by Adam Gold
Most music lovers only know multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter and California power-pop architect Paul Collins through the influence he’s had on more commercially successful footstep followers. It’s a downright rock ’n’ roll tragedy that Collins’ mid-’70s trio The Nerves is best known for Blondie’s cover of its classic “Hanging on the Telephone” — or that his next band, The Beat, is best known for having a song on the soundtrack to Caddyshack, or for the Green Day cover of The Beat staple “Walking Out on Love,” which is part of the American Idiot show on Broadway.
A third Me Generation band to have featured multi-instrumentalist Collins (along with his Nerves bandmate Peter Case), The Breakaways (not to be confused with the British ’60s girl group of the same name), is even more obscure, having recorded a series of lost demos that languished unheard for 30 years, before finally seeing the light of day with a 2009 archival release. Also tragic is how Collins and Case’s 2012 reunion tour of sorts collapsed under the weight of infighting and musical acrimony mere days before a scheduled stop in Nashville. Tonight, Collins does his part to make up for that cancellation, bringing the repertory version of The Beat he’s led since 2005 to The Basement.
Tonight's show is an early one and starts with openers Parasite Diet at 6:45. Cover is $10.