Enough with the live in the moment crap, thoughOriginally published by DK on June 13, 2018 at 10:54 pm
https://www.rollingstone.com/music/live-reviews/live-review-beyonce-jay-zs-on-the-run-ii-tour-kickoff-w521177Originally published by DK on June 7, 2018 at 11:00 am
Now that we’ve lost Prince, Bowie and Petty, David Byrne is one of the last living links to my favorite music growing up. Never got to see Talking Heads perform together, but I’ve seen Tom Tom Club once and Byrne solo a few times (does Jerry only produce now?). Looking back in the archive, I saw him at the State doing Brian Eno songs and at the Fitzgerald, along with the talk he gave at the History Theater when How Music Works came out. Last Friday I added another show at the Orpheum, where he did two nights with his new critically acclaimed production (see Bream, Current and City Pages reviews).
Must admit I had a few strikes against this show before it began. First, I had already seen most of it during the Cochella live feeds last month. Second, I had read a review somewhere (that I can’t find now) that said this production blew away Stop Making Sense. Those are fighting words to me – Demme and Bernie Worrell (RIP), Chris, Tina and Jerry, the big suit – nothing will ever top that in my mind. Lastly, I walked in to the theater early and an usher directed me to the wrong section. Instead of a great center seat in row seven, I was in the farthest seat over to the side and couldn’t see all of the stage. On top of all that, my co-worker had seen the Thursday show and said the opening act was the worst thing he’d ever seen. With all that in mind, let’s get this show started, shall we?
My friend DGS told me the opener was Benjamin Clementine and that his daughter was excited to see him because he was featured on the Gorillaz song Hallelujah Money from their last album. He also said it was “an odd set.” I did a little research and saw that the New York Times named him one of 2016’s 28 creative geniuses and that he won the 2015 Mercury Prize, which is given out for best album from the United Kingdom and Ireland. Most importantly, David Byrne himself wrote a story for the New York Times about him in 2016 that you can read here. Yes, parts of his set were odd. His piano playing and voice, though, were pretty damn cool. And anyone who tells rube hecklers to fuck off is A-OK in my book.
It seems like this tour doesn’t change much up from show to show, so the setlist that the Current posted from the Thursday show (edited below) seemed almost exactly the same as what we got on Friday (and very similar to Coachella). It was heavy on the American Utopia content and traditional Talking Heads songs, but very little old solo stuff (just like the other shows I’ve seen). I was really happy to hear The Great Curve and Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On), neither of which I think I’ve heard live. The new songs are growing on me, but each one caused everyone to sit back down again (which I guess is the norm for everyone).
A few other notes: dancer/singer Chris Giarmo kinda freaked me out when I first saw him on the Coachella feed, but I thought he was great in person. The choreography in general was amazing – so many people going in so many directions, yet no one crashed (that I saw). The lighting and chain backdrop was cool (but still no Stop Making Sense in my mind). Liked the support of HeadCount and the addition of the (Janelle Monae approved) Philando Castile line to Hell You Talmbout to close out the show.
