Friday, September 16, 2011

triple threat

Some thoughts from last night's concert trifecta:

The singer for the Walkmen came across as a bit of a tool -- the only member of his band in a suit, the way he jokingly berated the absent sound guy before the start of their set -- although I feel like he somewhat redeemed himself with a gracious thank you to the audience as they left the stage. Wish I would've known their music better, but I wasn't left wanting to pick up one of their albums after. Still though, solid band and I'm glad I got to see them.

Apparently everyone and their mom loves the Fleet Foxes, though I'm pretty indifferent. I was hoping their performance would convert me to fandom, but alas, that conversion failed. However, I did come away with a respect for them as the talented bunch they are -- especially the dude who played the flute, upright bass, guitar, violin, and probably a few other things I'm forgetting. My favorite part of their set was when fans were shouting song requests, Rachael yelled out, "Just do your best!"

I love this(ese) version(s) of "For Emma," and the conversation with the French dude at the beginning is pretty great. Thanks to Zach who posted this on his blog a few years ago. His love for Bon Iver was infectious and it's partly the reason I love them too.

Bon Iver was the real reason I was there. I was surprised how large and full this band sounded -- but I shouldn't have been given the nine band members on stage (including two drummers and various brass and woodwind multi-instrumentalists). And who would've thought that "Blood Bank" could be such a great rock song? Let's talk about some of the great guitars on the Bon Iver stage -- a Jaguar, a Les Paul, an SG, what appeared to be Telecasters Deluxe and Thinline, a couple Gibson hollow bodies, an ancient dobro, and on "The Wolves" Justin Vernon played a guitar I didn't recognize -- it had three P-90 looking pickups and sounded great. Anyway, enough guitar talk, I just loved the variety -- so much better than Ben Gibbard switching out different Telecasters the entire night when I saw Death Cab last month. (More to their credit, the Fleet Foxes guitarist had a great selection as well).

I don't care much for Comerica Theatre -- it's so big and sterile -- but hanging in the GA standing area made quite a difference. Sadly, those are usually hard tickets to come by unless you have the extra cash to pay the resale price (I lucked out in the presale this time).

Oh, those nine or so guitars I mentioned weren't played simultaneously, they just passed them around among band members throughout the night.

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