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Archive for the ‘Montclair, NJ’ Category

[ATTENDED: January 14, 2023] Teddy Thompson

This was my eleventh time seeing Richard Thompson.  For a while we had been seeing him pretty regularly and then his habits changed.

I had been seeing him every chance I could, but I took a little time off from his tours, hoping that he would perhaps come back with an electric tour.  Sadly for me, he did in fact come around with an electric trio tour in 2018, but it coincided with a hike that we were scheduled to go on, so I had to miss it.

Back in 2020, he introduced a new component to his show, his new partner Zara Philips has been singing with him on many songs (often Richard & Linda Thompson songs, but sometimes adding backing vocals to Richard’s songs.

For a while it felt like Richard was playing the same basic songs at all of his shows, although as I look at his setlists I see that he always mixes in a few new songs every tour.  Indeed, in 2020, he threw in a whole bunch of songs that I hadn’t heard him play before.

I was super excited that he opened with Gethsemane, an older song (I can’t believe that album is 20 years old!) that I like a lot.  He sounded great and his guitar playing was, of course, outstanding.

During the pandemic, Richard released some online albums.  He played If I could Live My Life again from Bloody Noses (which he had played back in 2020, just before the shutdown).

He jokes about the age of the audience and said he would play a song from a Fairport Convention album.  He described the origins of Genesis Hall, and that it was a protest song, which I didn’t know.  He had played it before but not for more than seven or so years, so it was good to hear it again.

Richard recently played a few nights of all request shows in New York City, which I’d love to attend (al though I suspect people probably just request all the popular songs anyhow).   But I wonder if it makes him want to mix up his setlists at all.  Whatever the case it was great to hear him plat “Turning of the Tide” a song that I love and haven’t heard him play live for a long long time.

Then he played “Beeswing.”  I don’t think there’s been a show where he hasn’t played the song and yet this time it really hit me how beautiful it was.  And I was marveling about how Richard Thompson, creator of the song was merely thirty or forty feet away from us playing this song and how amazing it was to be so close to someone so creative.  I had a real moment.  (I’m going to assume it came from talking about how wild it must have been for my young kids to go to concerts and see their favorite bands up close like that, something I never got to do as a a little kid). (more…)

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[ATTENDED: January 14, 2023] Teddy Thompson

This was our first experience with Outpost in the Burbs, a fun venue in Montclair.  The venue is actually in a church (I think it might be outside in the summer).  This Richard Thompson show was sold out.  But the tickets were first come / first seated.  In a church.  So, in a series of pews.

We arrived in what we thought was plenty of time, but we couldn’t find parking and wound up pretty far away, so by the time we got into the church, it was almost 8PM.  We walked in and the lights went down.  Luckily there were announcements to be had (which we missed), as we were sent looking for a seat.  We were told there were seats in the balcony, so we trudged up the stairs to the (very full) balcony.  We headed back down, having seen seats across the room.  We headed over there only to discover that these seats (strangely empty) ere positioned directly behind two massive speaker cabinets which entirely blocked the stage–thus, why they were empty.  Really they should not have even been available.

Luckily, right next to them was a pew bench against the wall that had a mostly unobstructed view of Teddy as he came out on stage.  If he backed away from the mic I couldn’t see him at all, but he didn’t do that very often so it was fine. In fact, it was actually quiet comfortable.  The bench had a cushion, and I was in the corner, so I had a corner edge to lean against.  And, plenty of leg room!

And, it must be said, the acoustics were outstanding, even in this weird eave.

I saw Teddy Thompson open for his father about ten years ago in Princeton.  He played songs from his then new album and sang some songs with his father. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: August 10, 2022] Guster [rescheduled from January 14, 2021, I guess]

Back in January, Guster was supposed to play the Wellmont (after postponing a seated acoustic show in 2020).

This show seems to have been the rescheduled show–does it even matter at this point?

The show sold out and we had pretty good seats.  Seats? For a  Guster show?  The seats thing proved to be the real downfall honestly because I was seated behind a freaking behemoth of a guy.  The entire row was full of normal sized people and this hulking dude who clearly did not care about Guster. What a travesty that was.

The guys came out to raucous applause and they opened with “Careful.”  Surprisingly, this was only the third time we’d seen them play this.  By the way, this was our ninth Guster show, we are definitely getting into territory where if they play anything we haven’t seen before we will be surprised.

Ryan was wearing one of his new wild fruit suits and looked wonderful. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: August 10, 2022] Laura Stevenson [rescheduled from January 14, 2021, I guess]

Back in January, Guster was supposed to play the Wellmont (after postponing a seated acoustic show in 2020).  Ben Kweller was supposed to open that show, which would have ben pretty fun as I don’t really know him very well, but I know he is tangentially related to Guster.

For this new show, Laura Stevenson was the opening act.

I only new Laura a little–from a Tiny Desk concert many many years ago, which I enjoyed.

I assumed she’d be fun–Guster tends to have good opening acts.

But we had a terrible time getting to the show and parking for some reason. Usually it’s not a problem parking in Montclair, but this show (which was sold out–good for Guster, but bad for us, I guess), made Montclair really crowded.

