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Black Lips and Wavves Fight: Wavves Wins, Black Lips Bitch

Sometimes two little wieners who take jabs at each other over the internet turns out to be just a wussy little war of words. When those two happen to be in the bands Black Lips and Wavves -- two bands whose pride reaches staggering amounts -- shit can seriously go down, like it did last Friday at Brooklyn's Daddy's (for those keeping track, the bar is in Williamsburg). Words were exchanged, spit hit faces and one dude -- Black Lips' Jared Swilley -- ended up with a bloody head, compliments of a beer bottle. Since when did indie rock turn into hair metal circa 1992?

Perhaps this wouldn't be that big of a deal, had both sides kept their cool. That is, however, not the case in this particular instance. Nathan Williams, better known as Wavves, had exchanged words with Black Lips' Jared Swilley a while back. Some thought the two would get after each other this June at the Pitchfork Festival in Chicago, which both bands played. Nothing happened, however, and everyone's egos stayed unbruised. 

Fast Forward to Williamsburg on Friday night, at Daddy's. Both men so happened to be enjoying a drink at the establishment, Williams with his girlfriend. A confrontation was imminent, and glances, as well as words, were exchanged. The following ensued, as witnessed by the blogger Pop Jew in Brooklyn:
Wavves was playing with Zach Hill as his drummer and the sound was different and pretty cool. We were partying pretty hard, and as always seems to happen, the party moved to Daddy's after everything was settled up. Daddy's was packed and the remnants of the Beets (welcome home, boys!) show at Dead Herring (happy birthday Cathy!) and the Black Lips show in midtown also had migrated to the ever popular "hot spot". Star Studded scene to the maxxxx, if you like slightly "important" indie rockers. 

Now, I didn't see exactly how the fight happened, but I had heard the gossip a few months back about Jared (from Black Lips) talking shit about Nathan on the Internet. Pitchfork went as far as to wonder if Nathan and Jared would have a confrontation when they both played this summer's p4k fest in Chicago. Needless to say, that didn't happen.

Well, I suppose last night was the perfect storm. I didn't see the beginning, but I did see people dragging Nathan and Jared apart, and then Jared and a popular DJ running at Nathan again, spilling beer all over everyone (including me), and punches being thrown. The lights at Daddy's were turned on, the cops showed up, but Jared and the chick were not ready to stop fighting and were even trying to fight other people outside the bar. Jared was bloody. Nathan was fine. Insane. Weirdest indie rock moment I've experienced.

A pretty accurate run down of the events, as witnessed by someone actually at Daddy's. But it gets better. Oh, does it get better. Behold, Nathan Williams' own account of what happened [via BrooklynVegan]:
"Talking shit about me on the Internet is one thing, I can handle that all day but when some dude is just looking for a fight at 4 in the morning talking shit to my face and his girlfriend is spitting in the face of all my friends it's a whole different story. I have no problem wih black lips or anybody else that i havent met but jared has been at me every chance he had. I just want to play music and have fun. It was unfortunate that it escalated to that point but he got what was coming to him."- Nathan Williams (WAVVES)

Oh, but wait, the best part has yet to come. Behold, the splendor that is Jared Swilley's account of what happened [via Buddyhead]:

"First of all, I just wanna say that Wavves was NOT involved in that fight. That faggot didn't even touch me.

I've never "come after" that kid, it wasn't four a.m., that wasn't my girlfriend, no one was spitting, and I didn't attack him. I don't give a shit about that kid and his music.

What happened was, after we finished our set I went to Daddy's with some friends and saw that faggot from Wavves talking to a photographer friend of mine. The only thing I did was walk up to him and say "You're that faggot from Wavves and I don't like you". He smiled a bit but didn't say anything.

After that, I went outside and saw their tour manager hanging around with some guys. They started getting all chuckles with me and so I told them I wasn't gonna have it. After that, Wavves tour manager hit me square in the face with a bottle. Blood started pouring out and six dudes fucking started kicking me until I blacked out.

All I remember is getting hit with the bottle and my friends dragging me to another bar. They wrapped my head up until I looked like a Confederate soldier.

So yeah, I lost the fight.

I also missed three flights. I've been in the airport all day having stewardesses cleaning my head because it kept cracking open. You can't go on board if you're bleeding.

Bottom line is that faggot from Wavves didn't even hit me. Never touched me. And he should've, cuz he had a free shot.

He's coming to Atlanta October 3rd and we're gonna get ugly on him. We're gonna destroy their van, we're gonna destroy their faces, we're gonna get crazy on em'. Nasty style.

As offensive and tasteless as his response is, it really puts everything that happened in perspective. He is obviously not happy about what happened (duh) and plans to shake some shit up in ATL come this Saturday. I personally find this to be rather amusing, having read Swilley's account before anything else. Wavves isn't God or anything, Williams' music isn't that good. It sounds like a pretty chickenshit way to handle his business, but he won this first round. Who knows what carnage lays ahead for Williams in Atlanta, but I know I will be waiting to see just exactly what -- if anything -- happens. 

Williams will be in Phoenix October 15 with Ganglians at The Rhythm Room. That is, if he still has a face.

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Michael Lopez