Tuesday, May 31, 2011
THE BUNNYMEN DO MICKEY
The last and final show. The day was spent driving down the coast stopping at various parks along the way, finding one just north of San Diego where I enjoyed sitting in the sun and spending a little time reading.
At the appropriate hour I drove to Anaheim where the House of Blues is located, in the heart of Disneyland, a place I had vowed never to visit no matter how much the kids begged. But here I was, a sacrifice made for the Bunnymen. I parked the truck and walked to the HOB a couple hours early, checking out where the rear entrance was that band members would exit the theater after the show. On one side of the restaurant below the theater was a service exit for staff where I found Gordy having a cigarette. We talked for a while during which time Will came out to check on what was happening. I told them both that I hoped Ian would for once sing The Fountain, tacked onto Nothing Lasts Forever, without expecting the audience to pick it up and finish it, which they never do.I love the song was hoping he'd do it beautifully by himself. Gordy's smoke was done and I bid them farewell, going to dinner at a Mexican restaurant across the way. When done I took my place in line with many others. There was some grumbling that people who had dinner in the HOB restaurant got to enter the theater first.
Kelly started off the show and got the audience juiced up. The Bunnymen followed, but it was a much different show compared to the last two with Ian showing no willingness to interact with the audience. While playing The Fountain he got pissed off when the audience kept on chatting amongst themselves, prompting him to interrupt the song, telling everyone to "Please shut up!" Then something about "two Gatlin girls" and "you don't own me, good old fellas," followed by another "shut up" to someone in the audience. At the conclusion of Heaven Up Here he abruptly said he was going to go outside to get some air and quickly left the stage. Will came out and apologized, saying "All right. Mac's not feelin to good but we are going to carry on. It's just that he's havin a little air because he's got something up with his back. Peace!" Minutes later Ian came back on stage and said "Thank you. Sorry about that. [Mumbled something about Saturday] We want to do some songs that are bonafide classics. Sing along if ya like." He then proceeded to skip over the last 5 songs on the Heaven Up Here album, jumping right to the encore, limited to only Killing Moon and Lips Like Sugar. And that ended the show. Something very strange happened tonight!
The theater empties out into the cool night air. I find the whole of Kelly's band having a smoke outside the restaurant service door. We chatted for a while. I learned that the band normally exits from the underground service entrance, visible below. While Kelly went inside to settle finances, I run around looking for a way down, climbing several fences but not succeeding. I found Kelly's band again and we talked a bit more, they accepting loose cash in pocket for some fast food on tomorrow's return trip home to San Francisco.
As I made my way out I came across two women, one of whom was very drunk, being hassled by Disney security. Even though I was probably as drunk as they were, I said I'd make sure they got back to their vehicle. I helped them back to their car, the one sober enough to take charge at that point. I had a late night meal at some restaurant and then drove out of the LA basin, finding a dark, quiet parking lot in some commercial office/warehouse area off the highway for the night. I awoke a few hours later as the sky was lightening to the sound of a security guard reading off my license plate into a radio. When he left I got up and immediately departed, not wanting to find out what might follow. The trip was essentially over. Time to drive east, back to reality.
"Their hearts didn’t seem into it anymore — which is all the more disappointing because up until the moment the second set inexplicably derailed I don’t think I’ve heard the enduring, influential Liverpudlian outfit sound better in at least 10 years, maybe 20."
"In any case, characteristically temperamental as such a sight might be, it nonetheless brought an otherwise powerful performance to a screeching halt. No matter how they may have recovered in the encore, there’s no chance this show held a candle to what I hear was a masterful set the night before at Club Nokia. What a shame."
Read it all here: