While we regrettably missed the opportunity to finagle our way into that Record Store Confidential rock show, the postponement did free up our Saturday schedule, allowing us more time to freeze our asses off with friends in the Grimey’s parking lot. There, we caught sets by Atlanta’s Carnivores — a psych-rock outfit you owe it to yourself to check out — an impromptu performance from punk-as-fuck newcomers Snakeyez— a fraternal duo comprised of Scene fave Cortney Tidwell’s budding sons, heirs apparent to JEFF’s throne — Hunx and His Punx, and The Mattoid’s final, full-band performance in Nashville. Gotta say, while it was a little hard to shout along to “Party Time” with lumps in our throats and tears in our eyes, the emotional warmth of the moment more than assuaged our biting shivers, coating our cold goose-flesh in broken, Finnish folk-speech.
The other reason we — and probably everyone else who made it back to Third Man on Sunday — were pleased at the rescheduling is that it was absolutely gorgeous out. And since The Spin hardly ever gets out to see the light of day, we were all about soaking in the mild rays at one of the last surviving first-generation rocker’s sublime, sunny Sunday sock-hop.
So, how was it? Well, at a spry 75 years old, The Killer was still, well, killer. His voice — now a rich, aged-like-wine croon — sounded killer as he soothed the crowd with an early-in-set rendition of “Georgia on My Mind.” Appearing in a dapper black-slacks-and-vest get-up, he was dressed to kill. When his slow-drawled banter was intelligible, his jokes killed, like when he introduced “I Wish I Was Eighteen Again” by saying that he literally wishes he could be 18 again. “I know I cain’t, but I wish … ” he joked. And when Lewis tickled the ivories, he did so with the precise, rapid-fire trigger fingers of an infantry air-gunner. And a succinct, rollicking set list that featured classic staples the likes of “Sweet Little Sixteen,” “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” and, of course, “Great Balls of Fire” was, well, all killer, no filler.