What do you get when a handful of Punk Rock icons play a setlist full of classic songs? Dead Men Walking!

Comprised of Slim Jim Phantom on drums, Mike Peters of the Alarm and Chris Cheney of The Living End on guitar, and Captain Sensible on bass, Dead Men Walking played to a near capacity room in San Francisco, and ran through a setlist that included some of the most recognizable anthems in the history of punk rock, rock-a-billy, and alternative music.

The band hit the stage of the Brick and Mortar Music Hall with “Rock and Roll Kills,” and original tune from their just released Easy Piracy, and then put on an almost 90-minute set that included “Neat, Neat, Neat,” “Runaway Boys,” “The Stand,” and “Smash It Up,” as well as a handful of original tunes. All four members were smiling and laughing with each other the entire time, which gave the show more of a jam session or rehearsal type vibe. Watching it all unfold, one could not help but to be truly blown away that although they are all legends in their own right, there was not one bit of attitude, or anyone taking themselves too seriously. It was just four dudes on stage having what appeared to be the time of their lives.

Although they wrapped up their set with the Mike Peters fronted “45 RPM,” the Dead Men Walking were not done yet. Joining them for the last five songs of the evening was none other than Jello Biafra, a San Francisco and punk rock legend. He and the band tore through “Rock This Town,” “New Rose,” the Dead Kennedy’s anthem “Lynch The Landlord,” (which, as Jello pointed out, was written about a property that was less than a five-minute walk from the venue), before closing the evening’s festivities with a cover of the Beastie Boys “(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party!).” It was the perfect way to end what was truly a spectacular show put on by a stellar cast of blokes.

Support for the evening came from Barb Wire Dolls who, although originally from Greece, have been making a name for themselves by touring the U.S. non-stop for almost five years. The band attracted the still growing in crowd up to the front of the stage while delivering a tight set of female fronted, U.K. inspired punk, and proved to be an excellent choice to open the show on this tour.

National Rock Review photographer Raymond Ahner was on hand to report.

Dead Men Walking
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Barb Wire Dolls
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Brick & Mortar Music Hall
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About The Author

Raymond Ahner is a professional freelance photographer residing in San Francisco, California. Growing up in the Bay Area, Raymond was lucky enough to witness both the Punk and Thrash Metal scene of the 1980's explode literally right in front of his eyes. It was a pretty special time in his life, and is what instilled his love for live music. Over the years Raymond has been fortunate enough to combine his passion for live music with his love of photography. And although he will always love shooting the big arena Rock show, it is in a tiny, packed to the rafters club were he his most at home with his gear.

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