Here’s to hoping we get at least one more Twin Cities show down the road…
- I Zimbra
- Slippery People
- I Should Watch TV
- Dog’s Mind
- Everybody’s Coming to My House
- This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody)
- Once in a Lifetime
- Doing the Right Thing
- Toe Jam
- Born Under Punches (The Heat Goes On)
- I Dance Like This
- Every Day is a Miracle
- Like Humans Do
- Burning Down the House
- Encore 1
- Dancing Together
- The Great Curve
- Encore 2
- Hell You Talmbout
Sam and Steve @ Palace Theater, Saint PaulOriginally published by DK on May 16, 2018 at 11:02 pm
The Bill Murray was right up my alleyOriginally published by DK on April 21, 2018 at 10:03 pm
Cloud Cult with the Minnesota OrchestraOriginally published by DK on April 7, 2018 at 7:43 pm
It’s still standing…Originally published by DK on February 11, 2018 at 7:58 pm
JT, you forgot your signOriginally published by DK on February 8, 2018 at 2:46 pm
I don’t know, I thought the halftime show was pretty goodOriginally published by DK on February 5, 2018 at 2:54 am
Another excellent concert Via ChicagoOriginally published by DK on November 16, 2017 at 12:27 am
Originally published by DK on November 15, 2017 at 11:41 pm
Good food and good musicOriginally published by DK on November 14, 2017 at 7:37 pm
MK and EW @ Macklemore, PalaceOriginally published by DK on November 2, 2017 at 7:10 pm
Anxious to see if the new place lives up to the hype (plus the Pixies)Originally published by DK on October 11, 2017 at 7:02 pm
http://davidbyrne.com/journal/the-secret-place-where-music-shows-get-madeOriginally published by DK on October 10, 2017 at 1:42 pm
Petty and Nicks @ Hyde ParkOriginally published by DK on October 5, 2017 at 10:41 pm
http://www.billboard.com/articles/news/7686186/tom-petty-heartbreakers-all-star-tribute-musicares-grammy-awards-recording-academyOriginally published by DK on October 3, 2017 at 10:30 am
Cold (but nice) new off-season event at the fairgroundsOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2017 at 9:21 pm
Sitting on the Klas bench at the State Fair Rummage eventOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2017 at 8:06 pm
AwesomeOriginally published by DK on September 20, 2017 at 8:01 pm
So much powerOriginally published by DK on September 9, 2017 at 4:09 pm
This totally made my dayOriginally published by DK on August 13, 2017 at 5:14 pm
Hazelfest 2017Originally published by DK on August 5, 2017 at 2:11 pm
Lightning is rightOriginally published by DK on July 30, 2017 at 11:15 pm
When am I gonna take control, get a hold of my emotions? Why does it only seem to hit me in the middle of the night?Originally published by DK on July 29, 2017 at 4:16 pm
Dilly Bars, FTW @ Billy JoelOriginally published by DK on July 28, 2017 at 8:12 pm
Here’s one from back in March (the 25th, to be exact), when we headed over to the Cedar Cultural Center to see The Twilight Hours. We’ve been big fans of Matt Wilson and John Munson in all of their various projects and try to catch them when we can. They will be playing down the block at Music in Mears this Thursday, which reminded me I never posted pictures from the Cedar show (pics after the jump).
The Counterfactuals and Fathom Lane opened the show, but we were really there to hear songs off The Twilight Hours new album, Black Beauty. I think they played all but two of the new songs, which was nice to experience for the first time. Not much else to say, other than to highly recommend you make your way down to Mears Park this week for a free sample of this great band.
Big River Pizza is cool (#2)Originally published by DK on July 24, 2017 at 10:36 pm
It seems like forever ago already, but one of the highlights of our Vegas trip last month was a private concert by Bruno Mars at the new T-Mobile Arena that the Golden Knights will call home. The Cisco Live! conference had around 28,000 attendees and most of them tried to squeeze into the arena for the roughly 80 minute set (with no opener and no encore).
We had passes to get in early and were herded to the upper level concourse for free food and drinks. Before the full doors opened, we worked our way down to the arena floor and I got a spot on the end of the front barrier. Bruno and his crew spent more time in the middle of the stage, but it was still a great spot to watch them up close. Conference organizers handed out free hats with flashing lights, so the place was really more electric than it would normally be with a bunch of nerds.
Kid two was more than a little salty that 1) I got to see him first and 2) that I was that close (when Bruno came to my side of the stage, he was literally about four feet away). Ended up taking way more video than usual, just so she could experience it too. No merch for sale and I didn’t get a set list, but it was pretty much what you’d expect. My favorites were the big hits: That’s What I Like, 24K Magic, Just the Way You Are and (of course) Uptown Funk.
Amazing performer, great show (more pics after the jump).
The side of the stage had perksOriginally published by DK on July 21, 2017 at 11:03 pm
Closed it out rightOriginally published by DK on July 16, 2017 at 8:05 pm
Some areas were really nice, but navigation was a bit troublesomeOriginally published by DK on June 29, 2017 at 12:59 pm
JazzFest time in LowertownOriginally published by DK on June 22, 2017 at 6:51 pm
Wonderful tribute show by the amazing Seu JorgeOriginally published by DK on June 17, 2017 at 11:23 pm
Happy to have this one at my officeOriginally published by DK on June 8, 2017 at 7:42 pm
MK with the Abba to close out her high school choir career (and she lettered!)Originally published by DK on May 31, 2017 at 7:02 pm
Music at the Zoo is such a great series (and venue). Sue McLean and Associates does a great job booking every year, (usually) keeping prices reasonable for a wide variety of acts to choose from each summer. Last year, the Jayhawks made their Zoo debut on July 1 with a great show that I would’ve missed if not for my friend DGS and his extra ticket.
