When Superchunk were just starting out in the late ’80s, they went by simply Chunk. Though they had to change their moniker to separate themselves from a New York-based jazz outfit, the name originally came from drummer Chuck Garrison; somehow a phone book had misspelled his name “Chunk”, and the group took it as their own. Though Garrison left the band shortly before the release of their sophomore album, 1991’s No Pocky for Kitty, the name Superchunk remained. Last night, the original Chunk himself returned to Superchunk for the first time in 25 years.
It all happened at the Scharpling & Wurster variety show at Durham, North Carolina’s Motorco Music Hall on Sunday evening. Current Superchunk/Mountain Goats drummer Jon Wurster was hosting the event with his comedic partner, radio/podcast host Tom Scharpling (The Best Show). For the encore, Wurster (in his Philly Boy Roy persona) was joined by his Superchunk bandmates, including Garrison on the drums. “This is a big deal,” Philly Boy Roy reportedly told the crowd. “This is the first time he’s played with the band in, what, twenty-five years?”
Together again, the band ripped into their breakthrough debut single, “Slack Motherfucker”. Wurster and Scharpling both joined in on the screaming vocals, while other performers danced about the stage shooting off streamers and confetti. Check out the one-off reunion performance below.
Earlier in the evening, Scharpling and Wurster duetted on a cover of Queen and David Bowie’s “Under Pressure” with house band Robert Sledge (Ben Folds Five), Peter Holsapple (the dB’s), John Plymale (Pressure Boys), and Rob Ladd. Check out that performance below (via Indy Week).