Flashbacks: July 7, 2006

The Boston Phoenix has been covering the trends and events that shape our times since 1966
By EDITORIAL  |  July 5, 2006

Flame thrower | 5 years ago | July 6, 2001 | Carly Carioli marveled at C.C. DeVille’s onstage theatrics during Poison’s reunion tour.
“Perhaps you’re familiar with the ‘80s glam-metal band Poison, who arrive at the Tweeter Center in Mansfield this weekend. Maybe you remember mournful power-ballad hits like ‘Every Rose Has Its Thorn,’ or the three-chord bubblegum-sleaze anthem ‘Talk Dirty to Me’ — or maybe you remember only the make-up and the hairspray, or pretty-boy singer Brett Michaels’s headbands. But if you don’t remember guitarist C.C. DeVille, it’s difficult to describe what’s been happening at the band’s triumphant reunion shows. Rail-thin, shirtless, electrical tape over his nipples, a shock of bleached-white hair streaking away from his head as if his brain had finally set off for someplace where it might be better appreciated, DeVille looks like a glam-metal version of Iggy Pop: leaping, sliding, flailing, and above all else, rocking.

“Even on the phone, at midday, he’s manic and raspy. The reporter hasn’t even asked his first question, but C.C. is off and running. ‘It’s crazy here, right now. I’m in Kansas City and it’s amazing, I caught fire last night. They had these — it was okay — but we have these bombs, I’m not used to where they go off, I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, it caught my leg. I’m limping but I’ll be fine.’

“At least they didn’t have to bring in a replacement, the reporter offers, the way they did when Metallica’s James Hetfield caught on fire. ‘Yeah, well, except whatever replacement they brought in would be better than me,’ crows DeVille, who is not precious about his abilities. ‘We had pyro last year, but not this dangerous. We had fake pyro. We had — the equivalent would be on the Fourth of July, everyone else would have blockbusters, and we’d be the kid with the sparklers. Now we’ve got blockbusters, and we’ve got the crazy uncle that’s drunk and setting them off any time he feels like. Actually, I think they’re trying to get me, ‘cause I tend to get on people’s nerves. I’ve almost been blown up four times this week. I’m a lucky man.’ ”

Out of this world | 10 years ago | July 5, 1996 | Gary Susman basked in Independence Day’s fireworks.
“Believe the hype. Forget Twister, Mission: Impossible, The Rock, and Eraser. At the end of the summer, Independence Day will be the only action blockbuster anyone will still be talking about, or lining up around the block to see. It’s not just that the movie provides two-hours-plus of quality thrills, chills, and spills. It’s not because of the special effects, which are top-notch but will also remind of two movies from 20 years ago: Star Wars and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. It’s not even in the childlike glee of seeing landmarks like the White House and the Empire State Building blown up, or the sure-fire crowd-pleasing destruction of those capitals of sin, Los Angeles, New York, and Washington, DC – hell, even the hundreds of New Yorkers I saw it with cheered – or the demise of the First Lady, all of which will have zeitgeist-chasing editorial columnists chattering for weeks. For all of Independence Day’s mayhem and apocalyptic body count (hundreds of millions? billions?), the film’s secret is that it’s not the least bit mean-spirited.”

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