I don’t remember too many specifics now, so I’ll send you over to Jon Bream’s review at the Star Tribune. I do remember the quirky openers Folk Uke, who sang some great R-rated songs: Shit Makes The Flowers Grow, BJ to a DJ and Motherfucker Got Fucked Up. A few more pics after the jump. You can view the 2017 lineup here (we are going to Robert Cray on July 12).
With my big black boots and an old suitcase, I do believe I’ll find myself a new place…Originally published by DK on May 27, 2017 at 9:54 am
MK playing baritone over on the rightOriginally published by DK on May 26, 2017 at 11:18 am
My job took me to Phoenix for the Final Four college basketball tournament this year (in anticipation of our stadium hosting in 2019), where I learned a lot about the preparation and logistics needed to put on this major event. With the first two semifinal games on Saturday and the finals on Monday night, I was able to sneak away on Sunday, April 1, to attend the Capital One JamFest.
The NCAA puts on a series of concerts over the weekend each year, but this was the only day I could go to the Arizona edition. This turned out great, as that day had the lineup I most wanted to see:
- Nathaniel Rateliff & the Night Sweats
- Blink 182
- Macklemore & Ryan Lewis
I’ve seen the Night Sweats and Macklemore before, but Aerosmith was on my bucket list (I think Blink 182 skipped my generation – don’t think I knew any of their songs, to be honest). Leon Bridges played the night before and made a quick cameo with Nathaniel Rateliff during S.O.B., which was cool (I’ve seen Leon a few times, but was still sad his set was during the semifinal games).
The local paper has a summary of the day here, which was highlighted by massive crowd control issues at Margaret T. Hance Park. Thankfully my NCAA credential got me in, because there was no way the police were letting in more than 20,000 people. I got there just as Night Sweats took the stage, positioning myself in front of the sound board and large lighting tower. I ended up getting pushed up farther and farther with each act, which included my first close-up encounter with a real mosh pit during the Blink set (waaaaay too intense for my tastes).
The concerts went on for seven and a half hours, which meant I nearly passed out from dehydration by the end. In hindsight, I was glad that I didn’t give up my spot, as watching Steven Tyler from about 15 feet away singing Dream On was a lifetime concert highlight for me (pictures after the jump). The openers sounded great, Blink was almost as energetic as their fan base, Macklemore put on a high-quality set reminiscent of his Minnesota State Fair show, while the Bad Boys of Boston really lived up to my high expectations (hard to believe those guys are all nearly 70).
Charles Barkley and Jim Nantz also made an appearance in between sets, along with about ten million Capital One promotions…
Frankie and Friends (plus dinner) – first time here on the green lineOriginally published by DK on May 4, 2017 at 8:43 pm
Digging back into the concert archive from last year, I was extremely happy to finally cross Garbage off the bucket list on July 7, 2016, at the Skyway Theater in downtown Minneapolis. As a graduate of UW-Madison, it always seemed like a fail that I had never seen them live before. And then to have the show at a venue I had never been to before was a double bonus.
The Skyway (capacity just under 2,000) was…interesting. Definitely one of the louder spots in town, we could literally feel the entire building shake when we walked under it from the old Dayton’s parking lot. We never did see it with the house lights up, so I’m not entirely sure how it was set up. I also didn’t go upstairs into the balcony, but Colleen said it had concrete rows to sit on (with no actual seats).
I’ve had a crush on Shirley Manson ever since I heard her on a radio interview way back in the day (that I can now barely remember). The Scottish lead singer thing always seemed like a weird combination for a band from Madison, but it’s worked out well for them. Manson is now 50 (49 when she played this show), but still had huge stage presence and boundless energy. Her vocals sounded wonderful and she honestly seemed happy to be back in Minneapolis. I hadn’t had much of a chance to listen to their new (at the time) album Strange Little Birds before the show, but it’s really grown on me since.
