Fleet Foxes – September 14, 2017 – Paramount, Seattle

Way back in the golden days of my youth when I was working as a production assistant in Hollywood, I first heard Fleet Foxes and fell in love with them.  I knew and loved every song off their first album.  At the time I was broke and honestly, although I loved playing music, I wasn’t much of a show goer so I never really made it out of my way to see them live, they’d always kind of been a “on the speakers” band, not a live thing.

In September I got my chance to see them at the Paramount and I was super excited.  I felt it would be the perfect time to hear their harmonies and instrumentation and was excited to zone out to their medieval-esque music.

I’ll go ahead and summarize the show because honestly, it’s been a couple months, and even more importantly, it just wasn’t that exciting of a show.  I got to hear some favorites. White Winter Hymnal he said was about Enumclaw which I thought was crazy.  Enumclaw is a little offshoot town kind of nestled in the mountains and hills outside of Seattle. It’s also famous for the worst reason ever but I’ll let you do the research on that one.

Other than that I got to hear some other favorites off the first album, namely Mykonos and Ragged Wood, which were by and large highlights for me.  I will say though, and I didn’t predict this, but I got bored. Everything blurred together and sounded the same.  There was no diversity, it was like going to a bar full of people who don’t drink, or eating the same meal for 2 weeks straight. It just got old.

That being said the sound was good, and the harmonies were great, it just wasn’t my thing.  Was it worth the money? Yea I suppose.  But I dunno, I can’t help but think there’s some great potential for an amazing live show and I just don’t feel theres anything there to warrant it being one of the memorable shows of 2017.

Here’s a video of one o my favorite songs by them, Ragged Wood.

Kings of Leon at the Gorge – August 26th, 2017

Kings of Leon is my favorite band period.  Yeah, yeah give me flak for it because they “sold out” or because of their bro-jams “Sex on Fire” and “Use Somebody”, I don’t care.  I’m sticking to the fact that Aha Shake Heartbreak is my favorite album.  Youth and Young Manhood is a close second.  Those two albums sum up great rock and roll to me. A good mix of everything and honestly what I try to shoot for in my own music.

Anywho, back to the show. You can imagine how excited I was to hear about it. I bought tickets immediately months and months before hand as well as a camping spot.  If I had to I would have made the 2 hour trip alone to see them, but luckily I didn’t have to. Had an amazing group of people come with which made the experience that much more of a good time.

The first night only Jake came up with me and we quickly made friends with our neighbors. We spent the night drinking and called it kind of early, went on to sleep to wake up to the blistering heat that is the gorge.  Not going to bore you too much longer with what we did the next day.  Same ole same ole, lots of drinking, and playing ladder ball.  This time I made sure to wear plenty of sunscreen so no lobster skin for me.

Finally, on to the point of this whole post, we made it to the show.  I was feeling very good to say the least and this time we were able to make it to some good seats towards the middle of the stage.  Granted we were in the grass, but it was still better than being towards the side of the stage.

The strangest part of this show was how they started of the entire thing with their song “conversation piece”.  While I do love all of their songs, this is definitely one of my least favorite.  It has such a slow pace, and its very simple. I will admit it gave the start to the show a relaxed feel though, kind of a calm before the storm feel.

After the slow start, the show turned into the best one I’ve seen there.  I know every song by heart so naturally I was into everything they played.  It helped being there too with friends who loved all the tunes.  The drinks kept coming and we kept dancing. I feel bad for people who had to look at my bodacious dance moves, but hey theme the breaks.

To sum up their show for someone who hasn’t seen them I do think it’s worth it.  There’s not much to their stage antics, but their instrumentation and vocals are flawless.  They’re hugely successful now so they have amazing lights and video.  As for improv, there wasn’t much (nor was there much last time) but there were slight variations to solos that I appreciated.

I was also worried going into this that it would be mostly new material. that wasn’t the case they played a handful of songs from every album which was great.  Honestly pretty much a timeline of my life in music which I think is why this concert meant so much to me.  I can only hope I get to see them come through again soon.

Normally I post a Spotify song or youtube video to one of the “official” songs but in this case I’m going to post a live video taken at the gorge.  On this video in particular they’re playing on of my favorites “Fans”.

Enjoy!

