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We took the subway to 14th street. The train smelled like stale beer and Friday’s pepperoni pizza re-discovered on the fire escape Sunday morning. I checked my bag and was relieved to discover antibacterial stuff my nieces gave me for Christmas. I put some on my hands and wiped the excess on Raj. Seconds later I realized what I’d done. We were on our way to a Life Of Agony show covered in sparkles and smelling like candy.

Many years ago we saw Mina Caputo on the street somewhere in the Lower East Side. This was before or maybe during her transition. LOA wasn’t on my radar for a long time. Anyway my boyfriend melted into a giddy 14-year-old and just opened his arms (which Mina graciously dodged), expressing his love in happy expletives. It happened again last night only this time Mina was on stage and larger than life, holding an entire ballroom of lifelong fans.

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We were in the presence of greatness. All at once the crowd surged forward and around and some very enthusiastic fisty dancers broke through into their happy place. This incredible band thrilled a lot of people yesterday as they finally gave the world new album. A Place Where There’s No More Pain is everything I didn’t know I needed.

Mina Caputo performed with such confidence and swagger. Her voice is as powerful and gripping as ever. You can argue it’s even better but why bother comparing when all that matters is that they’re making great music again and now it’s coming from a good place. After months of empty horribleness, seeing them live filled me. I felt so lucky to be there. I never thought I’d get to see them perform. Now here they are right when we need them with a brand new album.

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My sisters call me The Pusher. When something is good I just want everyone in the world to read it, hear it, taste it, do it, go experience it. I’m not allowed to push things on them anymore, they say. We have different tastes, they say. Fine, I say.

Their loss. But the show’s magic bubble hasn’t popped yet and I’m feeling the urge to … push. Listen to Life Of Agony. Check out their new album over and over. Go see them and have a good time. You don’t need to be a lifelong fan to appreciate the new album. This isn’t a nostalgia trip. They still have so much to say. And if you’re ever lucky enough to see any of them on the street, please give them our thanks and love but maybe don’t try to hug them.

 

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