It seemed to take a long time to get in. (more…)

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[POSTPONED: January 14, 2021] Guster / Ben Kweller [moved to August 10, 2022]

indexCOME ON!

In March of last year, Guster was supposed to come to NJ to play An Evening of Acoustic Music & Improv–a tour that had been going great.

Then it was cancelled.

The band waited almost a year to reschedule a NJ show–who knows if they were going to do an acoustic show or not.  (Probably not as the last show all tickets were seated).

And then the jackasses who didn’t get vaccinated caused the virus to mutate and infect all of us.

I tested positive last week and tonight was going to be the date I was allowed back into society.  I don’t blame the band for cancelling–literally everyone is catching it.  I blame the idiots who trust Facebook more than science.

Who knows when they’ll want to come back–although come back they will because Guster doesn’t give up!

UPDATE: Until Maryann commented, I didn’t realize (or I forgot) there was a special guest (I didn’t look at this poster very clearly, obviously).  I know Ben Kweller from the compilation The Bens, which has Ben Folds and Ben Lee on it.  I didn’t think I knew much else from Ben Kweller, until I just saw that he sings lead on “I Hope Tomorrow is LIke Today.” which, how did I not know that?

I hope that he is still the opener for the rescheduled date.

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[POSTPONED: October 17, 2021] Ministry / Helmet / Front Line Assembly [rescheduled from July 18, 2020, April 17, 2021; moved to March 9, 2022]

indexOut of the blue, and very close to the time of the shows, this tour was cancelled and postponed until next year.

The lineup has completely changed as well.  Initially, the support was from KMFDM an Front Line Assembly.  Then KMFDM was replaced with Helmet.  Now for the show next year, we have The Melvins and Corrosion of Conformity.  I had pretty much decided i wasn’t going to go to this show anyhow, but it always lingered in the back of my mind as something I might want to do.  Of course, I’d much rather go to the Wellmont than Franklin Music hall, so it’s unlikely I’d go to this show anyhow.

~~~~

This show was moved to April which seemed reasonable at the time.  I see now that it has been pushed back to October which actually seems optimistic.  I am very bummed to see that KMFDM is no longer on the tour, as They would have been a great opener.  I like Helmet, but I think KMFDM would have been more fun.  If I’m going to one of these two shows (Montclair being the other one) it would certainly Montclair.

I’ve been a fan of Ministry for decades.  I even liked the first album With Sympathy (and listen to it now more than their hardercore stuff).  But when Land of Rape and Honey came out, it was the most intense thing in the world. It was incredible.

They put out a series of great heavy albums, although by 1999’s Filth Pig either I stopped enjoying it or they just weren’t as good.

So I guess it has been two decades since I cared about Ministry.  However, Al Jourgensen and his band keep touring and, since I’ve seen Slayer now, I thought I should see what a ministry experience is like.

I wanted to go to their show in 2018, (I was really interested in seeing opening band Igorr) but the date just didn’t work for me.

Although I hadn’t yet gotten tickets for this show, I was looking forward to this retro bill.

I liked KMFDM more in theory than actually listening to them–I have one album I think). But I always appreciated them (especially the joke that their initials stand for Kill Mother Fucking Depeche Mode–actually it is Kein Mehrheit Für Die Mitleid, “no pity for the majority”).  Only one guy is still in the band, but I’d be curious to see what their proto-Rammstein show would be like.

Front Line Assembly was one of the few bands on the industrial label Waxtrax that I never really got into.  I liked many bands on the label, but really never had much exposure to FLA (in the days before you could listen to things online).   I’m curious what 1980s industrial music sounds like in 2020.

Now that I see that the show is also going to be at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, I will definitely try to get to that one instead.

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[POSTPONED: October 16, 2021] Ministry / Helmet / Front Line Assembly [rescheduled from July 18, 2020, April 16, 2021; moved to March 12, 2022]

indexOut of the blue, and very close to the time of the shows, this tour was cancelled and postponed until next year.

The lineup has completely changed as well.  Initially, the support was from KMFDM an Front Line Assembly.  Then KMFDM was replaced with Helmet.  Now for the show next year, we have The Melvins and Corrosion of Conformity.  I had pretty much decided i wasn’t going to go to this show anyhow, but it always lingered in the back of my mind as something I might want to do.  Of course, I’d much rather go to the Wellmont than Franklin Music Hall, although I’m in no rush to get tickets for this.

~~~~

This show was moved to April which seemed reasonable at the time.  I see now that it has been pushed back to October which actually seems optimistic.  I am very bummed to see that KMFDM is no longer on the tour, as They would have been a great opener.  I like Helmet, but I think KMFDM would have been more fun.  If I’m going to one of these two shows (Philly the other one) it would certainly be this one.

I’ve been a fan of Ministry for decades.  I even liked the first album With Sympathy (and listen to it now more than their hardercore stuff).  But when Land of Rape and Honey came out, it was the most intense thing in the world. It was incredible.

They put out a series of great heavy albums, although by 1999’s Filth Pig either I stopped enjoying it or they just weren’t as good.