The other reason I was really excited to finally see Garbage was Butch Vig. Unfortunately, the 61-year-old drummer and producer was ill and recovering back in LA (according to Shirley). In addition to playing with Garbage, he’s produced albums for a who’s who of my iTunes library: Nirvana, Smashing Pumpkins, Green Day, Foo Fighters and Muse (among others). The replacement drummer was fine, but if they ever come back again, I’ll go again to try and see Butch.
As for the actual show, here are a couple of reviews I found. Great to hear both the new songs and classics like Only Happy When It Rains, Why Do You Love Me and Sex Is Not the Enemy. A set list from setlist.fm and a few pictures after the jump.
- I Think I’m Paranoid
- Stupid Girl
- Blood for Poppies
- The Trick Is to Keep Breathing
- My Lover’s Box
- Sex Is Not the Enemy
- A Stroke of Luck
- #1 Crush
- Battle in Me
- Automatic Systematic Habit
- Bleed Like Me
- Push It
- Only Happy When It Rains
- Cherry Lips (Go Baby Go!)
- Why Do You Love Me
- Even Though Our Love Is Doomed
I’ve run into my friend RW the past two days in a row, which reminded me of the Lauryn Hill concert at First Avenue last September (that I never wrote about). You can read Chris Riemenschneider’s review of the 9/4/2016 concert here, since this is all I really remember from that night:
- We loved the Fugees and were sad we hadn’t seen any of her other recent visits.
- It was the most money we’ve ever spent on a First Avenue ticket.
- We learned RW is a true First Ave VIP and got us one of the tables upstairs.
- Ms. Hill completely lives up to the diva reputation (and her band probably wanted to kill her by the end of the show).
That cover of Nothing Compares 2 U was amazing, though.
Not sure why all the pictures from this show were so terrible, but here you go…
24K @ the nerd conference this summerOriginally published by DK on April 20, 2017 at 4:14 pm
Summerfest in Milwaukee just announced their 2017 lineup, which continues their amazing run of awesome bookings. I still don’t fully understand how they can get such great acts year after year, while charging so little to get in. There must be some serious beer vendor underwriting going on – plus now they are stepping up the other corporate sponsorships to improve the grounds.
While the closing night this year features the outstanding Outlaw Music Festival (with Willie Nelson, Bob Dylan, Sheryl Crow, Jason Isbell, Nathaniel Rateliff and Margo Price), I don’t think we are going to go this year. Reviewing the daily lineups reminded me I never wrote about last year’s finale: Peter Gabriel and Sting on the Rock Paper Scissors tour.
The problem with me forgetting about these posts in the draft folder is that I have a really hard time remembering exactly what happened. Thankfully this Sunday night show from July 10, 2016 was covered by the local newspaper. They also included the setlist I included below (followed by some really bad shots from our waaaaay in the back seats).
After re-reading the review, I do remember that I was really concerned heading in to the show about Sting covering Peter Gabriel songs and vice versa. We’ve seen Sting a number of times, but had never seen Gabriel and didn’t want to get a “fake” cover show. In reality, the show was the best of both worlds and was one of my favorites all year. I don’t recall how much the tickets were, but I know they were expensive and that I intentionally bought seats farther back to limit cost.
