Rich kids on A.R.E. and the drunken, cool NYC hipsters who love them

Life & Art Bruised Editor

People talk shit, people talk trash, when people talk about me I just have to laugh (or throw their punk ass over a couch). Wordicus.

For some reason, I’ve seen the Weapons perform live more than any band this year. And for “some reason,” I’ve had the best times at their shows – most likely because it’s all rage, no thought, all alcohol, zero downers, all laughter.

Paul Sevigny – why’d you have to go do that, dude? Like, did that article really piss you off that bad? ‘Cause it was more directed at Miami than you, and fuck that, you did ride away from that show at I/O in a white limo this summer – we saw it. So, sue me for “slander,” go ahead.

And that article was punk rock – everything written about A.R.E. Weapons is kiss-kiss-kiss-ass or a diss by Page Six Six Six. All I wanted to establish was middle ground. But there’s no middle ground with the Weapons – it’s all skinny-armed Warriors we’ll-fuck-you-up-bitch! Which is pretty awesome, especially if you’re drunk.

Setting: Plaid in NYC, right after a rousing set by Panthers. Here come the Weapons: Brain, Matt and Paul, all drunk-as-fuck, the former two with hair in their eyes, the latter with a Yankees cap on, black T with cut off sleeves i.e. handmade Beater. Here come those cheesy-cool drum machine beats, Brain’s screaming, Matt’s hitting the bass. Show is hilarious and catchy. Kids are jumping everywhere, there’s barely even a stage – crowd-and-band interaction full-tilt. Paul stumbles into the crowd halfway through a new track to shake hands with friends, as the beat loops like a rock star afterthought.

L&A’s Samantha Riepe (!) is in there taking photos like a soldier. All of a sudden she gets knocked down – I a-m wasted – “Was that Sam(antha)? Holy shit, no way!” She gets picked up by some concerned hipster wastoids, and crawls to me. Pick her up – look at her eyes – “Looney Tunes” – she leans in for a kiss, head spinning. What are you saying? “Get back in there and take some photos babe!” Punk rock shit.

Oh shit! The Weapons go into “Don’t Be Scared,” the best song ever-ever-ever – have you seen that vid on MTV2? Go request that pink-screened low-low budget gem and peep Paul’s fists-in-the-air-back-to-keyboard = awesome!

I’m waving a beer bottle around in the air, singing my smoke-free lungs out, w-a-s-t-e-d. The Weapons get you amped off the anthem(s). ‘Cot damn! Paul’s coming over here to kill me – look at him. Nah, he’s giving me, actually shoving the mike at me, and I’m screaming the hooks, “Don’t be scared, be cool motherfucker, be cool” over-and-over-and-over alongside him. Matt and Brain are falling onto the floor, head banging – absolute madness, beer and water bottles everywhere – it’s going to be that slaughter, “Ahhhhhhhhhhhh.”

After the show: relative anonymity, feeling ballsy, siked, and drunk. Go up to Brain (who’s being hit on by some chick). “You mind if we do a quick photo shoot?” “Cool man, go talk to Paul.” Go up to Matt, “Yo, mind if we do a photo shoot?” “Yeah, cool dude. Talk to Paul at the bar.” Go up to Paul [getting shots at the bar], “Yo Paul, can we do a quick photo shoot?” “Yeah, sure man. Meet me over there.”

As I am ordering beers at the bar, I overhear a flirtatious, “So, where you guys from?” from the stage. Oh, fuck, fuck, fuck, tell me Sam still remembers? “We’re from Miami.” Oh, god, no! “Miami!” My eyes flinch over to the stage, Paul Sevigny is rushing at me with Sam’s camera gripped tight. “Death-by-nice-camera,” I think.

“You motherfucker! It is you! You are fucking dead!” His eyes bulge white. I notice how jacked he is all of a sudden.

“Paul, uhh dude, what the fuck you talking about dude?”

“Why are you wearing that fucking hat! That’s Supreme, those are my boys! [Throws my hat on the floor]. You don’t deserve to wear that hat! You see this camera, I am going to fucking smash it.”

“Dude, what in the fuck? You mean, over that article? Dude, listen, that shit was a joke. You saw me singing to your songs tonight. You gave me the mike!”

“My fucking dad read that article. My dad went to the University of Miami. He read that shit!”

“Listen, man.”

“No. Fuck You! Chloe is a good girl. Chloe pays my mom’s bills!”

“Dude, I didn’t diss your sister.”

“Fuck You!”

[Bumps into me and I go over a couch, land on the floor, staring at the ceiling. Bouncers get antsy and move in.]

“Oh shit. Dude, get away from me!”

[Matt goes over to Paul]: Paul, this isn’t that dude. Look at him.

“Yeah, who does he think I am? Dude, I go to Columbia. I haven’t even been to Miami.”

Matt: See, this isn’t him.

Paul: Oh, shit! I’m sorry dude! Let’s go get some drinks.

“It’s cool. I’m cool, man. I’m glad you’d fuck some dude up who dissed you like that. That’s punk rock!”

[We head for the front door.]

[Matt runs after us.]

Matt: Yo listen, dude, we’re really sorry about all that. Paul thought you were someone else. He wants to take you out on the town, we can get you in.

“Nah, man, I got deadline tomorrow, I’m just going to bounce back to the hotel. Thanks for the offer though.”

[Looks at me closer in the light]

Matt: Wait a second, hotel? You said you went to Columbia. Are you sure you’re not that dude?

“What dude, man? I do go to Columbia. The school is paying for our hotel.”

Matt: Are you sure you’re not that dude with a mustache?

“A mustache? That’s the perfect disguise, right? Nah, that’s not me. I’ll be in touch about those free drinks though.”

A.R.E. Weapons are currently at work on a new album that is not on Rough Trade. Paul Sevigny can be seen spinning at Spa Wednesdays at Spa, 76 E 13th St.

Hunter Stephenson can be reached at Huntlaed@hotmail.com.

November 7, 2003


The Miami Hurricane

Student newspaper at the University of Miami

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