The amphitheater was electric with anticipation. It was just one year ago that Courtney Love announced she was rehearsing new songs with the original Hole lineup, causing particular corners of the Internet to erupt with elated tweets and gratitude. In December they hit with a bombastic announcement: a one-night only performance in New York City.
After two-hours, Love, Hole’s controversial lead singer, hit the stage. “Thank you,” she screamed, her voice ravaged and deep. “I’d like to introduce my band, the original lineup of Hole.” The crowd was inconsolable, the wails plaintive and desirous. “First up, Hole’s founding guitarist — Chuck Berry!” A besuited Berry was guided across the stage by a roadie. The crowd’s reception was timid and scattered; most fans were looking at each other in utter confusion. What was happening? Hole’s founding guitarist was Eric Erlandson. Chuck Berry recorded “Johnny B. Goode” in 1958.
“Okay, and now the bassist that I recorded music with in the ’90s, which was when Hole made music, right?” Love seemed to be looking for an answer from the crowd. “Yeah, okay, my ’90s bassist — Willa Ford!” The former pop singer who released the one-hit-wonder “I Wanna Be Bad” in 2001 strutted across the stage clutching a bass guitar. “Okay, great, we’re doing great,” Love murmured. “How about our drummer — our drummer who drummed on Live Through This, which is an album I made. Here they come!” At this point a spotlight went up on a 8″x12″ piece of paper that had the word “person” scribbled on it. It took ten minutes for a tech to blow the paper across the stage and onto the drum stool.
It became increasingly clear that Courtney Love has no idea who was in the original Hole. It took the show’s entire allotted run time to “get the rest of Hole” on stage. According to Love, Hole is compromised of an American Civil War reenactor (dressed as a Union soldier) on a second set of drums, actor Jon Voight on air drums, the Muppet house band Dr. Teeth and the Electric Mayhem all on one keyboard, teen blogging sensation Dwight “Scuttlebutt” Landry on computer keyboard, an Asian-American housewife named Courtney Love on mandolin, a saxophone on keytair, Mark Zuckerberg who just stood around, a red panda on shoe, a sex doll on tympani, “someone’s grandpa” (that’s how he was introduced) on “stern reprimands,” a plastic bag on Jon Voight’s head, the lint in the first row’s pockets on standup bass, milk carton on milk jug, a cryogenically frozen Mao Zedong on pan flute, time on time, Coldplay on conscious uncoupling, and North West on rainstick.
As the crowd filed out of the amphitheater, disappointed and unclear on what had just happened, Love shook a gnarled finger at a man near the bar. “And that guy,” she growled. She was pointing at me! “Yeah, that guy was in Hole, too. Original Hole guy, right there. Kurt loved him. That guy on, on…he plays spoons.” In short, the concert was incredible. Five out of five stars, would go again.