 

Tom Petty – Safeco Field – August 19th, 2017

I had postponed writing this for so long because I really just didn’t know how to reflect to myself and especially to other people about the concert.  This was my second time seeing Tom Petty and it may or may not be as good as the first time I’d seen him.  He played almost all his hits this time whereas previously he played a lot of new ones off his Hypnotic Eye album. The previous time was at the Gorge as well which was amazing in itself.  However, I think seeing any Tom Petty concert is just a Next Level experience thats hard to explain.  I hate to use some hippy rhetoric, but the “vibes” are always “woke”.  Everyones so carefree and happy. It’s just an amazing experience that unfortunately I’ll never get to experience again.

I want to deal with his passing in another post so for this one I’m just going to focus on the show itself.

This is my first concert that I’ve seen at Safeco and I’ll be honest, once I was in my seat it was cool, but JESUS it was a nightmare getting inside.  Lines around the block.  And this was after I waited and waited since I had no interest in seeing the Lumineers.  I’ve heard since that the staff or the “venue” as it were has fixed the problem, and I hope so because the only downside to the whole show was getting in.

Once I was in my seat had a great view of Seattle and kinda looked down at Stage Left.  I’ll be honest I’m not sure I can even give this show review justice as I can’t really recall or put into words the songs I heard.  The songs were all the hits you’ve heard on the radio. Refugee, Runnin Down a Dream, Free Fallin, and an encore with American Girl. Lots of others as well. Yer so Bad is a personal favorite of mine so I was happy he played that.

After a few songs in my seat I made my way over to Alyssa’s side which looked down on stage right.  Tom was in such a good mood and seemed spry and happy.  He kept stage banter to a minimum for the most part and the songs were played with enthusiasm and lots of smiling by all the heartbreakers.  Everyone seemed happy to be there and this reverts back to the “good vibes” I was talking about earlier.

There was one part of the show where there was some audio issues on a song to where no one in the audience could hear anything.  Afterwards in typical tom petty fashion he just laughed it off and said they’ll be back in a few with his signature nasally voice.  No one seemed angry and the sound was fixed and the concert was going with minimal delay.

All in all it was great experience. I certainly wish I had drank a little bit less so I could seal the memories in my mind better.  As for now I’m left with a haze of the show and the good time I had. Such an awesome show, I only wish I had many more of his  concerts to see in my lifetime! RIP Tom Petty.

Here’s one of my favorites of Tom Petty’s I heard at the Gorge the first time I saw him:

 

 

Young the Giant with Cold War Kids – Wamu Theater – August 11, 2017

Wow, I’m so behind on updating this website it’s embarrassing. Especially once you consider the money I poured into starting this up.  I reallllly need to get better at this.  Too bad with each blog post I’m not rewarded with a Montucky Cold Snack, or concert tickets…. Then I would be writing all the time!

Anyways, this is the second concert me and Alyssa went too.  I actually wasn’t looking too forward to it. I mean I like one song from Cold War Kids and like 2 songs from Young the Giant, but I hit the concert scene HARD this year and I just….it just took a lot of effort to get the energy together to go out to this one.

We showed up like 30 minutes past doors and had already missed the opener…who I believe was Joywave.  I wasn’t too worried about missing them.  And it was only like 7:30 sooo super early anyways.

The concert was at Wamu theater which is right next to the Century Link Ampitheater in Seattle.  It’s where the Seahawks play, duh.  Anyways, this building is absolutely humongous.  It just…dwarfs everything.  The whole concert took up a small portion of the whole building.  Me and Alyssa headed to the beer garden area and paid like 10 bucks a pop for those crappy aluminum bottles of bud light.  After the wait and everything Cold War Kids hit the stage, ohhh yea.

For their portion we just watched from the beer garden but it was really good.  I didn’t realize the front guy was so talented as far as singing and just all around musicianship. Probably my favorite part of the show was when he’d hop on the piano and tear it up.  They played the song I knew “Hang Me out to Dry” as well as their obvious radio hit “First”.   It was a good time.  I mean, nothing blew me out of the water but I enjoyed it.

After their set we went back and grabbed another beer.  Chugged that down and Alyssa talked me into moving my lazy ass up towards the stage for Young the Giant. So glad I’m did!

Young the Giant blew me out of the water more-so than any band in my recent memory. By blew me out of the water I specifically mean going into a concert with my hopes low and immediately being completely astounded at the talent.  Right from the get go I was just amazed at how good Sameer Gadhia’s voice is.  Absolutely insane.

Their stage presence was literally the best I’ve seen.  All members worked the stage like a 5,000 dollar stripper. I mean they were all over the place.  They all had cool Beatles-esque outfits on and cool props littering the stage that included a sunflower on the guitar and some hippyish scenery. The background was some amazing hypnotic video effects that matched up to the mood of the music.

The music was just upbeat and made me an instant fan. I had went in only knowing a couple songs such as “My Body” and “Cough Syrup”. I left becoming a fan of their whole new album.  My favorite part of the show was after all the upbeat-ness, they slowed it down and came forward to the front of the stage to play few songs acoustic-y and coffee shop-y.  It was really neat and truly made for an experience. it was much more than just hearing the songs you know, it made you feel like you got your money’s worth.

Anyways, I’m rarely this surprised and I would highly recommend catching them if they come through your town. I have a feeling that they are going to blow up to astronomical levels in the next couple of years.  Lets hope they don’t get bored and lets hope their shows continue to be as exciting!

 

 

Royal Blood – Showbox Market – August 9th

Originally this was another Cody/Jake Must See Show of 2017.  Then he snuck off to Mexico for a week…. but luckily sold me his ticket. This show was sold out after all so if he hadn’t done that, I would have beat him with lead pipes in pillow cushions.

Anyways, luckily I was able to bring this foxy little thing I just met, Alyssa, and she decided to give me (and Royal Blood) a chance.  We met up with Collin and his girlfriend straight away at the bar and settled in to see the show.  Alyssa had never heard of Royal Blood so I was excited to see what she thought of them.

To kick things off was a relatively unheard of band, Welles.  I can’t find too much about them other than some flashy social media and Beatles inspired photographs. Seems like everyone’s going the psych-beatles route nowadays.

I was able to discern from an article that the band is named after the lead singer’s last name (Jehsea Wells) and that he’s originally from Arkansas. He then moved to Nashville and I’m assuming got himself some bandmates, booking agents, record labels, promotion companies, and whoever else could have possibly got them as an opening act for Royal Blood.

Anyways, although I am tired of seeing the same hipster approach to hitting it big, I did enjoy the concert.  They rocked hard although nothing that stuck in my head too much.  Their performance seemed restrained but the music did grab my attention from my focus of drinking and carousing around with my friends. Nothing special, but nothing terrible. I would seriously be curious to get the full story on how this band with 1000 likes on Facebook was able to open up for one of the biggest rock bands out right now…Guess I’ll have to wait on that at this point.

After their show Collin and I went out for a smoke and grabbed a few more brewskis. Collin was pretty smashed but having a blast. We were all super excited for the show. This was his second time seeing them but my first. I was extremely skeptical they could pull of their signature 2-piece sound live without help from other musicians on stage but was soon to be proved very wrong.

Royal Blood hit the stage and wow…sounded exactly like the album. I can’t recall the exact setlist but they played mostly songs I knew.  I’m still not too familiar with the new album but I can tell you that every song was rocking’.  Multiple times I was caught playing air guitar and making a complete fool of myself in front of Alyssa.  We were all dancing around and singing the songs we knew.

My favorite songs I heard were Come on Over and Out of the Black.  Out of the Black came out a few years ago and it was the first song I’d heard in years that I felt could do a fair chance of bringing back real rock and roll. I mean hell, Jimmie Page vouches for them?! What’s more rocking than that. Although I’m still waiting on hard rock to make a come-back, they’ve definitely done the world a great service with that song and that album.

I’m still completely amazed they were able to get the tones they do as a two piece, and I wish I knew the “magic” behind what pedals he’s using. Alyssa, who’s unfamiliar with pedals, guitars, amps, and all that jazz, was just as amazed it was two people up there and as of this writing she’s added a few of their songs to her playlist.  I’d say that’s a big win for any live show.

As for their performance, it was straight forward. No flashy screens or crazy effects. No explosions or bikers stabbing people.  I think that it just goes to speak volumes for their actual music.  They don’t need all the “fluff”.  People come to their show to rock out, and they deliver.

Anywhooooo….I’ll post some links to my favorite songs of both bands below and you can check ’em out. Keep on rockin’ in the free world.

 

Eagles of Death Metal w/ The Melvins – July 13th – Showbox

This was another Cody and Jake must see show of 2017.  We had looked forward to this one for a long time as we both have never seen the Melvins and we both have man crushes on Eagles of Death metal. We also suckered my roommate Shay into going. He didn’t have a ticket but with Jake’s shiesty shenanigans we knew we could get him one.

We headed down early to grab some brewskis at pike place brewery and then the scalawag Jake made his way to the streets to give whatever he had to give to get a ticket to the show for Shay.  After 6’5″ Jake told a 5’6″ scalper “Do you want your kids to eat tonight?!” He was able to secure a ticket for a little more than face value.

We made our way in and Melvins came on pretty soon afterwards.  I’m not a huge fan of the Melvins and honestly am not familiar with many of their tunes.  It’s definitely way different and super technical, and that’s what made it fun for me.

King Buzzo, the singer of course, was a blast to watch. He’s got crazy sideshow bob hair and with the light bouncing off it, it was simply crazy to watch.  Add that to the crazy electric guitar and insane stops and starts of the rhythm and it was hard to look away.  They definitely know how to put on a show.

On a separate note, I’ve always admired the Melvins for never trying to fit a mold and always making the music they want to make.  When asked how they’ve remained a band for so long (30+ years), King Buzzo told the interviewer “Never write a hit song”. Pretty awesome…and legit as hell.

To cap their act off, I can definitely tell you with a couple play throughs of these songs you are bound to love them. Well…that is if you have my exact same music taste. My personal favorite is Honey Bucket so if you’re wanting to give them a listen, and you love hard rock, start off with this one!

After the Melvins it was time for EODM. This is my 3rd time seeing Eagles of Death Metal and the second time I’ve seen them in 2017 (1st time this year was before I started this blog…and was with Mastodon).

I’ve just gotta say that most people unfortunately know them because of the terrible Paris tragedy.  This is a band that’s overcame that and gone to do the damn thing. Jesse Hughes, who goes by Boots Electric, is one hell of a front man.  He just goes out there and doesn’t give a single fuck.  This particular show he came out rocking a cape and to the song Magic by Pilot.

After that it was straight forward rock and roll.  Me and Jake were chilling back at the bar slamming beers and dancing up a storm. Basically, really putting off the vibes that we’re laid back fun dudes who love to have a good time. And obviously scaring off most who don’t know how to handle that.

Once we were real lubed up and fully into it we made our way to the front strategically…by jumping and bumping our way into the middle to form our very own mosh pit.  You know, at 28 years old, you really can tell how out of shape you are by how out of breath you get in a mosh pit.  I didn’t know if I was gonna die or orgasm, but I’d say by the end of it, it was a little bit of both.

I wish I could recall the exact setlist, but I can say I knew every single song they played with the set spanning all 4 albums.  I’d say my favorite song I heard was “Wannabe in LA”. Afterwards I left and met up with some people at the Chieftain in Capitol Hill to continue my night.  It was one for the record books.

Simply, the funnest show I’ve been to in a long time and the most fun I’ve had in 2017…so far.

Ryan Adams – The Paramount – June 28th

I’ve never been the biggest Ryan Adams fan.  That being said I do like a few of his songs a WHOLE lot.  These include “To Be Young”, “Stars Go Blue”, “New York, New York”, and a couple off of his new album “Prisoner” and “Do You Still Love Me”.

I didn’t know what to expect but my buddy Kyle bought me a ticket on pre-sale and for 45 bucks it seemed totally worth it.  The venue was Paramount which is an absolutely amazing venue.  Trust me, you smoke some weed or do some shrooms before you go and you’re gonna be staring at the ceiling wonder where the hell you are.  The architecture is so amazing you may think you’re in a Catholic Church.

One downside to the venue is the drinking situation.  You can only drink outside the concert hall.  This means your forced to make awkward talk with strangers while shoved together like cattle, or make awkward talk with your friends while shoved together.  That being said, drinks aren’t overly expensive (Here’s looking at you Moore Theater).

