The [Ninja Turtles] henchmen Bebop and Rocksteady have hijacked the musical genres for us just like the Lone Ranger hijacked the William Tell Overture for our parents.

- xkcd

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Needs More Vibraslap

While I may not have spent a weekend at the bacchanalia that is Lollapalooza, I did recently attend one of those mythical 'rock concerts.' By recently I would mean last night. To further clarify, I attended to the Foo Fighters acoustic show at Constitution Hall in Washington, DC.

And I have to say that it was a phenomenal show. I like Foo Fighters, but I'm not a big enough fan to actually own any of their CDs. Still, you have to appreciate shows where you go to see the band and they're clearly 'musicians' and not a bunch of chumps up there trying to become famous or impress you with their emo-ness.

That was really the case last night. Performing the with some added musicians (an extra guitarist, a piano/organ/accordian player, an extra percussionist, and a violin) they really filled out the stage and put on an excellent if slightly lower key show. The fact that they spent most of the show playing seated really helped remove the expectations of some of the crazy rock shenanigans you might expect to see at a show. Instead, what we were treated to was a pretty chill event where the musicians performed a tight set that they obviously hadn't gotten tired of playing yet.

And truly, that may have been one of the better aspects of the show. When you go see a group that's as successful as the Foo Fighters, many times the show feels like a retread. And even if things to make it feel as if it's not, there can be an old hat-ness to the performance because it's been done by so many times before. In this case though, they were performing what was maybe their 10th show as group, and there is lots of ground that hasn't been covered yet. Dave Grohl would talk for a little bit between songs sometimes, giving stories and just having what seemed like a nice conversation with the audience. In all, a very enjoyable chemistry between the different members and the audience as a whole. Of course it probably helps that he's from the Northern Virginia area and being back is kind of like 'coming home.'

I could try to go through the set list but I don't really see the point. It was half new stuff (off their acoustic record from last year) and half older songs adapted to the new members/acoustic sound. They all sounded good and unlike some other shows I've seen, the vocals were spot on and well done.

If you get a chance, I'd definitely recommend checking out this tour as it makes its way around.

Also, this is for Fulsome, since he probably wouldn't check it out if it wasn't 'indie' enough:
  • The violinist for the show was Petra Haden, who is in the group that dog (an old favorite of Fulsome's after he saw them touring with Weezer back in the day)
  • The opening act for the show is Frank Black and we know Fulsome hearts the Pixies
  • The percussionist used a vibraslap. That's right, vibraslap. Better yet, when heckled for more cowbell by the audience, his only response, "I don't have a cowbell." Nothing says indie cred like random percussion instruments.


At 8/16/2006 1:40 PM, Blogger teh l4m3 said...

Ugh. The "more cowbell" thing jumped the shark long before t-shirts printed with it were being advertised in Rolling Stone.

Somebody needs to go all Courtney Love and throw a mic stand at the next jerkwad who yells that...

At 8/16/2006 2:23 PM, Blogger mdhatter said...

If ANY of you are capable of making it to the Frank Black show, I highly recommend it as an experience.

Death to the Pixies!

At 8/16/2006 3:23 PM, Blogger dontEATnachos said...

He was was actually not that great opening for Foo Fighters. I mean, he's good (and there's the one song of his I know) but his voice was obviously kind of tired. The worst was when he ended his whole set with a bad a cappella segment that was out of key.

Of course, you never get somebody's best show if they're just an opening act so maybe his other stuff is better.


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