• Thor - Live At Dante's, Portland, Oregon, September 14, 2007.



    Hey, remember concerts? Concerts were fun. Covid-19 has kind of completely fucked concerts for the time being, who knows when we’ll get to enjoy live music again, so with that in mind, why not relive past glories through pictures of concerts from days past? Let’s do it!

    A long, long time ago in a galaxy far, far away known as Portland, Oregon, one Jon Mikl Thor – or just plain old Thor to the masses – played a show at Dante’s, a club on West Burnside in the downtown area famous for overpriced drinks and overpacked shows. This would have been around the time that the Into The Noise album came out. It was also one Ian Miller’s birthday, so it was a big night all around and many beers were consumed during the pre-game session at a local pizza joint.

    Upon arrival, the show was started by a band called…. I dunno. I don’t remember what they were called, but I do remember that they were dressed in medieval garb, that they played pretty traditional power metal pretty well, and that they did an awesome cover of Manowar’s ‘Pleasure Slave’ that left a lot of people in the audience more than a little confused.

    After that, Portland’s own The Punk Group – comprised of Brain 'The Model' Applegate and Tony 'Sex Object' Cameron - hit the stage for their own brand of comedic Devo-influenced synth rock, rattling off hit after hit like ‘Fat Girls On Bicycles,’ ‘Lesbians,’ 'Heineken,' 'Bone Down' and 'International Rock Stars' before closing their set with a tribute to the man himself, 'Here Comes Thor!.'

    With the first two bands having sufficiently warmed up, the big guy wandered out onto the stage clad in a plastic Viking helmet, rubber skulls hanging from his belt and dangling over his cod piece, and waving his hammer around, backed by a pretty killer band including a guy who wore a V For Vendetta mask for much of the set! Having conversed with Thor before the show (and getting the Synapse DVD release of Rock N Roll Nightmare autographed, of course!), he was aware that birthday festivities were happening and unbeknownst to Ian Miller, had a little something special planned for the night.

    But before that was to occur, I was asked to accept a challenge, and when it comes to Thor, you accept all challenges if you know what’s good for you. As luck would have it, there was no one to play an evil wizard in the show that night, so I was recruited to wear a cape and mask, skulk about the audience during portions of the set, then get on stage, attack Thor with a giant plastic axe, and have the man, whose arms are bigger than my legs, wrap a metal microphone stand around my neck. Honestly, having a former professional bodybuilder wrap a metal microphone stand around your neck on stage can be a little intimidating, but it wouldn’t be much of a challenge if it weren’t.

    Once I’d been ‘killed’ the set continued, heading towards its close – but when as it drew near to the end, Thor called up any ‘Valkyries’ out of the audience who might want to join him to come on up and dance for a bit. This led to a few ladies getting up on stage to shake their moneymakers and then one specific lady getting up on stage, giving ol’ Thor a good grind, and then… just kind of hanging out there for a while until she and other ladies left, but not before forcing Thor to drink a beer! Thor, the consummate showman, mooned the crowd and changed his mask but didn’t let her wreck his flow, and when it was time to finish things up with a rousing rendition of his classic ‘Keep The Dogs Away’ he rightly called the birthday boy up on stage to join him on vocals, ‘Ms. Thing’ getting back on stage and strutting her stuff the entire time until Thor literally picked her up and removed her from the stage.

    It was, as you can probably imagine, a pretty nutty show and a complete blast from start to finish.

    Concerts are still rad and I still miss them. Anyway, here are a bunch of pictures from the show and a neat video too.