The only other things I remember about this trip is that we stayed in the really nice new rooms at the Potawatomi Hotel and we took our first two Uber rides (which also turned out to be our last Uber rides). Didn’t play much at the casino – Milwaukee pricing is a little too rich for my taste. Oh yeah, also made a quick pit stop at the Gritty in Madison…
- The Rhythm of the Heat (PG)
- If I Ever Lose My Faith in You (Sting)
- Digging in the Dirt (PG and Sting)
- Invisible Sun (PG and Sting)
- Games Without Frontiers (PG and Sting)
- Shock the Monkey (PG and Sting)
- Secret World (PG)
- Driven to Tears (Sting)
- Fragile (PG and Sting)
- Red Rain (PG)
- Dancing with the Moonlit Knight (Sting)
- Message in a Bottle (PG and Sting)
- San Jacinto (PG)
- Walking in your Footsteps (Sting)
- Kiss That Frog (PG and Sting)
- Don’t Give Up (PG)
- The Hounds of Winter (Sting)
- Big Time (PG and Sting)
- Englishman in New York (PG and Sting)
- Solsbury Hill (PG and Sting)
- Every Little Thing She Does is Magic (Sting)
- If You Love Somebody Set Them Free (Gabriel)
- Roxanne (Sting)
- Love Can Heal (Gabriel)
- Desert Rose (Sting)
- In Your Eyes (PG and Sting)
- Every Breath You Take (PG and Sting)
- Sledgehammer (PG and Sting)
Psychedelic Furs and Robyn Hitchcock @ First AvenueOriginally published by DK on April 6, 2017 at 7:40 pm
Sing with me, just for today. Maybe tomorrow, the good lord will take you away…Originally published by DK on April 3, 2017 at 1:39 am
What a night in PhoenixOriginally published by DK on April 3, 2017 at 1:29 am
Catching an all-night station, somewhere in Louisiana. It sounds like 1963, but for now, it sounds like heaven…Originally published by DK on March 30, 2017 at 12:30 am
Son Volt @ First Ave with DGSOriginally published by DK on March 30, 2017 at 12:29 am
When my mom stopped to visit the loft earlier this week, we were talking about upcoming concerts and she mentioned that Dolly Parton is one of her favorites. That reminded me I never posted the pictures from the show last summer at Grand Casino Hinckley. The Pure and Simple Tour stopped for a Wednesday evening show in their outdoor amphitheater on July 20, 2016 and thanks to Hinckley’s amazing general manager Mel Towle, we got to sit front and center (seriously, Mel is one of the best people in the entire casino world).
Growing up, I probably knew Dolly more for the movie 9 to 5 than for her country music. I also thought it was cool that we shared a birthday (hello, Edgar Allan Poe). Seeing her perform live, it’s really hard to believe she is 70 (now 71). Gotta believe Dolly and Debbie Harry must have some sort of Secret 70 Club that prevents the effects of aging.
Don’t have a set list or much recollection of the show now – I just remember it was really sunny at the start and that she was quite the entertainer. I think we also waited in the parking lot afterwards for nearly as long as she played (guessing the Hinckley police force is not a fan of summer concert nights). Looking at set lists from other stops, she did hit all the big ones: Jolene, Islands in the Stream, 9 to 5, Coat of Many Colors and I Will Always Love You.
MK didn’t think so, but they sounded greatOriginally published by DK on March 14, 2017 at 6:56 am
Night two of a weekend sellout in MinneapolisOriginally published by DK on March 12, 2017 at 8:59 pm
Go, baritones, goOriginally published by DK on March 7, 2017 at 4:00 pm
When the sun comes out in January and the temperature gets above 10F, Minnesotans can be seen out and about without jackets. Days like these help us forget how good we have it in the summer when the Music in the Zoo season is in full force. We didn’t go to a ton of concerts during the 2016 run, but the Blondie show on June 11th was an overall music highlight of the year. This was another bucket list artist for me and I really had no idea that Deborah Harry was 70 years old (now 71).
As Jon Bream wrote in his (short) review, Debbie was joined by original Blondie members Chris Stein (guitar) and Clem Burke (drums), along with three other younger performers. Minneapolis band Step Rockets opened the show.
There were so many great songs from my youth: One Way or Another, Call Me, The Tide Is High and Heart of Glass were all wonderful. The highlight for me, however, was the version of Rapture that included a segue into Prince’s Kiss and (You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party) by the Beastie Boys.
- One Way or Another
- Hanging on the Telephone (The Nerves cover)
- Mile High
- Call Me
- What I Heard
- A Rose by Any Name
- Rapture (with “Kiss” by Prince and “(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)” by the Beastie Boys)
- The Tide Is High (The Paragons cover)
- Sugar on the Side
- Heart of Glass
- Hollywood Babylon (Misfits cover)
- Rip Her to Shreds
The Ryman had a pretty outstanding year, eh?
For all the loss we experienced in the music world in 2016, it was nice to attend a number of concerts by acts that I’ve had on my list for years. The Cure hadn’t played a Minnesota date in 20 years, so when their June 7th show at Xcel was announced, I really didn’t care how much it was – we were all going.
Turns out prices were reasonable, but for some reason it was only a half-house setup. I got tickets during the initial on-sale, but then the promoter did something I’ve never seen before: they pushed the stage back and switched it to a full arena layout (which made our seats worse). I ended up buying four new tickets and was able to refund the original purchase (but had to float the extra money for a few weeks).
