Ramblings of a Redhead Music Snob

Life & Music in New York, My City

Archive for October, 2009

YOU LOVE US! – The Manic Street Preachers

Posted by xneverwherex on October 11, 2009

10/7/09 – The Manic Street Preachers/Bear Hands – Webster Hall

Its only been 10 years since the lovely Welsh boys were last here. I was lucky enough to have been able to see I did see them 10 years ago at Bimbo’s in San Francisco. But sadly, I couldnt remember much of the show – aside from remembering that they never play encores.

I got there early as I knew I had to be on the far right side of the stage. Thats where one Nicky Wire would be. And Nicky Wire is awesome to watch. Unfortunately, due to many people pushing and shoving there was no way in hell Id be anywhere close to him, so I went to the left side of the stage. And with their set up as it was, it felt like I was a mile away from the band.

Thankfully James Dean Bradfield likes to work the stage and was all over the place. Hes like a kid with bundled up energy, jumping all over the place and just really getting into the show. Nicky Wire has impressive scissor kicks and can jump insanely high. The lovely glittering eyeshadow that he was wearing was so fitting.

Their new album was from lyrics written by Richey Edwards. Their new songs sound quite great and Edwards always could come up with the most beautiful lyrics. Id love to believe that hes off in his own world living the perfect beautiful life. I figure one day Ill see him in South America.

They had a great choice in songs and opened with Motorcycle  Emptiness. Perfect song to get things going to. Their set had music from all of their albums and the 3some looked as great always (including 2 other people who were on tour with them – a guitarist from Boy Kill Boy?? or Big Country? Im so not sure). It would have been awesome if they had a female vocalist on Little Baby Nothing and Your Love Alone is Not Enough. I so hoped that Nina Persson just might show up. (sadly, she did not).

They promised they’d be back in 2 years and I hope thats not the case. Biggest weakness was the vocals seemed too low. And Id have loved to have had Nicky Wire come close at least a few times.

And Im quite sure They do love us!

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The Irish Bring the Rock!

Posted by xneverwherex on October 11, 2009

9/29/09

U2/Muse – FedEx Field – Washington, DC (actually Maryland)

Hard to believe, but I had never seen U2 before. I dont know what was with my hang-up about not seeing them, but I just never did. But my days of being a U2 virgin are long gone and I couldnt be happier about that.

Basically, U2 BLEW MY MIND AWAY! Im pretty sure that not many concerts (in my lifetime) will live up to this. Its hard to see something this magnaminous as most bands couldnt even afford a set costing this much. A couple hundreds of millions of dollars??!! The set itself is just sick. It looks nearly like a spaceship and has all these bridges that come down on different parts of the stage. Dubbed the 360 tour its literally in 360 and theres not a bad spot in the house. Well there probably is, but considering we were in the more front area and Bono and The Edge were coming down a lot by us, it was surreal.

The set was amazing! Consisting of pretty much songs from all their different albums and plenty from the new, it was hard to leave disappointed. Sure they didnt play “Pride” and sure theres a ton of stuff that Id have loved to have heard, but from what I did hear — I LOVED IT! Sunday Bloody Sunday – Impressive!, Uno Dos Tres Catorce – the opening lines to Vertigo was just awesome. Beautiful Day – oh yeah! Basically, it was hard to go wrong with their set.

Bono was as chatty as ever and more political than probably at most shows. But it was WDC and it was to be expected. He had foreign dignitaries there as well as some of the Hill people, but it was fine with me. He’s done a lot for Africa and wants to make the world a better place. Its hard for me to find fault with what he does  – granted Im one of those bleeding heart liberals.

The real highlight was Bono within fingertips from me. I could have never imagined I’d be so close to him. The Edge is just brilliant live and cant forget Larry either – him walking down a walk way playing the bongos – yeah brilliance again! And of course Adam Clayton. All in all – the band is just brilliant and hopefully will continue to play on through the years.

And if you havent yet seen “It Might Get Loud” seriously – go out and see it now! I have to say from seeing Edge on the big screen to seeing him live a few hours later was really surreal.

The Muse opened. And yes, I know thats not t heir name, but as Bono now calls them that, it seems fitting. They played their big indie prog rock songs that just seemed to go on and on. Each song seeming bigger and more grandiose than the prior song. It was pretty much a best of set list and so I knew most of the songs. Matt Bellamy is beyond talented and theres no denying that they could be huge, but Ill take my U2 any day!

the space ship set –

oh yeah –  Bono this close to me – so made the show something else

U2

Main Set

  1. Breathe
  2. Magnificent
  3. Get On Your Boots
  4. Mysterious Ways
  5. I Still Havent Found What I’m Looking For/Stand By Me (snippet)
  6. Elevation
  7. Your Blue Room
  8. Beautiful Day/Blackbird (snippet)
  9. New Years Day
  10. Stuck In A Moment You Can’t Get Out Of (Acoustic)
  11. The Unforgettable Fire/Mofo (snippet)
  12. City of Blinding Lights
  13. Vertigo/Let’s Dance (snippet)
  14. Ill Go Crazy if I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight/Dont Stop Till You Get Enough (snippet)
  15. Sunday Bloody Sunday
  16. MLK
  17. Walk On

Encore 1

  1. One/Amazing Grace (snippet)
  2. Where The Streets Have No Name

Encore 2

  1. Ultra Violet (Light My Way)
  2. With Or Without You
  3. Moment of Surrender

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Oh those lovely Parisians

Posted by xneverwherex on October 11, 2009

So — in the past 2 weeks Ive seen a _ton_ of shows.  So lets start – a show at a time for the past 2 weeks. Or I should say – the shows that stood out.

Fri – Sept 25 – Phoenix & Passion Pit @ Central Park (Summerstage)

So, I was lucky enough to get into the show since it was sold out. But I volunteered for Summerstage, so I had an easy in. Of course, it really meant that I was working at the show. So I got there early and got to hear Passion Pit doing their soundcheck. They were already sounding great. A quick text to Andrew (one of the guys who works for them, and is also a friend of mine) to let him know how it sounded.

I was assigned to the ‘mobility -impaired’ section as its now called which is right in the front of the stage area on the right hand side. Great spot with a great view and also right next to the VIP section.

Passion Pit played a good set. I cant say I had the same feeling after seeing them in Chicago, but they were enjoyable. But Im a big believer in the fact that they need to just play their faster/upbeat stuff in concert, as their slower stuff doesnt translate as well. And honestly, I can only take so much falsetto. But their catchy songs do work live and the crowd was really living it up.

Phoenix would come on next. And me, being totally forgetful, couldnt understand why my friends were getting all excited. And behind me was Simon Pegg, Kirsten Dunst and Sophia Coppola (wife of Thomas Mars – lead singer of Phoenix). How on earth I didnt think for 2 secs she might show up, I dont know. But sure enough they were all there leaning up against the same fence I was. They seemed friendly enough, but you could tell they did not want to be bothered. And Simon nearly had to jump in and help me do security and get some guys out of the area.

Anyway, after all my celebrity gawking, Phoenix finally hit the stage. And the boys from France never disappoint. Their new stuff sounds great live and starting off with Lisztomania is a great choice getting the crowd really involved in their show. They played stuff from each of their albums, and it was really great to be hearing ‘Funky Squaredance’, although for all I know they play it at all of their shows. But its always a great song – Im just amazed how many people dont know it. Their encore had some of their other hits with Everything is Everything and If I Ever Feel Better. Thomas even did some songs by himself which was a nice change. Overall, they sounded great and what an awesome way to end the summer. Out in the park with gorgeous weather and the boys of Phoenix.

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