We came in the theater a bit earlier than I’m used to to get a good spot.  I was up towards the left of the stage.  Ryan Adams came out and kicked it off with “Do You Still Love Me?”.  Honestly I was immediately blown away.  For one he started with one of my favorite songs and for two the musicianship was out of this world.  The backdrop was killer and everyone was singing along.  After that badass song he went into “To Be Young”, so basically just a 10 out of 10 for getting the show going.

The next songs were all songs I knew, although I can’t remember the order exactly.  It was neat seeing it live because he’s one of the few acts that sounds better live.  He plays it different as well which I’ve always admired because if I wanted to hear it like it is off of the album, I’d just listen to the damn album.  One song that stick out to me is an amazing rendition of Prisoner.  It had a softer start than normal and then evolved into a straight up rocker with some killer guitar.

My favorite part of the show was when he completely improvised a new song in front of the huge crowd.  He was singing about if Bruce Springsteen sang his autobiography through the teleprompter.  It sounds confusing, and it is…but it was so good.  I’m going to attach a link to the video here for you to watch.  You gotta see this.  Moments like this are so memorable, and truly make Ryan Adams a must see live show.

After that awesome break it was back to more hits.  He ended the show with “Come Pick Me Up” which he apparently wrote in a closet at the Tractor Tavern in Seattle.  How cool is that?

Anyways thats my summary of the show.  I’ve had a great year of seeing shows, on top of many other great years, and this song will always stick out in my mind.  All in all a great experience, and it’s definitely made me much more of a fan.

Peace and Love and Ryan Adams.  Take Care!

 

Tool at the Gorge – June 17th

The anticipation for this show, for me personally, was unbelievable.  I had one of my best friends fly all the way in from New Jersey and on top of that I got a camping spot.  Tool is literally his favorite band and while not one of my top 10 favorite bands, they’re definitely top 100.  With how rare it is that they go on tour, I bought these tickets right when they went on sale.  I’m unfortunately unable to make his bachelor party so I figured buying tickets to this would halfway make up for it. We went up a day early, secured a spot, and let the pregaming begin.

Honestly, going to the Gorge is a must for any big music lover.  It’s consistently ranked one of the best music venues in the whole country and it’s honestly hard to take in as “real” when you first top the hill and look out at the canyon. The only venue in all of America I think can compare is Red Rocks in Colorado (which I WILL go to one day, its a bucket list thing).

Anyways back to the show, the vibes were great and everyone was thirsty.  We walked up the trail, probably about 2 miles maybe more, and were finally ready to witness Tool by 8pm.

The band that opened was called Crystal Method and it may have been one of my least favorite shows of all time.  It sounded like filler music, or music played when a bar is trying to get you to leave. I literally can’t think of anything good about the show other than it was a good excuse to go to the vendors and buy super expensive food and drinks.

After that mess, Tool finally took the stage.  In perfect Maynard form, he stood at the back of the stage.  We didn’t have the greatest seats in the house but they weren’t terrible.  we were to the right of the stage but the sound was phenomenal.  Maynard sounded so good that one of my drunk friends asked if it was a recording.

I was absolutely captivated by the lights, the back drop, and the visuals.  Seeing tool live is definitely a work of art.  I truly believe thats why he stands at the back of the stage.  To make the experience about the music and not about persona’s or the people making the music.

Here’s the Setlist:

The Grudge
Parabol
Parabola
Schism
Opiate
Aenema
Jambi
Third Eye
46&2
Intermission
Vicarious
Sweat
Stinkfist

If you’re a fan of rock music and If you get the opportunity, I strongly suggest you go out of your way to see them live. Truly a one of a kind act and an experience that will last the rest of your lifetime.  Here’s my favorite song by them:

 

My Goodness at The Crocodile – Seattle – 6/9/2017

This show was an awesome surprise. Earlier in 2017 I was going to so many shows, and lately I haven’t been to as many. This is largely in part due to me being broke which is largely in part due to me being an idiot with my money.    Anywhooo….Thursday night my buddy gave me the heads up on this show and I knew I couldn’t miss it. I love My Goodness, and I’d heard good things about the openers Smokey Brights so I bought a ticket.

The show began as all good shows do, plenty of pregaming (5 brewskie’s) and plenty of good friends (4 dudebuddies).  I unfortunately missed most of the set of the first band Year of Death because I was getting carried away drinking and carousing around out in the sidebar. I caught the last half of the last song and it sounded like goth synth-y 80’s music.  Like, the kind of vibe where you dress up in leather and swing glow sticks around. Or like the music you’d listen to if you were in the movie the Matrix. Or like if you had a dance party out in a graveyard. Thats the only portion I heard so I really can’t give a fair opinion. I was trying to look up some tunes of theirs to share but couldn’t find anything. So it goes….

