Metallica and Gallagher are still here, but Metallagher, sadly, are no more. The local cover band, which paid homage to the heavy-metal legends and mustachioed prop comic, played a farewell set Saturday at the Triple Rock after a warm-up from two comedians. Peoria stand-up Travis Lipski bombed hard, but with such dark humor ("Seat belts save lives--not if you're waiting for an organ transplant") and masochism ("My mother molested me") that audience rejection seemed part of the plan. Girls Gone Wild's Doug Stanhope more than lived down his "Show me where babies feed" celebrity--"one dumb thing I said when I was drunk inadvertently turned into my 'Git-R-Done'"--by whacking similar taboos with righteous zeal. (It's the job of an instinctive truth-teller to leave us with the image, for instance, of Hendrix as a living lame-o, playing Superbowl halftime with Elton John.) Metallagher played the hits ("Creeping Death," "Fade to Black") and smashed the food (watermelons, apples, a giant jar of Miracle Whip), kindling fond nostalgia all around (in my case, for Gallagher's early-'80s Showtime specials, including his Sledge-O-Matic spoof of Ronco-type commercials, in which he simply brought out a giant sledgehammer and smashed stuff. Sorry, but no amount of abuse from MST3K can rob this act of its childlike charms). In case anyone took the breakup announcement as an April Fool's joke, both Metallagher's main Gallagher impersonator and "Gallagher 1" (the backup) ripped up their rainbow shirts. (Gallagher 1: "Why do you ever want me to come back to this?") Lipski, meanwhile, redeemed his heckled self by allowing a melon to be smashed on his stomach--applause at last!
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