Discussion in '2014 August September October - USA' started by Jen Fogelson, Jun 2, 2014.
Wow! Thanks, Fox - and I can't wait for the reviews!
Well, i'll be completely honest, i'm pretty sure this will be "the" review of Boston from what I understand. I'd love to be wrong, but regardless, here goes!
It's 8:00pm, and the lights dim... This red-headed man walks to the stage, alone with a guitar... Just seconds before he reaches the mic, and before anyone starts to clap, someone (*cough*) yells "YEAAAAAAH JOOOOOHN!!!" --- This "John Smith" character cracked a small smirk, and casually begun his half-hour set. Full disclosure: I love John Smith. He played a few songs from his first album, and went on to play Freezing Winds of Change, After the Storm, Salty & Sweet, and the guitar-slapping Winter to close. His album apparently came out in the USA yesterday (which I've oddly had for 2 months..?), but he immediately said his album already hit #1, and had some fun with the crowd throughout. Solid dude. I wish him the best in his career.
Then, sharply at 8:55pm, for the 9th time for me, "The Boss" came out with the band. From an outstanding row 6 and dead center seat, I could tell there was a vibe already with Dave and the band.
Much to my surprise, Birds of the High Arctic started our set. For whatever reason, I could always see a different song other than Gulls or BOTHA (like, an upbeat track) open the tour. Regardless, that vibe I mentioned in the line above? They KILLED it tonight. BOTHA, being my absolute favorite track of the album, was a flawless victory. Dave's voice was perfect, (aka not scratchy via Letterman), and the band just flat out blew the roof off on song 1. In fact, there was no tent over our heads for the rest of the show. I don't know where it went. Anyways......
Back in the World - the biggest highlight with this one was that Keith grew into this song. It gradually grew, and the crowd ate it up - going from a deathly negative song, to happily nude in nature. Next, As the Crow Flies was a lovely 3rd song. It's just always been such a pleasant track. Boston was in over their head come the next song... Being the title track, Mutineers. I still struggle to understand how some of y'all grayheads don't find this track to be exciting and/or strong - because I see it as quite the opposite! It's so similar to the shape of BOTHA (less the "Strings and Drums" breakdown), being a gradual linear incline until the release, and the quiet resolution.
MEANWHILE, as a side-note, (Sorry DCA, what I felt was real hahaha) Niamh and I were making quite a bit of legitimate eye-contact from Mutineers to various later points throughout the gig. We totally fed off each other's vibes - from her lovely melodic voice and irish swagger, to my insane fanboy antics to try and jam in the moment with a bandmate. It was quite funny at times too! She almost started laughing and had to look away at one point - but what can I say, "it sure [felt] good?"
And as a seamless transition into some wafty texture, we went to Beautiful Agony (take 1), as Caroline hit her (NOW GLOW-IN-THE-DARK?!?!) tube on her mic. (take 2) went on flawlessly. I love the complex lyrical and musical play that this song delivers. Again, props to Keith - he totally kicked it up a notch with a month of practice since our last gig. Then, onto Fugitive! WOO. Then, because of the 4 darling, younger-ish white-privileged audience member friends, the irony began...
My Oh My you know they just don't sit, got in our minds, wanted to kick them out, tried to fight them tried to sit them down, BUT YOU AND YOUR *(@#%@&@#%@#$ PAIN IN THE #%@ FRIENDS who willingly ruined many people's night by standing up and causing a scene. But! Their updated version is fantastic! I loved the song! Just had some lovely dark shadows blocking our view. And shame on me for being considerate - and I'm allllll for standing at concerts. It's what us young people do - but some of us care about the people around us and show restraint. ANYWHO! Rant over.
Kathleen - Actually, I heard that they changed the title to "Niahm".....
And then they brought back Alibi. No words - they just again killed it. Just like how Cake killed my brain. It's a good beat, good riff, but LITERALLY the most pointless song he's ever made. Ever. Forever ever. But, a reprieve was in the air! Snow in Vegas (dedicated to Olivia - who I believe had to have been there!! gah!! Nerd moment!!) was a lovely experience. Surely the lovely girls sat down for this "slow song" - which also pissed me off because it ain't slow!!! Onwards...
Another highlight song was, of course, Girl like you. You could tell they were 'working on it' this past month. More props to Keith for keeping it fresh and interesting, and to Dave for going on a "I don't know what I don't know what I don't know what"...etc... cycle at the end to just add to the haze the song creates.
And, by request of a lone man sitting two rows up, Dave acknowledged him and played Last Summer, where Caroline blew the roof off (again) with her cello. Then, an absolutely beautiful TYL started. By this point in the show, the Boston crowd got into Dave's head (in that our crowd was extraordinarily more fun than the past few Boston shows). Dave got into the final chorus lines, and he heard a few audience members (cough) yell "WHOAHOHOHWHYYYY" after the first of the usual 5 TYL's. So, in light of the grave risk of disappointment, Dave stopped on the 2nd-to-last "Better Last" - and we all yelled it back. It ended. Yay. Then a crafty Shine came about - where he pulled a "Babylon" by going from thumb-strums to using a pick at the end. Freakin' smart on his part! Then, a beautiful Babylon solo version, where I finally got up and turned around and said to my darling folks behind me, "CMON IT'S BABYLON", and most followed! Joy!
THEN! The harmonium came on stage, and I was getting ready for FHYCASTS. I was wrong! Silver Lining!!! Damn, that's one of my favorite live songs, and I consider Boston to be very lucky and fortunate to have had it on the set. It was a more loose version than the way it was before, but equally as powerful. I loved it. And, to end the first set, Please Forgive Me rocked us out - though they changed the outro back to something reminiscent of the actual White Ladder style, but with very small hints of the post-LISM version. Interesting. But it was great - Dave came out to jump and dance on stage, and Niamh was at the piano just clapping with us. Actually, she started wobbling her head briefly when Dave left the piano - I took it as humor. I mean, I'd do it if given the chance!
