 40,000 people locked up on nonviolent cannabis-related charges around the US? It’s time to let them out.