After a smoke break and a beer Smokey Brights hit the stage.  I was blown away quite honestly. I’m a sucker for guitar and going into this show I just assumed this band was mainly keyboard driven. I was definitely wrong, they rocked out. The guitarist shredded on a few of the songs.  In addition to that all the members were talented and had something to add to each song.  Stage presence was really good and the production of the music was fantastic.  I really couldn’t help but nod my head and do my dad dance to most of the songs. They are definitely a professional band and have their shit together. I’ve been listening to their music even after the show so thats how you know its good.  You should check em out.

After another smoke break and another beer or two, My Goodness hit the stage. At this point I was felling REALLY good.  I had attempted to see them twice before but never made it all the way to actually see them.  Anyways, as expected they killed it plain and simple.  Production was off the charts and stage presence was great.  Everyone was rocking out and getting the crowd into it. I was excited to hear a few of the songs I really wanted to hear.  Elevators and Sweet Tooth being the ones I was most excited about.  It was great hearing all of the new ones too.  I wish there was a video of the killer dance moves I was breaking out at this point…or at least a video of peoples reactions to the drunk guy rocking out in front of them.

After their set, the crowd thinned out pretty quickly.  I was corralled into and uber and woke up in my own bed so I’d consider it a VERY successful night out.  Here’s some links to their songs on Spotify.  Pretty sure you’re gonna dig em!

LP at the Tractor Tavern – Seattle – May 12th, 2017

About a year ago, one of my good friends first showed me LP through a youtube video of her singing her hit “Lost on You.” I’m unable to pass up a terrible pun, so needless to say this track was not “lost” on me.

After maybe 30 seconds of listening I already had goosebumps.  Since then I’ve been a loyal listener, and when I saw LP tickets going on sale at the Tractor tavern for around 20 bucks I immediately snagged one.  It’s a good thing I did because it sold out almost immediately.  To cut to the chase, LP is undeniably one of the best singers I’ve ever heard and maybe one of the best singers ever. The fact it wasn’t sold out immediately and that I could even snag one is beyond me and quite frankly a tragedy of epic proportions.

Fast forward to show time…Some friends and I got an uber xl and hiked it all the way to Ballard from West Seattle. We were welcomed to a very packed house at the Tractor. I immediately headed to the bar and grabbed a cold Montucky (Light beers are beers too).  Service was great, not sure how with how many people were there.

We arrived just in time because the opener Josiah and the Bonnevilles went on after my first couple swigs. At first listen, I groaned thinking “Here we go, another Bob Dylan folk singer” but I was very surprised to find out that wasn’t the case.  Granted, he’s definitely all about acoustic guitar and harmonica, but he’s got his own style and his guitar playing is phenomenal.  The Bonnevilles also weren’t present, so it was just him up there. His songwriting is great and my friend Paige even tried to buy his CD.  Unfortunately they were 15 bucks so she made up her mind to just stream it. I know its always good to support when you can but 15 bucks is a little much. Thems the breaks I guess.

After Josiah, LP made us wait a good long while before she took the stage. I WAS PUMPED to finally hear her song “Muddy Waters” blare from the PA’s.  I unfortunately didn’t have the best spot in the house, I was between the bar and this huge pillar so I was constantly craning my neck.  She did a great job of working the stage and walking from one end to the other so everyone in the packed room could catch a glimpse of the show.

The rest of the show was honestly just a blur of me smiling at how amazing her voice is and when I thought she couldn’t top something vocally she ALWAYS proved me wrong.  The notes she can hit are absolutely insane.

She “ended” the night with “Lost on You” and the whole crowd went absolutely nuts.  After the song LP walked off the stage for maybe a minute, but because the crowd was so loud we definitely didn’t have to wait long for the encore which was another 2 songs.  You really just need to listen to her and find out for yourself.  Why are you even reading this… Use your first world Internet powers and click on a link to listen to both Josiah and LP now!  Do it!

 

LP – Lost On You

 

Josiah and the Bonnevilles – Cold Blood