Monday, November 19, 2012
As always, the altitude gets to Dave, requiring a breather between songs while sweat pours out of his skin. He's always entertaining and the music kept everyone in the packed house dancing on their feet. The audience loves the band, the band loves the audience, Dave and his crew taking the time to shake hands with all after the show. We appreciate his appreciation!
I biked back to the office where I found my secluded spot under the cottonwood trees along the creek where I spent a quiet, restful night.
Inspired by the first wave of punk in the U.K., the Beat combined the social critique of punk with the broader emotional and sonic palette of reggae. Formed in 1978, the English Beat (so named when the band made its way across the Atlantic) released three classic albums before Dave Wakeling and Ranking Roger moved on to form General Public, where they realized great commercial success. The two eventually parted ways to front their own versions of their original band.
This regular Westword feature is great to learn about who's playing here in the Denver area. As shown on this top 10 list, there were plenty of great bands performing here this weekend that I would also have liked to seen.
Friday, November 2, 2012
“Julian weaves this folk tale together with the Morecambe tragedy to create a spectacular visual poem displayed across nine enormous screens. Images of modern Shanghai intercut with 1930s film noir shots of the city; images of the remote Fujian landscape, shrouded in clouds just like ancient Chinese scroll painting; scenes of Mazu floating over the hypnotic, rolling sea, looking for the sailors; and in the background a poem especially commissioned for the film is recited in Chinese.”
The film’s original musical score is by fellow east Londoner Jah Wobble and the Chinese Dub Orchestra and Maria de Alvear. As we all know Jah Wobble was the original bass player in PiL in the late 1970s and early 1980s. What a nice coincidence!
"I realized that there were no other opening acts listed so I figured I would see if we [Retox] could get on the bill as an opener. Our agent got a hold of the promoter and they said we could play but they could not pay us since PiL's guarantee was fairly large and would not be met," says vocalist of Retox, Justin Pearson, in our chat after the gig. The deal was, Retox could have as many guests as they wanted. "Now that probably means something different to most people. But we had no problem at all getting our list up to triple digits. And, well, they [House of Blues] were a bit bummed. But we were not getting paid and it was in writing, so they honored it."
Read it here:
Highway, rooftops, spewing stacks
Human cancer spreads
Gentle waves break and rush forward
Caress the sandy shore
Life of unfulfilled desires
Drifts from shore to shore
Find not the journeys promise
But waves of sorrow
No longer understand it
Think like a machine
Like giant robots in the sky
Long armed monsters march
Download the flac show here, parts 1 and 2:
Thursday, November 1, 2012
A bonus prize was made available the night before my departure when PiL’s October 27, 2012 show in Reno was broadcast live, allowing me to begin the party a day early. Even though the quality of the audio and video was not the greatest, it was a free show and I watched the livecast from beginning to end, pretending as though I were right there in the audience.
After the show I had a late night meal at The Pantry up the block on Figueroa Street followed by a cigar on the roof of the hotel, accessed via the outdoor fire escape. I was savoring the experience of the last few hours.
Lydon, one of the more compelling singers in rock history, was a fireball of energy and hyper-kinetic movements as the synthesizer stabs of “This Is Not a Love Song” kicked off the main set. Filled with wild gesticulating and altered pitch, Lydon’s vocals for “Deeper Water” (one of four selections from the current disc) resonated throughout the room, the overall mix perfect for this sometimes spotty sound trap.
Read it all here:
Sunday's concert came near the end of the band's three-year touring journey, which included the release this year of This Is PiL, the band's first new album in two decades and a return to form, as Lydon demonstrated in L.A. "We come from chaos/ You cannot change us, " he shouted during the album's "One Drop" against sharply echoing guitar lines of Lu Edmonds. "Cannot explain us/ And that's what makes us."
Dressed in a two-toned shirt, bright orange suspenders hanging behind him, Lydon comfortably mixed his past and present, with song choices stretching back to PiL's 1978 debut, First Issue, recorded shortly after he left the Sex Pistols. The sides of his head were cropped short, leaving a blond tuft of hair on top, and earrings dangled from both sides. Between songs, he soothed his throat by lifting a liquor bottle to his mouth, taking a swig, gargling and spitting it out.
The new album's "Reggie Song" shook from searing guitar with an Arabic flavor as Lydon sang, his hand raised. He grunted his words through a stretched-out "Bags" (from 1986's generically titled Album) over a deep bass rumble with slices of guitar. When a fan slurred back a lyric between songs, Lydon turned with a wicked grin. "With a voice like that, that why I'm up here and you're down there."
The concert was filmed as part of an ongoing documentary project on the band, which Lydon unexpectedly reconvened in 2009 after a long hibernation with the lineup of Edmonds, drummer Bruce Smith and bassist Scott Firth (who also operates the laptop). It was a homecoming for Lydon, who has lived in Los Angeles and Malibu since the Eighties, and he teased locals for cheering not quite loudly enough: "Laid back as usual? That's OK, la la. I live in la la."
Lydon has spent many of the last 20 years working on television, and reunited first with the Sex Pistols in 1996, but he has been unwilling or unable to create new songs with the groundbreaking punk act. His history with PiL is much longer, and it was the outfit in which he expanded and experimented with his voice. The PiL reunion inspired him to write again, and he is already making plans for another album with them
Read more: http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/public-image-ltd-lead-a-fiery-sermon-in-los-angeles-20121029#ixzz2BJgOgR00
Although the Pistols were gone within 3 years of their formation, they changed the world. Some would say for the better, and some would say for the worse. The Sex Pistols were a drunken, heroin influenced train wreck. Their front man couldn’t carry a tune, and didn’t care to try, their Bass Player, well he wasn’t really a Bass Player at all, offed himself on heroin and the band was dead and gone by 1978. But make no mistake, they were one of the single biggest influences on music and culture of the past 40 years. That, to me, was worth a trip to see Johnny and PIL on Sunday Night.
Read it here:
Busy ants crawl to and fro
The rim of their world
Mountains that rose from the sea
Watch the city grow
Seen through trains scratched windows
Broken people sit
Refuge in the buildings shadow
Cool oasis of green
Their ignorance and hatred
In the name of God
Download the flac show here, parts one and two: