By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
Dallas Observer in-jokes usually don't warrant mentioning in print, but this week, I'll make an exception for our office's Hot Dudes Wall. The music section receives a lot of goofy press photos, but we don't just make fun of them--we stick the dumbest, campiest ones on a huge wall and give them the spotlight treatment. From old men to little babies, from afros to mullets, the Hot Dudes Wall hardly lives up to its name, but its best photo by far is thanks to a band called Bang! Bang!
The paper has wondered for years who this ridiculous hair-metal quartet is (pictured, bottom). Our years of research only yielded an outdated Italian Web site (web.tiscali.it/bangbang) with an album cover for Wild & Glamour, on which the long-haired guys stood in a digitally altered version of Rome's Coliseum. So when an e-mail showed up this week announcing that "Bang! Bang! comes to you," we tore off our shirts, grew our hair and brushed up on our Italian.
Problem is, this Bang! Bang! isn't from Italy but Chicago (pictured, top), and the indie-rock trio, who sounds a lot more like Pretty Girls Make Graves than Poison, had never even heard of their doppelganger until I called lead singer Jack Flash to break the bad news.
"Oh my God, get out of here!" he said, demanding a copy of the other Bang! Bang! photo between fits of laughter. I warned Flash about the potential for chaos at their Wednesday concert--dozens of shirtless Italians demanding hair-metal gems like "Monkey" and "Sin City" and getting into slap fights over peace-sign medallions--but he wasn't fazed.
"We're just a three-piece rock band that looks like the early '80s," Flash says. "We already have sweet hairdos and outfits. The similarities [with the other band]--that's the real scary part!"
The news won't change the act--Flash insists that the synth-rockers will still stick to material off their latest EP, Electric Sex, rather than wail with hair-metal covers. But now that he knows about his Banging rivals, he's prepared for the worst if they ever meet.
"You mean like a showdown? If they want a showdown, bring it. BRING IT!" But after hearing more about the Bang! Bang! photo, Flash reflects. "They may beat us. We're a sex-rock band, but they sound like they're a little sexier than us. We might be screwed."