Today's Special Guests: Mike Bolam and Trouble!
We here at 7IS.com are happy to bring you our first installment of special guests with our good friend, ardent supporter, and Pittsburgh metal master Mike Bolam. You may know Mike from his earlier days in seminal Pittsburgh thrash band Crucial Unit or his current bass work in Warzone Womyn (my current favorite in Pittsburgh's DIY punk scene) or even his vocal abilities in the new grind machine of Build Your Weapons.
Mike was stoked to come over to the joint and whip us up on of the more fabulous meals I've had the pleasure of experiencing: Vietnamese hoagies! Having never had even the flesh variety, I was even more interested in seeing what vegetarian Mike would cook up for us. The answer we got was more than I bargained for, because it was so fuckin' boss.
Mike showed up at around 6 PM on Saturday, loaded to the gills with a cooler full of beer (and fancy stuff, mind you... there's no half-steppin' here), bags of eats, and a boss record for us to check out. The whole crew was here, including not only John-Boy and Hone, but also the lovely Big Suzz, who not only helped document the evening, and clean up for our guest. We (especially me) were already a little bit lubed-up before Mike had gotten there, which made our conversations a little more nonsensical and the food taste even better.
After we got ready to roll, Mike set up his ingredients, which for tonight were going to be tofu, tempeh, assorted veggies, and a gang of sauces Mike whipped up which blew our minds; two words: wasabi mayonnaise. Immediately Mike started slicing and dicing while we threw on some tunes and cracked open some beers (and a little vino).
Mike brought over some delicious Dale's Pale Ale (an IPA for for those who have never had one before... meaning it was plenty hoppy and had a nice sweetly smooth taste). However, unlike most of the fancy beers I imbibe, Dale's comes in a can and it tastes even better for it, in my opinion.
Moving on to the grub, Mike set to work chopping up his tofu, mixing up his tempeh, and getting ready to lay it all down on the stove. Pretty soon things were heating up and they smelled great. We learned that when frying tofu, the amount of oil we had used before was quite inadequate. Basically, you need to move into almost deep-frying territory. Here's what we had going for us by then:
Pretty soon our apartment was full of the smell of delicious fake meats. Mike began slicing up carrots and other assorted veggies for this sandwich, and also steaming up a vegetable I'd never had before called edamame, which looked a lot like snap peas to me, only you don't eat the husks, just the bean-like pods on the inside.
By now, the tofu was frying; we were all huddled in the kitchen, drinking, smoking, and rockin' out; and generally having a blast.
Soon, the baguettes were heated (fuck you Whole Foods!) and we were ready to throw these together and get some grub in our stomachs. Mike added his sauces and veggies (and some special sliced jalapeno, which really completed the sandwich). Here's a couple pictures of the finished product. Please excuse the lighting and blur of any of these pictures, we're wasted. That's how it works:
Look at that! Do you know how big, filling, and delicious this was?
Well, we do. We destroyed them. There was no holding back.
Moving on, Mike brought a record with him to give us a little taste of what he likes to hear when he's cooking. It turned out to be some serious metal that I put 100% behind, the Midwestern 80's doom band Trouble. We were turned onto an album called Psalm 9, which is Trouble's first LP (and also self-titled somehow... confusing). I had previously heard this band only once when Mike spun it at his Metal Night here at Pittsburgh's Smiling Moose where he spins thrash, doom, grind, death, and all the other related metals you can think of.
Anyway, Trouble blew my mind back then when he played "The Bastards Will Pay". Not only was there a nice Sabbath-y groove coursing through my veins, but the melodic leads and vocals seemed to fit right in and show you that doom was not always SunnO))) nailing black metal fops into coffins. Trouble were on Metal Blade throughout the 80's, and actually played again recently in their home city of Chicago, must to the delight of white hi-topped Hessians everywhere. This is real metal for real metalheads. Anyone here listening to Avenged Sevenfold or any of the fake Headbangers Ball-core will be disappointed and rightly so, because you're a fuckin' dork, kid.
So with full bellies and brains full of "white metal" (the tag given to Trouble by their promotions department to combat the rise of the black metal style, from what I'm told), we took to a drinkin' and a-carousin'. People showed up who I've never met before, the cops showed up to tell us to turn down the jams, I passed out on the couch, and wine, beer, water, and all sorts of other things were spilled. Mike seemed to have a great time hanging with some of his favorite scumbags and showing off his stuff. He did a great job and made us all feel a little more metal (except for Hone... he hides it well until he gets wasted, calls us all gay, then stumbles off into the night).
We'd like to thank Mike for making us some great food and playing us a great record. We had a blast! We also apologize for the photo quality this time, but I think you understand what's going on here... scumbags of the highest order. Until next time!
* Posted by Steve-O
PS: If you wanna be featured on here, let us know and we'll set it up! Or if you wanna help us get more drunk and take our photos for us, too! Thanks Mike!