Both Ross and Chris had nice write-ups of the show, which (just like Sir Paul) ran for nearly three hours and included 34 songs and *four* encores. Almost linked to the City Pages negative review, but decided not to after reading the comments (never read the comments).
Just about every show we saw after April 21 either mentioned Prince, dedicated a song to him or performed a cover. Mr. Smith was a little subtle – “The pressure of holding a purple guitar is really getting to me.” Speaking of Mr. Smith, I just couldn’t stop thinking about him versus Mecha-Streisand on South Park. And as Kyle says, “Disintegration is the best album ever.”
The show was a little too long for the kids on a Tuesday night, but I will never complain about that. They were also sad there was no Friday I’m in Love or The Lovecats, but we just hit a night those weren’t played (other tour stops did get those). Overall, I was very happy – particularly with hearing Pictures of You, Lovesong and Fascination Street. Great production quality and lighting too.
- A Night Like This
- The Walk
- Inbetween Days
- Just Like Heaven
- The Snakepit
- Pictures Of You
- The Perfect Girl
- The End Of The World
- Dressing Up
- Fascination Street
- From The Edge Of The Deep Green Sea
- One Hundred Years
- Encore 1:
- It Can Never Be The Same
- Shake Dog Shake
- Encore 2:
- If Only Tonight We Could Sleep
- Charlotte Sometimes
- A Forest
- Encore 3:
- Never Enough
- Wrong Number
- Encore 4:
- Hot Hot Hot !!!
- The Caterpillar
- Let’s Go To Bed
- Close To Me
- Why Can’t I Be You?
- Boys Don’t Cry
When Paul McCartney played Target Field in August 2014, I just couldn’t pull the trigger on expensive seats in an unknown venue (at least from an acoustics standpoint). Then the reviews came out and I was in serious regret mode. And as the last few years have shown, if you want to see someone in concert, do it when you have the chance.
Sir Paul may be getting up there (he turns 75 in June), but his concerts are still marathons (just like Bruce and Neil). When the One on One tour was announced, I cringed a bit when I saw Target Center listed. That venue has gotten much better over the years, but I still prefer Xcel (especially when the tickets are pricey). I pulled some strings to get the best tickets I could for the price category we wanted and ended up about ten rows up on the side (and not in the $250 section).
This show was everything I had hoped for – nearly three hours of non-stop classics from a true rock and roll superstar. Based on Ross Raihala’s review, it was very similar to what I missed at Target Field. Our May 4th concert was almost two weeks after Prince’s death, so the one noticeable change was the addition of Let’s Go Crazy to the encore (which was heartfelt, but didn’t follow the actual lyrics). Sounded like the May 5th show was a carbon copy of the night before, so I’m glad we didn’t try for both shows.
The production quality of this show was top-notch. The rising platform, background video boards, lighting and pyro were all incredible – I can still feel the heat from Live and Let Die in my mind. The only flaw in the production were the two boom cameras on each side of the stage that continuously blocked sightlines all night. Telephoto lenses, anyone? As a child of the 70s, I’d also take more Wings, but it’s hard to complain about 40 songs – especially when they include Let It Be, Hey Jude and Eleanor Rigby.
- A Hard Day’s Night
- Save Us
- Can’t Buy Me Love
- Letting Go
- Temporary Secretary
- Let Me Roll It
- Foxy Lady (Hendrix)
- I’ve Got a Feeling
- My Valentine
- Nineteen Hundred and Eighty-Five
- Here, There and Everywhere
- Maybe I’m Amazed
- We Can Work It Out
- In Spite of All the Danger (Quarrymen)
- You Won’t See Me
- Love Me Do
- And I Love Her
- Here Today
- Queenie Eye
- The Fool on the Hill
- Lady Madonna
- Eleanor Rigby
- Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite
- Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
- Band on the Run
- Back in the USSR
- Let It Be
- Live and Let Die
- Hey Jude
- Hi Hi Hi
- Let’s Go Crazy (Prince)
- Golden Slumbers
- Carry That Weight
- The End
The day Prince died, Bob Mould played a micro show at the Turf Club in St. Paul. This was a preview for back-to-back nights in the mainroom at First Avenue, the first of which DGS and I planned to attend. Still in shock from the purple news, the club was a very calming and welcoming place for us to be. They had the screen down over the stage before the show (as usual), but that night it was a non-stop loop of Prince pictures (see the gallery after the jump).