Gulls as the encore starter. Beautiful. Sail followed, and I still deeply miss the first verse, but John Smith makes this particular rendition of the song special. And the yee-hee-hee's that Dave does. Actually, take the "yee-hee-hee's", subtract one "hee", and you have the closer! TOIL brought back the party, and got that energy out of us all.
Great show. They sounded amazing, the chemistry was shown, and the crew did a lovely job (even with the lights!) And holy ****, I'm in one of DG's tourbook photos. It's a sign. It was meant to be. I'm famous.
(Good night y'all. I hope you dig the review, and enjoy all of your respective shows!)
And that was quite a review! Much appreciated !
Great review! Glad it was a good one! Way to kick things off!
great review fox thanks.................and yup the fam is all here
Sounds like it was a great show!
Nice review of the show posted by Bill Brotherton on BostonHerald.com. Sounds like a fan.
Last Best Show: David Gray at the Pavilion
David Gray was nearing the conclusion of "Mutineers,"the title cut of his new album, and his excellent seven-member band was roaring along, speeding up, faster and faster, louder and louder, making a joyful noise. Gray played a bit of harmonica while the guitars and electric piano played at full-tilt. When done, Gray smiled widely and the near capacity crowd at the Blue Hills Bank Pavilion Friday night jumped to its feet and gave the British singer-songwriter a rousing ovation.
Gray is justifiably proud of "Mutineers," his tenth album and most adventurous of his career. He started the show with six songs from the record, his finest effort since "White Ladder," the 1998 smash that spawned the relatively straight-forward folk-based hits "Sail Away," "Babylon" and "Please Forgive Me."
Gray is experimenting more these days, both lyrically and musically, blurring the edges and adding unexpected piano diversions and vocal flights, bringing more color to his exquisite story-songs. Earlier this summer at this very venue, Ray Lamontagne, a similar artist, altered his winning formula, disappointing many fans who expected quieter acoustic folk songs and were bombarded with long, spacey jams. Not so with Gray's passionate devotees, the Grayheads, who embraced the changes and responded enthusiastically to the new, riskier stuff.
It wasn't exactly 50 shades of Gray, but the 46-year-old entertainer changed things up subtly enough to make old and new fans take notice. And it was terrific.
The new "Birds of the High Arctic" kicked off the 21-song, two-hour show in winning fashion. With Gray at piano, it started as a quiet ballad, gradually gained steam and evolved into a charming pop-rocker, aided by cello and exquisite five-part harmony .
Gray's rocking side emerged during "Fugitive" and the show-closing "The One I Love." The acoustic guitar-driven "As the Crow Flies" and "My Oh My" demonstrated what a fine, expressive singer Gray is. He played a ukelele-size six-string guitar on a spectacular "Last Summer" and ventured into Bruce Hornsby-like piano explorations during a rousing "Kathleen," a jazzy "Girl Like You" and a gently rejiggered "Please Forgive Me."
For my money, Gray is still at his best when it's just him and his acoustic guitar up there on stage. "Babylon" and "Shine" became boisterous sing-alongs.
Gray, clutching a Heineken, started the encore with "Gulls," a gorgeous piano ballad that features lovely harmonies and synths that sound like ocean waves crashing on the shore. "A goosebumps-enticing "Sail Away" encouraged couples to hug and smooch, and the upbeat Buddy Holly-like hit "The One I Love" sent folks dancing up the aisles as the 11 p.m. curfew approached.
Boston has always been one of Gray's strongholds. He just played a sold-out Colonial Theatre in May and an impromptu show on the Colonnade Hotel's rooftop deck in 2009 remains one of those "Damn I wish I had seen that" moments in the city's musical history. "Mutineers" has reinvigorated Gray, and we can't wait to see where he goes from here.
Was this shows version of "please forgive me" similar to how he used to perform it during his "life in slow motion" tour with the extended instrumental ending?
Awesome show. PFM did not have the extended instrumental ending, but more the simpler "White Ladder" style, which I prefer. Highlight for me was DG doing Babylon solo - I feel like he keeps stripping it down and it keeps getting better! And Gulls - wasn't a huge fan of it on the album, but seeing/hearing it performed live was a different experience entirely. Fantastic show, best seats I've ever had to any concert, and well worth it!
Just a few shots from the Boston show. Bummed I couldn't bring in my SLR.
And here's Alibi from the show:
And here's that PFM action:
Wow! Love that crowd too! So great and getting me excited for my show. Did I miss why Niamh came to the piano, though? I thought she was going to take over the piano while DG stepped away, but she just clapped. Did like the head bobble, though!
Fox, sorry you had to contend with those annoying chicks blocking your view - my wife and I saw them and commented that we were glad we weren't standing behind them. We got super lucky with the group around us - all chill and respectful as you'd expect Grayheads to be. The only annoying drunk was the 40-something woman at the end of our row who smacked my wife's backside as we were scooting by for some reason. Thankfully we only had to pass by her once.
By the way, I noticed the sign saying we were consenting to be filmed at the entrance of the venue... Anyone know why? Were they filming this for a live DVD release?
(or generally, you mean for the venue due to the cameras/projection screens on the side).
Fox, that's what I thought at first perhaps, but then I noticed one of the cameramen shooting what I assume was b-roll and aiming his camera into the crowd on a few occasions, hence the question. Might be interesting to see if other concerts have the same disclaimer.
Damn fox nice review!
Totally agree on John on Sail.. much to my disbelief he's really took the reins from Neill on that one
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