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Lowgens02 at aol.com
Lowgens02 at aol.com
Sun Jul 13 05:49:59 CDT 2008
Review from LLR by BellBoySM.......
The Who at Pauley Pavilion 7/12/08
Since I couldn’t let Gad down, I am writing this coming down off a Redbull
and Vitamin C high. There is a reason Linus Pauling may be considered our
greatest chemist as 8,000 mgs of Vitamin C is powerful when taken with Redbull
and diet pills. I wasn’t quite James Bond trying to save the world while on
benzedrine but I experienced a sharper focus than smoking mother nature or
drinking fermented mother nature.
Since subjective reality is relative to me the observer, I will start with
My Generation, a tribute band, that played from roughly from 11:30 to
whenever. I think tribute bands are a form of necrophilia. I don’t want to see The
Who as schtick or what they were say, Leeds era. I want my Who varied,
flawed and not self-conscious of what they are supposed to do (like the 1999-2000
and 2006-2007 tours). This band has a great deal of affection for The Who,
has fun with what they are doing and once I let go it, played a pretty damn
good reasonable facsimile. The aping takes away from the show. Most people are
not going to get the numerous bootleg references. When they settled down
and just played the songs, they were really quite good especially the Pete and
John (which just shows how hard it is to find another Keith). I was having a
good time until they did You Better, You Bet then it was time to go home.
YBYB just takes the steam out of a show and should be retired. One of the
Relayers needed a ride to his Hotel so my timing in leaving was great as
questions turned into a German taxi cab.
Why I started with the tribute band was because The Who did not play
tonight, just a series of bands playing Who songs including The Two. The bands
played the songs with their own personality and not trying to nail Swansea 1976
intros or chord progressions. I can handle nostalgia, I can’t handle
David Duchovny came out and introduced the Foo Fighters. The Foo Fighters
played a vicious Young Man Blues. Supergrass’ lead singer then came out and
the Foos did Bargain. What was great about the songs were great selection and
the Foos put their personality into the songs. There were mistakes but
they were charming, were made based on extreme effort and affection for the
material. They, like all bands, should have done four songs.
After the Foos’ two songs there was a video montage of various celebrities
discussing The Who’s place in music history. I was really happy that the
celebrities shown got The Who and displayed a depth of knowledge about their
catalogue. They were serious Who fans and not just celebrities which was nice and
Flaming Lips came out to a video montage explaining Tommy. The Lips’ lead
singer was in his bubble crowd surfing the audience. Rainn Wilson introduced
them channeling Elton John from the Tommy movie and it was funny and sincere.
The Lips’ bass player was in a skeleton suit. Opened with Amazing
Journey/Overture into Tommy, Can You Hear Me, Pinball Wizard, I’m Free (with a crunchy
riff) and See Me, Feel Me. Short, compact medley. The drummer tipped over
his drums. Nice mini-set.
There was then a Keith Moon montage. The transitions between artists were
quick and filled with video montages of either albums or celebrity comments.
An I Can See For Miles montage was shown. Mila Kunis from the 70s Show did
an intro for Incubus (twice as her mic cut out the first time- superfluous).
Incubus came out and tore through ICSFM and I Can’t Explain.
Another montage led to Tenacious D filling time so Pearl Jam could set up.
TD did Squeeze Box as only Jack Black could do it and I am not sure that was
a good thing. At least he didn’t say “Ska-doush.”
Sean Penn (of Santa Monica High) introduces Pearl Jam after he discussed
Sell Out or selling out or whatever his point was. Love Reign O’er Me is
aggressively played with a string section. The Real Me is played with a horn
section. They also should have done a four song set. Their guitarist throws his
guitar in the air and Eddie throws his mic into the crowd.
During the latest montage between sets, I turned around and noticed the bass
player from Nirvana. Tall dude and has Pete’s current hair cut.
I try to convince the esteemable Tim Ballou to move up from the back of the
hall into the 10th row Pete side. After an excursion to the facility,
Operation Seat Upgrade is initialized and accomplished. Adam Sandler comes out a
does a solo rap with a guitar doing the Magic Bus beat. Think opera man
crossed with Travis Bickle with an electric guitar. Made some cute lyrics about
each of the original four members of the band set to Magic Bus’ rhythm.
The Two come out and start with Baba to green laser banks. The sound is
mediocre. The music playing is excellent but the sound is terrible.
A crunchy Seeker is played with Roger coming in too soon on a vocal and Zak
is asserting himself as an equal member of the band. Zak was absolutely
Who Are You follows. Nothing unique just a competent recreation of the
Same with Behind Blue Eyes. Nothing exciting or challenging.
A guitar change leads to 2000 Years which was gamely attempted. The problem
was the mix made it tough for Roger to hear himself sing and to sing
effectively through the noise. Pete is also having problems with a front speaker
greatly overriding a rear speaker (at least to me that seemed to be the
You Better You Bet just kills the show. Roger is off on the vocal. The
sound is terrible except that Pino is higher in the mix and playing very well too
(Simon also was contributing as the backing foursome including Rabbit where
like high quality role players on a Championship team- great veteran
leadership and execution). Pete stops the songs and is pissed off about the sound.
Pete had been motioning Bob Pridden about Pete’s unhappiness with the sound
for quite some time. Pete said that the front speaker was deafening him and
to stop whatever was coming out of that speaker. YB, YB is restarted and is
significantly better as is custom with The Who even though Roger is a little
tentative with the restart.
My Generation was next and took the full brunt of Pete being unhappy with
the sound as MG was on fire. Zak is playing very well off of Pete especially
when Pete starts windmilling or power chording. MG is special with the end
Won’t Get Fooled Again is energetic and they are finding a tempo. Pete’s
guitar then cuts out in the 2nd verse and Zak hesitates for a second and the
song kinda loses its way for 30 seconds. Then Roger can’t hear himself with
the Meet the New Boss scream. The sound was never straightened out.
Interestingly to see what makes the show and what it sounds like. Pete is windmilling
at the end and Zak is right with him thrashing about. Zak is on fire with
these short sets.
Some editorial comments from The Two with no group introductions, then Tea &
Theatre. Roger sang his nuts off. With a shorter show, Roger roared Tea &
T more than he sang it. Wow!!!
That’s it and it only 10:27 pm.
Too short for everyone. A very competent show. The bands and speakers had
a great deal of affection for the material and The Who and it showed in the
quality of the night. Other than the sound problems, everyone I talked was
effusive with their praise and that the night exceeded their expectations.
It was great to see all of the Who-ateers throughout the night. There was
certainly a communal feeling for the show with seeing some 20-25 people both
old and new. Thanks for Tim B. for allowing me to act like a Jewish Mother
Hen and guilting him into moving up into an empty seat in my row. Gad we could
have had Pauley . . .
If you didn’t go it wasn’t like Vegas 1999 or other unique shows that you
had to be at. Great show because of Zak and its tightness due to a lack of a
need to pace themselves but nothing revelatory or life changing.
Hoping Nokia is just as energetic (and Zak keeps asserting himself) but with
a big, new setlist.
What does that Charles Lilley know!!!! (I only ate dinner with him).
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