After an early dinner at the Depot Tavern, we got inside right at doors in order to catch both opening acts – Fury Things and The Suicide Commandos. Both openers were good – Fury Things opened up for Bob in the mainroom in 2015 (and that Entry show in 2014 that I still regret not attending). The Commandos are older than both of us, but still bring it in a big way.
While I was never a big Hüsker Dü fan back in the day, I loved Sugar and have all of Mould’s solo albums (and have since gone back for the early stuff too). The latest Patch the Sky album received great reviews and even got a fair amount of airplay on The Current. In an interview with Chris Riemenschneider before the Minnesota shows, the 55-year-old Mould talks about three solo albums in four years, working through personal issues in San Francisco and how he takes care of himself by eating right and getting to the gym every day.
I didn’t get a set list to this show, but Chad Werner at City Pages had a nice write-up. It was a blistering rock and roll show and the cover of “When You Were Mine” was a nice touch (even with the tour manger singing lead). The only disappointment was the sound engineer from a video crew that thought it would be cool to set up a dual-mic rig in front of the soundboard, perfectly blocking our view of center stage. Boo!
From the Bob Mould Facebook page:
I never spoke with Prince. He always struck me as a private guy. Maybe he was shy around strangers. We never had much actual interaction – a couple nods in passing, but no real words were exchanged.
The Twin Cities of the 1980s was a very special time for all of us local musicians. There were the North Minneapolis R&B artists, the South Minneapolis guitar rock bands, and in the center of it all was First Avenue/7th Street Entry.
I’ve seen Prince perform sold out shows with The Revolution at First Ave, he and a rhythm section jamming as a guitar/bass/drums three piece in the Entry for 30 people, and was selfishly frustrated when he took over “the main room” for 25 days of filming Purple Rain.
I had the pleasure of spending seven days recording the basic tracks for my first solo album at Paisley Park in December 1988. It was the most professional studio I had ever seen at that point in my life. On the seventh day, I moved from the B room to Studio A, which was Prince’s primary room. I remember seeing Sheila E’s percussion in one of the isolation booths. The large control room was decorated with several of Prince’s scarves. It certainly felt like Prince’s home.
Prince was an artist through and through – always pushing himself to new levels, often creating controversy through his actions and words, and ultimately creating a lifetime of wonderful memories for the world with his incredible volumes of published (and unheard) works.
I heard the news while driving from Tomah WI to Minneapolis. I immediately flipped on The Current 89.3 FM to make sure what I was hearing was true. Sure enough, there was a live report from outside Paisley Park confirming the sad news of Prince’s passing.
I’m two blocks from First Avenue as I write these words. Friday and Saturday nights, I will walk that same stage we all know from the movie. The exterior walls of First Avenue are covered with stars to honor the musicians who made an impact on music fans in Minnesota.
Make no mistake: Prince was the brightest star in these Northern skies. My deepest condolences to his family, friends, and fellow musicians. Prince’s music will give consolation and comfort to the collective grief. Godspeed.
The night before we went to see fake Foreigner at Mystic Lake, we were at the Cedar Cultural Center to see a Swedish original, Väsen. Founded in 1990, we first discovered this unique group when they were a guest on A Prairie Home Companion at the Fitzgerald in St. Paul.
Väsen has released 16 albums, but we only have two in our iTunes library (so far). It’s a bit hard to describe their sound, but let’s just say the nyckelharpa is an amazing instrument. Olov Johansson is a World Champion nyckelharpa player and the other two members of the trio, Mikael Marin (viola) and Roger Tallroth (guitar), combine to create a Scandinavian folk sound that is reminiscent of the theme song to the TV show Lilyhammer.
They joked that they play too many polskas, but what a fun night of music.
This Saturday night casino show back on 4/9/2016 was the one that finally made me realize I need to research old groups *before* I buy tickets. Foreigner songs were a big part of my formative years and I had never seen them live. While I knew Lou Gramm was out of the picture, I figured Mick Jones was still worth the money, right?
