Pennywise and Danzig brought over two decades worth of nostalgia to the Warfield on Thursday night full of beer soaked mosh pits and punk rock patches.
People wore their emblems on their chest, illuminating which band they were most thrilled to see. Tattered Pennywise shirts displayed a toughness of weathering several mosh pits, new and old classic Misfits shirts revealed the timeless influence they’ve had on several generations while the classic Danzig logo reigned supreme.
The pairing might have seemed odd, but Pennywise was undoubtedly inspired by the Misfits bellowing punk rock choruses when they formed in 1988 and derived their name from one of the freakiest movies of all time, IT. Fronted by original singer, Jim Lindberg, the band thrashed through their set with anti-societal anthems like “Fuck Authority,” “Society” “Fight till You Die” and the tribute to their previously deceased friend and bass player, Jason Thirsk, “Bro Hymn.” People sang along, pumped their fists and moshed, disproving any myths that punk rock is dead.
Danzig took the stage next, coming out to a roaring cheer as one of rock and rolls true iconic figures. Dressed in all black, sporting his signature tight black shirt and cow skull belt buckle, he flexed his muscles as they plunged right in to “Skincarver” from 2004’s Circle of Snakes album. Danzig, a man who seems to defy age, cavorted around a stage decorated with colossal lifelike recreations of his haunting logo, occasionally putting one leg on a monitor while screaming into the microphone that he lifted above his head. It was apparent that he still loved playing his songs as much as he did back when he broke out with his debut album in 1988, and while he didn’t allow the crowd to take photos, he included them for better or worse.
Through the first couple songs Danzig was clearly frustrated with a certain attendee, and after playing “Until You Call on the Dark” finally had enough. “This guy isn’t having any fun,” he preached, singling the person out. “This cool guy probably comes to all the shows and stands close to the stage just so he can flip the bird. Well, get this guy out of here.” People supported his call to justice, fueling the pit for, “Her Black Wings.”
Danzig didn’t play any Misfits songs but he did play some unexpected covers. “As you know, we’re coming out with a new album,” he confessed. “It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for the past twenty years…a covers album.” He started by praising one of the most iconic American singers of all time, Elvis Presley, with a rendition of “Let Yourself Go” exhibiting just how similar the two singers are in terms of breeding a defining image, and the tonality of their voices. He followed with another cover to one of rock and roll’s most unappreciated surf rock guitarists, Davie Allan and the Arrows, which he dubbed the ‘biker movie theme song’, playing the eerie surf rock tune, “Devil’s Angels.” And yet his praise didn’t stop there, commending perhaps the most influential metal band of all time, Black Sabbath, with his rendition of “N.I.B.”
Of course, Danzig couldn’t exclude his most successful song of all time, “Mother,” hitting all the high and low notes of the song with the crowd backing him up. Afterwards he held a shouting match over which song to play, “Normally I wouldn’t do this,” he admitted, “but we’re gonna ask what you wanna hear.” The crowd ultimately chose “Lucifuge,” from Danzig II. Through an eclectic set that included covers, “Black Hell” from the Hangover Two soundtrack, songs like “Satan’s Child,” “Black Mass” and “Snakes of Christ,” he ended with an appropriate song, “Dirty Black Summer” releasing the crowd back into the depths of a cool July summer night on the dirty streets of the Tenderloin in San Francisco.