Las Vegas Sun

December 18, 2014

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Trainwrecks strives to succeed where others could not

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Laura Davis

The Lazystars debut their new lineup at Trainwrecks.

Details

  • What: Trainwrecks
  • Where:3550 S. Decatur Blvd (at Spring Mountain)
  • When: Open 24 hours
  • For more information: 823-2222

Beyond the Sun

Whether it's the literal catastrophe or the drunken mess in the corner, a "train wreck" is rarely a good thing. So why name a new bar Trainwrecks — especially when it's taking over a site famous for having shuttered both the Emergency Room and Black Label?

"It's a double connotation," explains general manager Brian Gordon. "There's a few train wrecks in here by the end of the night, if you know what I mean. [And] when I first came in here, before I cleaned the place up, I actually said, 'This place is a train wreck.' It was a mess, everything from sound to looks to lighting."

Nevertheless, Gordon predicts success for just-opened Trainwrecks, at the corner of Spring Mountain and Decatur. "It's going to be a slower start for the fact that the last couple places that tried [here] did very poorly," he concedes during Friday's grand-opening party. "They were going for a different concept that didn't work here; I'm going for a concept that will work."

Gordon, who has managed what he calls "high-end" bars like Blue Martini for the past eight years, plans to take his latest neighborhood-bar venture back to the live-music days of the Emergency Room — but only one night a week for now. On the other six, it'll be a sports bar.

"If I can focus my energy on Friday-night live entertainment, maybe down the road we can do another [live] night."

Trainwrecks' grand opening has also unveiled another new face — the latest Lazystars lineup. The former five-piece went "back to the roots" (drummer Brian Havens' words) by subtracting two members and adding one. On bass, 21-year-old Joshua Jackson has replaced Tony DiVincenzo, while keyboardist Stephen Tankersley has also played his last show. Havens says the transformation was a long time coming. "There's certain things, there's empty promises, there's a lot of muck when it comes to rock 'n' roll," he says. "There're those hard decisions that certain leaders have to make. That question, 'Can you bring it? Or can you not bring it?' It's like that movie, The Rocker."

— Originally published in Las Vegas Weekly

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