The Jesus and Mary Chain's battling Reid brothers were at it again Saturday night at the House of Blues in Los Angeles. They got into a shouting match onstage during an aborted show that ended after just 15 minutes, with older brother William Reid leaving the noise-pop band's U.S. tour just two dates into the excursion.
The older Reid split after a brief, sloppy show, during which younger brother Jim Reid was reported by the venue's management to have been inebriated and belligerent. "I thought it was f---ing amazing," said Jay Scavo, a longtime J&MC fan and manager of Saturday night's opening band, Possum Dixon. "There's no spontaneity in rock anymore, and these guys were onstage, yelling at each other, fighting and carrying on."
The gig, the second on the band's current tour in support of their recently released album, Munki, lasted less than 15 minutes and ended after Jim Reid knocked over microphone stands and got into a verbal fight with the band.
The result is the departure of William Reid from the tour, which continued on Sunday night, minus William Reid, with a show at the Coach House in San Juan Capistrano, Calif.
"You just never know what to expect when you go to a Jesus and Mary Chain show," explained Sub Pop Records spokeswoman Cece Stelljes, who would not confirm that the younger Reid was under the influence during the rock show. She said the band will continue on without William Reid, who is staying with a friend and has not yet returned to England. "I don't know if he'll join them again or not, or if they'll do the whole tour as a four-piece," Stelljes said.
The tour began at the Ventura Theater in Ventura, Calif., on Thursday. The remaining members of the band -- guitarists Jim Reid and Ben Lurie, bassist Phil King (Lush) and drummer Nick Saunderson -- will play their next show Tuesday night (Sept. 15) at the Ogden Theatre in Denver.
The House of Blues refunded the $22.50 price of admission, according to venue spokesman Josh Mills, who was not at the show but said he heard it was a "big fiasco." The gig was just the "typical battling brothers thing," as far as Mills heard, referring to the Reid brothers' notorious sibling rivalry. "The show ended when the curtain came down and people started throwing ice and cups," Mills said.
At various points during the aborted performance, Jim Reid would yell such things as "Play anything but that," according to Scavo, who said the band's tour manager even contemplated calling the siblings' mother to try and get them to settle down.
"It was amazing," Scavo said of the display. "I was in tears, jumping up and down. You normally go see a rock show and they play the songs just like they are on the album and it's so boring. You might get that kind of thing with Oasis, but everyone else plays a perfect show and there's no edge," he added, referring to the equally notorious Gallagher brothers, who also have been known to squabble on- and offstage and who even cancelled a U.S. tour early because of tensions in the band.
Scavo said he hadn't seen such a display as he did Saturday since the last time he saw the Jesus and Mary Chain in L.A., when they played the Palladium 10 years ago for a show that lasted 20 minutes.