Robb Flynn remembers Machine Head’s first show 30 years on: “the police came”

Machine Head playing live at the Bloodstock festival in 2022
(Image credit: Katja Ogrin)

This week marks the 30th anniversary of the first ever Machine Head show, and frontman Robb Flynn has posted an amusing anecdote to mark the occasion. 

Posting his memory of the historic gig, which took place in Flynn’s hometown of Oakland, California, on August 15, 1992, the singer/guitarist, who remains the band’s only original member, notes that it was a somewhat chaotic affair.

 “30 years ago today Machine Head played our first show at a house party on Woolsey Street in Oakland, CA,” Flynn writes on Instagram. “House party, Isn’t really the right word, our friend / man-of-many-hats Mike Scum was getting evicted, so as a fuck you to his landlord it was a “destroy-the-house-party “ with Machine Head as the soundtrack

House parties and kegger parties weren’t anything new to me at this point. Back when I was in [Bay Area thrashers] Forbidden all the early shows we ever played were backyard parties, living room parties, community centers, VFW halls. There was always an insane vibe doing shows like that, and I wanted to recreate that feeling, especially since a couple of my guys were green AF and playing their very first shows ever. It was Tony Costanza on drums, Logan Mader on guitar, Adam Duce on bass.

Across the street from Mike was an infamous punk rock house, called The Woolsey House, and all of them came over and gleefully took part in the destruction. Many a hammer was punched into the walls. We bought several kegs, and raged HARD. When the police eventually came, I proudly walked up to his glass front door sporting my “fuck the police“ shirt, and refused to let them in since they didn’t have the authority to enter. It was a hell of a way to start this journey all that time ago.”

Flynn wraps up by thanking his fans and noting that a brand new Machine Head album, Of Kingdom And Crown, is right around the corner, arriving on August 26.

“Kinda blown away that I’m about to drop a new album in 2 weeks, and that anybody still gives a shit about the band,” he says. “If your [sic] still here all these decades later...thank you from the bottom of my blackened heart for going on this wild ride with me.”

Machine Head recently stunned fans at the UK’s Bloodstock Festival by playing a surprise set in the Sophie Stage tent. They tour the UK and Europe this Autumn with Viking metal mainstays Amon Amarth.

Merlin Alderslade
Executive Editor, Louder

Merlin moved into his role as Executive Editor of Louder in early 2022, following over ten years working at Metal Hammer. While there, he served as Online Editor and Deputy Editor, before being promoted to Editor in 2016. Before joining Metal Hammer, Merlin worked as Associate Editor at Terrorizer Magazine and has previously written for the likes of Classic Rock, Rock Sound, eFestivals and others. Across his career he has interviewed legends including Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy, Metallica, Iron Maiden (including getting a trip on Ed Force One courtesy of Bruce Dickinson), Guns N' Roses, KISS, Slipknot, System Of A Down and Meat Loaf. He has also presented and produced the Metal Hammer Podcast, presented the Metal Hammer Radio Show and is probably responsible for 90% of all nu metal-related content making it onto the site.