BEST JUKEBOX - 2000
The temptation to give this category to some vintage jukebox spinning old 45s is strong, but the Triple Rock's giant, impossibly diverse trove of CDs represents something a bit more salient: a challenge. Find another jukebox where you can program Bikini Kill's "Rebel Girl," Screamin' Jay Hawkins's "I Put a Spell on You," Public Enemy's "Don't Believe the Hype," and Desmond Dekker's "Israelites" and we'll buy you one of the Rock's patented Big Ass Meatwiches--plus a vegan white russian to wash it down. By now, saying anything is punk rock is as meaningless as using the once significant distinction "hip," but Fridays round this jukebox are certainly crusty and leathered. Open ears--and empty pockets--abound in this former home for Blondie's on the West Bank, so go ahead and program all the songs you want: Agnostic Front, then the Clash, then, say, Cheap Trick's "Surrender." We did, and found at least one hooligan dressed in a wall of spikes singing along to all three. The machine advertises 18 songs for $5 but gives you 20--that's punk rock--so offer your whole booth a few choices on you. Just ease up on the Dead Boys, will ya, and toss on a Dillinger Four cut in tribute: A member of the local punk-pop band owns and runs the bar.