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By: gunter habets about 2 months ago permalink

The time is September 1991, the place Jawbone Canyon in the Mojave desert. Just a couple of days prior to their first performance at the Hollywood Palladium in Los Angeles, Fugazi is scheduled to appear as a special guest at the Desert Fest, a small annual Burning Man-style festival put on by Flipside punk zine during the 1990s.

However, according to the introductory remarks by Guy, things went haywire, “we’ve had some unfortunate mishaps today, like our truck broke down and we don’t have any of our gear, we had to walk here for 10 miles on our feet, with no shoes on, […] and Ian was blind, and we had to leave him, and Brendan was lame and we had to bury him, and Joe’s dead because we didn’t talk to him.”

Chalking up the sound quality of the recording as “good” is stretching it in my humble opinion. Ian’s voice sounds muffled while Guy’s voice almost gets buried completely, the guitars and drums sound shrill and crumpled (Joe does manage to get in a pretty mean bass during a tumultuous open-mic version of Suggestion). Nevertheless, considering the unique and memorable circumstances of the event, I do think this recording merits attention.

Footage of the set opener Sieve-Fisted Find is available through Youtube (search using Fugazi + Mojave desert). And while the person who put the clip online appears to have filmed the complete gig (the audio of the recording presented here has been pulled from the VHS source), it has not surfaced so far, unfortunately.

The available audio recording presents a short set of some 10 songs. 4 of these are from the Repeater album, 2 from the 7 Songs debut, another 2 from the Margin Walker EP, 1 from Steady Diet and an eerie early live version of Last Chance for a Slow Dance from the Kill Taker album is thrown in as well.

By: Adrian Grenier over 2 years ago permalink

The stage was a carpet, generators powered the amps, Fugazi played at around midnight and The Offspring, then on little Nemesis Records, went on next as the show went well into the night. The Offspring singer quipped something to the effect of "what an honor to have Fugazi open for us". The joke being that Fugazi was a much bigger band then they were.

Little did any of us know what would happen a few years later.

In spirit probably the best show I've ever been to.

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Fugazi Live Series FLS0394 Fugazi Jawbone Canyon, CA USA 9/06/91

If you had a different price in mind for this download Click Here.
Show Date:
 Jawbone Canyon Desert
Door Price:
Played with:
 Offspring, Sandy Duncan's Eye, & Seven Other Bands
Recorded by
 Nikos-Reed Failure Video
Mastered by
 Warren Russell-Smith
Original Source:
 VHS audio
Sound Quality:
 Poor Good Very Good Excellent

The equipment van broke down on the way to the gig, so the band borrows instruments from the other bands. This show happened deep in the desert in the middle of the night. Powered by a generator and completely illegal.

Play Sample Track
1. Intro
2. Sieve-Fisted Find
3. Merchandise
4. Interlude 1
5. And The Same
6. Interlude 2
7. Last Chance for a Slow Dance
8. Promises
9. Interlude 3
10. Exit Only
11. Interlude 4
12. Styrofoam
13. Interlude 5
14. Blueprint
15. Interlude 6
16. Suggestion
17. Glueman

Please Note: Available recordings have been mastered to correct for volume shifts, drop outs, etc. but some sonic anomalies will still exist, especially early in the set when the mix is being settled. The band has rated each show for sound quality and set the general price of a download at $5 per show. If you have a different price in mind feel free to utilize the alternative pricing option.