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Review: Punk Rock Night Awards 2011

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Review: Punk Rock Night Awards 2011

Greg Brenner, alongside longtime punk partner and now-replacement Rich Barker, strikes a Nixonesque pose.

Punk Rock Night Awards 2011

Melody Inn, Oct. 1

4.5 stars

It's past 1 a.m. at the historic Melody Inn, and longtime Punk Rock Night impresario Greg Brenner is giving his farewell speech. Let’s listen in to see if the capstone of his 11 years of dedicated service is received with the respect and sentimentality we’ve always come to expect from the PRN scene.

“Get the fuck off the stage! Shut the fuck up! Less talk, more rock!”

Guess not. Brenner takes it in stride: “Why don’t you go eat a bag of dicks? I’m fucking talking here!”

Good to know the PRN crowd will never let us down.

If nothing else, the PRN awards is always a great chance to see what happens when the punk rock kids try to go formal, with an entertaining mess of fishnets, evening wear and Doc Martens. Still, over the years, we seem to have gotten the whole classy-punk thing down pretty well. It should come as no surprise that Brenner himself is not terribly good at that part.

Among other memorable incidents, the ladies of longtime PRN staples Bottoms Up Burlesque presented Brenner with an award for his longtime support: “You were there at the beginning and you’ve always been there for us since,” Meg Olsen noted. In what probably stands as the best line of the night, Brenner retorted, “I was just trying to get into your pants!”

And Rich Barker, PRN assistant maestro, proved an able host in the warmup for his new gig as host and organizer. He presented Brenner with the Joey Ramone Lifetime Achievement Award and a plaque with a dial that goes up to 11. (Rest assured that the Spinal Tap vein was mined many a time tonight.)

Brenner, who's transitioning to a new role that is less retirement and more full-time elder statesman, enjoyed himself much as he always does at these things. Let’s let him have the final word: “For everyone who said we couldn’t fucking do this here in Indy, just remember we fucking did this on our own!”