Well, turns out Mick was sick that night and we ended up paying waaaaay too much money to hear what was essentially a Foreigner cover band. It was really weird, though, that I was one of the few people in the sold-out, 2100-seat venue that seemed to care. I mean, just check out this glowing review from Dave Rubene at Twin Cities Media.
What the hell, people.
I will say, the musicians themselves were talented and it was cool to have them bring out the local high school choir during the encore. I also really have a soft spot for many of these songs – particularly Juke Box Hero, Waiting for a Girl Like You and Urgent. This wasn’t enough, however, for me to get over how the new lead singer sounded nothing like the original.
Set list and pictures after the jump.
- Double Vision
- Head Games
- Cold as Ice
- Waiting for a Girl Like You
- Dirty White Boy
- Say You Will
- Feels Like the First Time
- Juke Box Hero
- Long, Long Way From Home
- I Want to Know What Love Is (with Prior Lake High School Choir)
- Hot Blooded
MK @ EVHS ChoirOriginally published by DK on December 20, 2016 at 9:01 am
Jumping back into the pile of old concert review drafts, here’s one from April 2, 2016, when we went to see Gary Clark, Jr. at First Avenue for his The Story of Sonny Boy Slim tour. We didn’t see him the first time he came through town solo in 2013, so we were really looking forward to this show (plus the $37.50 tickets went on sale like nine months earlier). Carson McHone was the opener, but I think we got there late and ended up with a crappy spot in the back corner of the floor, so I don’t recall much about her set.
To be honest, I’m a much bigger fan of Blak and Blu than I am of the new album. Still, Mr. Clark is an amazing musician and it was great to see him at my favorite venue. He came back to play the Basilica Block Party again later in the year, but we always seem to have conflicts with that event (and I’ve still never been to one). Can’t seem to find a full set list anywhere online, but here is the Riemenschneider review from the Strib. A few pics after the jump too.
Digging into the backlog of concert posts, here’s one from a show way back in January (1/30/2016, to be exact). I was really excited to see the reunited Babes in Toyland at First Avenue, especially after hearing great things about their 2015 Rock the Garden gig. Kat Bjelland and Lori Barbero didn’t disappoint, bringing the fierceness that made them a favorite of Beavis and Butthead. New bass player Clara Salyer fit in just fine and opener Kitten Forever set the tone early, jumping between roles in classic girl punk style. Read more in this blog post from Twin Cities Media, which also provided a set list.
One side note – we were supposed to see Babes again as part of a Lowertown Line taping on October 20th, but they cancelled just a few days before (Bruise Violet took their place and kicked ass). More pics and the set list after the jump.
- He’s My Thing
- Right Now
- Spit to See the Shine
- Swamp Pussy
- Sweet ’69
- Won’t Tell
- Handsome & Gretel
- Bruise Violet
- Vomit Heart
- Dust Cake Boy
- Oh Yeah
Thank you Suzy V for the “To DK” – sorry I didn’t say moreOriginally published by DK on November 8, 2016 at 7:04 pm
Eastview High School Symphonic BandOriginally published by DK on October 27, 2016 at 8:41 pm
Bruise Violet kicking assOriginally published by DK on October 20, 2016 at 8:20 pm
Let’s set the way-back machine to my last birthday (only 39 weeks ago), when I used my “Luos Mulysa” tickets on a cold Tuesday night at the Turf Club to see Mr. Dave Pirner and his buddies (including the always wonderful Michael Bland). This was before their new album came out and before they made their triumphant return to the Main Room.
We’d seen Soul Asylum before, but without Dan Murphy and Karl Mueller, we really didn’t know what to expect this time. Dave was in great form, though, and I even liked most of the new songs. This is a group that sneaks up on you, with a lot of songs you remember once they start playing them (full set list after the jump).
We skipped opener Rupert Angeleyes, but aside from that, I don’t remember much else from that night. This little social mashup site, though, has a sampling.
- Shut Down
- Just Like Anyone
- Watcha Need
- Black Gold
- Without a Trace
- Summer of Drugs
- Can’t Help It
- Never Really Been
- Eyes of a Child
- Runaway Train
- Rebel Rebel (David Bowie)
- Stand Up and Be Strong
- String of Pearls
- April Fool
Kid two all fancy-likeOriginally published by DK on October 18, 2016 at 6:59 am