Five Firsts: Mike Grundy of the Last Conspirators

August 6th, 2014, 11:00 am by Greg
Mike Grundy

Mike Grundy

NAME: Mike Grundy
BAND AFFILIATION: The Last Conspirators

1. THE FIRST ALBUM I EVER BOUGHT WAS … I got Meet the Beatles for Christmas when I was in elementary school. I remember being pissed it didn’t have the cutouts like Sgt. Pepper did. Dad had a pretty big record collection: classical, jazz, Broadway cast recordings. Mom listened to the Beatles and Herb Alpert a lot. I’m pretty sure the first one I pulled my own money out for was Back in Black by AC/DC.

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LIVE: The Last Conspirators @ the Low Beat, 7/19/14

July 24th, 2014, 3:00 pm by Greg


Photographs by Rich Krissel
Additional photograph by Tracey Leach

The Last Conspirators stormed into the Low Beat in Albany last Saturday night (July 19), debuting their new lineup, with a blistering set of originals, peppered with a few surprise cover songs by the Morons, the Ramones and David Bowie, two of which featured Max “The Sax” Media sitting in with the band.

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LIVE: The Last Conspirators @ LarkFest, 9/21/13

September 27th, 2013, 12:00 pm by Greg
Tim Livingston of The Last Conspirators (photo by Gene Sennes)

Tim Livingston of The Last Conspirators (photo by Gene Sennes)

Photographs by Gene Sennes and Bryan Lasky

If you’re going to throw a CD release party, why not do it at Nippertown’s biggest free music festival, LarkFest? That’s exactly what the Last Conspirators did last Saturday (September 21), when they unleashed their new album, A Celebration of Fury. Featuring gravity-defying frontman Tim Livingston and powerhouse drummer Al Kash (both veterans of the very first LarkFest 32 years ago!), as well as razor-sharp guitarist Terry Plunkett and bassist Nick Bisanz, the band charged through a high-energy sonic assault, railing against corporate radio, mindless nostalgia and the powers that be. The themes may not be anything new, but the band played with the palpable passion of rebellion, adding a new-found metallic edge to their already potent brand of politico psych-punk.

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CD: The Last Conspirators’ “A Celebration of Fury”

September 17th, 2013, 12:00 pm by Greg

The Last Conspirators: A Celebration of Fury

Review by Allison Gregory

A Celebration of Fury
(Driving Rain Music)

The Last Conspirators are about to unleash their third album, A Celebration of Fury, and they’re doing it in a big way with a CD release party performance at LarkFest in Albany on Saturday (September 21). Labeled by many as a punk band, these four musicians display their musical diversity with surf-inspired guitar in “Last Ones Standing,” ’60s jangling distorted guitar in “Radio Warfare,” the country/rock sound of “Somewhere Tonight in America” and ’60s psychedelic rock sprinkled in perfect proportions in “Desperate Skies.” After listening to the album, it’s apparent these guys are seasoned veterans at what they do.

The production of the album by the band’s guitarist Terry Plunkett is spectacular. All of the tracks are balanced. Throughout the album, there is not one song that has too much bass or an overpowering guitar part. The vocals are clear. It’s apparent that both the producer and Albany Audio’s John Chiara (who recorded and mixed the album) have keen ears and know how to make an album sound fantastic.

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LIVE: Great White Caps @ the Hollow Bar + Kitchen, 5/30/13

June 3rd, 2013, 4:00 pm by Greg
The Great White Caps

Great White Caps (photo by Tim Livingston)

Review by Greg Haymes
Photographs by Tim Livingston and Ruby

Kowabunga, dude!

The sweltering heat marked the undeniable start of another summer – even if it was still only May. And Great White Caps rode the heat wave into town for a Thursday night show at the Hollow in Albany.

Imagine a cross between Los Straitjackets and the Neanderthals – but without the Mexican wrestling masks or the Flintstones’ faux furs. Instead, the four-piece Great White Caps were decked out in more traditional beachwear – cut-offs and such – as they took to the stage to pump out a night of what they like to call “beach rock,” a sizzling summertime hybrid of old-school surf ‘n’ garage rock.

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LIVE: Mike Watt & the Missingmen @ Valentine’s Music Hall, 10/18/12

November 16th, 2012, 12:00 pm by Greg
Mike Watt  (photo by Kirsten Ferguson)

Mike Watt (photo by Kirsten Ferguson)

Review and photographs by Kirsten Ferguson. See more of Kirsten’s photos from this show here.
Additional Mike Watt photograph by Jason Spiro. See more of Jason’s photos from this show here.
Last Conspirators photograph by Denise Jordan
. See more of Denise’s photos from this show here.

Across town at the Palace Theatre, fans screamed and stormed the stage when Smiths’ singer Morrissey bared his chest during his debut Albany performance. Over at Valentine’s Music Hall on the same night — at a show that unfortunately competed for some of the same fans of ‘80s college rock — bassist Mike Watt stripped his shirt off onstage, too.

Granted, when Watt did it the show was over and fans had mostly cleared out, and the former Minuteman was really only swapping his sweat-soaked stage flannel for a drier shirt to wear in the van. He and his partners in plaid — guitarist Tom Watson and drummer Raul Morales, who made up the Missingmen — had just ripped through 30 rapid-fire songs in 45 minutes and then played a frenzied encore of classic Minutemen tunes.

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LIVE: J.B. Scott’s Reunion @ Michael’s Banquet House, 5/5/12

May 11th, 2012, 2:50 pm by Greg
(left)  The Last Conspirators and (right) Charlie Smith

(left) The Last Conspirators, (right) Charlie Smith (photo by Stanley Johnson)

Review by Fred Rudofsky
Photographs by Stanley Johnson and Gene Sennes

“I have actually been invited,” I thought to myself, echoing the astonishment of Nick Carraway when he arrives at Gatsby’s West Egg mansion party in Fitzgerald’s novel. My magnanimous friend, Alison, had given me an advance ticket to the J.B. Scott’s Reunion Party. Pulling into the already crowded parking lot shortly after 7pm, I couldn’t help but realize that I would be likely one of the few revelers too young to have ever attended a show at the legendary venue that had closed 30 years ago, having drawn everybody from Count Basie and John Lee Hooker to the Cramps and Iggy Pop.

I had missed the Penny Knight Band, and the Last Conspirators were already playing full throttle as I entered the ballroom of Michael’s Banquet House, where a large crowd of people danced like it was 1979. The late Joe Strummer would have been proud; I imagined the punk rock warlord raising a Guinness to the band as they tore into originals like “Who Wants a Revolution Anyway” and “History,” the latter beginning with Tim Livingston’s declaration of “Drink to all our futures! Long live J.B. Scott’s!” and then closing out with his microphone stand getting bent in half.

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LIVE: The Last Conspirators @ Valentine’s, 3/23/12

April 6th, 2012, 1:00 pm by Greg
The Last Conspirators

The Last Conspirators: Terry Plunkett, Al Kash, TL Stone and Nick Bisanz

Review and photographs by Kirsten Ferguson

“Thirty years ago this weekend in a shit bar downtown called the Chateau Lounge, a band no one gave a shit about called the Morons did their final gig,” said singer TL Stone (aka Tim Livingston), an original member of the Morons and the current frontman for the Last Conspirators.

He and Morons sax player (and one-time drummer) Max “The Sax” Media had joined opening act the Knyghts of Fuzz onstage at Valentine’s to pay tribute to the 30-year anniversary of the long-defunct Albany group.

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