San Diego Radio Sucks Quite A Bit

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Antony and the Johnsons - Walt Disney Concert Hall - Los Angeles, CA

Wow. I'm really not sure how to sum this up, so I'll use a phrase from my oftentimes concert partner in crime, Mr. Conner:

It was awesome. The musicians were amazing, the venue was amazing and the crowd was amazing.

Antony performed with the LA Philharmonic this evening at Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown Los Angeles. This is a truly inspiring venue, both inside and out. Designed by God, or at least God's Assistant, this thing is gorgeous to look at on the outside, and almost scary to be inside of. Kinda like a superstar model.

Antony took the stage at about 8:15 with a group of approximately 18 musicians, a full brass section, oboe, bassoon, piano, percussionist, and clarinet, to name a few. Not to mention the conductor, who was exciting to watch as well. He just did what he did so well.

They played for probably about 90 minutes, including one encore, which included a very long story about one of Antony's role models in New York. He also shared that he'd only met the LA Philharmonic the day before, and had practiced with them twice before the performance. Describing how he explained the songs he said, "I told them, OK, for this one, imagine you're a fish..."

Most of the songs were ones I wasn't familiar with. He only did one song from I Am A Bird Now (For Today I Am A Boy), and I assume most of the other songs were from his recently released Another World EP and from his debut album. However, I did catch his touching, yet somewhat funny cover of Beyonce's Crazy In Love. A bit different than the version David Byrne treated us to with The Extra Action Marching Band at the Hollywood Bowl a while back, but it was still pretty amazing.

Another highlight: 30 seconds of silence during one of the songs. Honestly. Without exaggeration, it was at least that long, and nobody took a breath.

This was one of two shows on this US tour. He plays on 10/16 at The Apollo in NYC(!!!!!), and then two dates in London at the end of the month. Truly, this was a special evening. It's not every day you get to see a transvestite sing torch songs with a miniature symphony.

Oh, I should mention, I went to throw out my gum in what I thought was a trash can, but had to take it outside to find one.

"I thought it was a trash can, but it wasn't, I told my companions."

"What was it?" they asked.

"It was," I started, grasping for a word, "art."

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Trifecta Phase Three - David Byrne @ The Greek Theatre Los Angeles, CA

I just got home from The Trifecta, now complete after watching David Byrne perform songs he and Brian Eno worked on together. Well, mostly. The crowd kept screaming for Psycho Killer, which didn't fit the mold, but neither did Burning Down the House, as he admitted.

The set consisted of about a half dozen songs from the new album Everything That Happens Will Happen Today, and the rest of the set seemed to be made up entirely of old Talking Heads songs.

Don't get me wrong, the set was fantastic, complete with three dancers (two of them very, very sexy), three backup singers, two percussionists and another guitar player onstage. However, I was really hoping for something, hell anything from My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. I don't think he played a single song off of that all night, but I'm sure my good friend the Fountain Valley Lounge Lizard will point out if I'm right on that one.

One of the greatest things about the night was that the crowd were absolutely into it the entire time. So much so, in fact, that after two encores, David conferred with the band to see if they'd be up to do one last song. They closed out the night on a bit of a slow note with the title track from the new album.

All in all, three great nights of music, three very, very different shows, and all three exceeded our expectations.

Back to reality now. Sigh.

Look for a more complete review of My Bloody Valentine soon.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Trifecta Phase Two - My Bloody Valentine

There are two types of people in this world: People who have seen My Bloody Valentine, and people who have not.

I feel like I've evolved.

What can you say?

We all agreed on one thing. That to describe it is next to impossible.

I feel like I've had my chromosomes rearranged without a kiss.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Trifecta Phase One - sigur rós

"I think, maybe, you all should stand up," the lead vocalist of the Icelandic enigma sigur rós suggested. The band had played nearly its entire set to a seated crowd at San Diego's Copley Symphony Hall, and we happily obliged. The four piece band was joined by four extra drummers, all pounding in unison on individual drums strapped to them as the band played gobbledigook, the opener from their most recent album, Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust (With a buzz in our ears, we play endlessly).

To say they merely played this song robs them of something, as it was a celebration of the entire set, the most energy imparted from the band to the crowd, and vice-versa. The song is in stark contrast to much of the band's beautifully sad, cinematic material, with three members playing acoustic guitars instead of the usual keys, guitar (often with a bow) and bass guitar. As the crowd clapped along happily, two figures appeared at opposite ends of the stage with massive cannons, and, along with two other stationary cannons, produced an orgasmic blast of confetti the likes of which I have never seen.

Keep in mind folks, this video was taken from the balcony. We were SHOWERED in confetti.

Here's one more glimpse of what you may have missed.


I haven't posted about what Conner and I are calling The Trifecta. The Trifecta is our three-day concert and drinking binge that marks the (almost) halfway mark between now and Coachella. Three shows, three days, three cities. That is, if Santa Monica is a city, which I think it is.

Here's the itinerary:

10/1/2008 - Sigur Ros - Copley Symphony Hall - San Diego, CA
10/2/2008 - My Bloody Valentine - Santa Monica Civic - Santa Monica, CA
10/3/2008 - David Byrne - The Greek Theatre - Los Angeles, CA