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Jane’s Addiction: still crazy after all these years

Perry Farrell: the man that time apparently forgot. And thank God for that.

blog by Ben Kirst  • 

So I was reading an online Jane’s Addiction bio while plotting out this article and my mind was blown by how much crazy and interesting stuff I had forgotten about the guys in this band over the years. Legitimately legendary vocalist Perry Farrell and the once-beloved, now semi-obscure Porno for Pyros project? Somewhat legendary guitarist Dave Navarro in the Red Hot Chili Peppers and—even weirder—Flea in Jane’s Addiction? Freaking Duff McKagan in Jane’s Addiction? Lollapalooza? That’s barely the pierced tip of the naked, scarred and occasionally catatonic iceberg that is Jane’s Addiction. These guys have been through a lot, and their web of influence spreads across the music of the past 25 years like a bizarre shadow.

And they’re coming to Western New York! Farrell, Navarro, drummer Stephen Perkins and touring bassist Chris Chaney will offer a 7:30 p.m. show on Monday at Artpark (450 S. 4th St., Lewiston). The band’s current Theatre of the Escapists tour is in support of their fourth studio album—that was kind of a surprise, considering they’ve been around for what feels like forever—The Great Escape Artist, which peaked at #12 on the Billboard Top 200 following its October 2011 release. Tickets start at $47.50 and are available through Tickets.com.

 

Although the band has been touring sporadically for the past year, Jane’s Addiction really hit the road hard hard this month—and the reviews have been solid. Their “private” post-Lollapalooza show in early August was hailed by Lauren Drell of Huffington Post, who wrote “...(Farrell) led the heat-soaked and sweat-drenched crowd on a 75-minute-long journey, filled with a mix of older Jane’s classics and newer songs that rivaled any act across the stages at Chicago’s Grant Park.”

The band’s performance in Syracuse was typically circus-like, sexual and sort of insane. Mark Bialczak of The Post-Standard wrote, “...excess was a theme, wretched and otherwise. Two women swinging from trapezes to start the night wore gowns that hung several dozen feet down toward the stage. Then they weren’t wearing the bottoms. A guy dressed in white, face covered, walked across the stage carrying a bag over his shoulder. Another guy, up top on a riser, looked for all the world like he was slicing into his face while washing it.” Sounds about right.

After a scorching but rain-shortened performance at the Bethlehem (Pa.) Musikfest and subsequent arguments with festival organizers, the band allowed ticketholders to attend a show in nearby Philadelphia for free. Farrell remarked that “...“when I was a kid, I went to see Led Zeppelin in Tampa in 1977. They came out and played three ripping songs before rain soaked us all, and they flew off in a helicopter. Bethlehem, no one should have to feel that pain of seeing the band they love split, disappearing into the night.”

And that’s not all! Farrell is apparently planning to appear in his second reality show. Navarro is currently experimenting with flesh-hook suspension, which is exactly what it sounds like. Let no one ever say that Jane’s Addiction got boring. We’ll see you on Monday night.

Photo from JanesAddiction.com.

TAGGED: artpark, jane's addiction, live performances, perry farrell, summer scene

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