So I guess it has been two decades since I cared about Ministry.  However, Al Jourgensen and his band keep touring and, since I’ve seen Slayer now, I thought I should see what a ministry experience is like.

I wanted to go to their show in 2018, (I was really interested in seeing opening band Igorr) but the date just didn’t work for me.

Although I hadn’t yet gotten tickets for this show, I was looking forward to this retro bill.

I liked KMFDM more in theory than actually listening to them–I have one album I think). But I always appreciated them (especially the joke that their initials stand for Kill Mother Fucking Depeche Mode–actually it is Kein Mehrheit Für Die Mitleid, “no pity for the majority”).  Only one guy is still in the band, but I’d be curious to see what their proto-Rammstein show would be like.

Front Line Assembly was one of the few bands on the industrial label Waxtrax that I never really got into.  I liked many bands on the label, but really never had much exposure to FLA (in the days before you could listen to things online).   I’m curious what 1980s industrial music sounds like in 2020.

Now that I see that the show is also going to be at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, I will definitely try to get to that one instead.

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[DIDN’T ATTEND: October 7, 8, 9, 2021Joe Russo’s Almost Dead [rescheduled from September 24, 2020]

I don’t actually know Joe Russo’s Almost Dead.  The only thing I really know about them is that Marco Benevento is the pianist for the band.  Honestly that’s good enough for me.

They are playing three nights in Montclair and two of them sold out almost immediately.

It didn’t actually occur to me that the Dead in the band name is a Grateful Dead reference.  But I see that JRAD is like a Grateful Dead cover band plus more.  They are known for their intermingling of the Grateful Dead’s recognizable folk-rock and Americana sound with more contemporary Progressive Rock and Jazz Fusion influences.

So I had a lot going on that week and decided I didn’t need to see a Grateful Dead band.  Especially since I don’t especially like the Dead (althouh it’s more their recording sound (too tinny) than their songs.  But according to GratefulWeb, the run was a hit. (more…)

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[POSTPONED: April 17, 2021] Ministry / KMFDM / Front Line Assembly [rescheduled from July 18, 2020; moved to October 17, 2021]

indexThis show was moved to April which seemed reasonable at the time.  I see now that it has been pushed back to October which actually seems optimistic.  I am very bummed to see that KMFDM is no longer on the tour, as They would have been a great opener.  I like Helmet, but I think KMFDM would have been more fun.  If I’m going to one of these two shows (Montclair being the other one) it would certainly Montclair.

I’ve been a fan of Ministry for decades.  I even liked the first album With Sympathy (and listen to it now more than their hardercore stuff).  But when Land of Rape and Honey came out, it was the most intense thing in the world. It was incredible.

They put out a series of great heavy albums, although by 1999’s Filth Pig either I stopped enjoying it or they just weren’t as good.

So I guess it has been two decades since I cared about Ministry.  However, Al Jourgensen and his band keep touring and, since I’ve seen Slayer now, I thought I should see what a ministry experience is like.

I wanted to go to their show in 2018, (I was really interested in seeing opening band Igorr) but the date just didn’t work for me.

Although I hadn’t yet gotten tickets for this show, I was looking forward to this retro bill.

I liked KMFDM more in theory than actually listening to them–I have one album I think). But I always appreciated them (especially the joke that their initials stand for Kill Mother Fucking Depeche Mode–actually it is Kein Mehrheit Für Die Mitleid, “no pity for the majority”).  Only one guy is still in the band, but I’d be curious to see what their proto-Rammstein show would be like.

Front Line Assembly was one of the few bands on the industrial label Waxtrax that I never really got into.  I liked many bands on the label, but really never had much exposure to FLA (in the days before you could listen to things online).   I’m curious what 1980s industrial music sounds like in 2020.

Now that I see that the show is also going to be at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, I will definitely try to get to that one instead.

Read Full Post »

[POSTPONED: April 16, 2021] Ministry / KMFDM / Helmet / Front Line Assembly [rescheduled from July 18, 2020; moved to October 16, 2021]

indexThis show was moved to April which seemed reasonable at the time.  I see now that it has been pushed back to October which actually seems optimistic.  I am very bummed to see that KMFDM is no longer on the tour, as They would have been a great opener.  I like Helmet, but I think KMFDM would have been more fun.  If I’m going to one of these two shows (Philly the other one) it would certainly be this one.

I’ve been a fan of Ministry for decades.  I even liked the first album With Sympathy (and listen to it now more than their hardercore stuff).  But when Land of Rape and Honey came out, it was the most intense thing in the world. It was incredible.

They put out a series of great heavy albums, although by 1999’s Filth Pig either I stopped enjoying it or they just weren’t as good.

So I guess it has been two decades since I cared about Ministry.  However, Al Jourgensen and his band keep touring and, since I’ve seen Slayer now, I thought I should see what a ministry experience is like.

I wanted to go to their show in 2018, (I was really interested in seeing opening band Igorr) but the date just didn’t work for me.

Although I hadn’t yet gotten tickets for this show, I was looking forward to this retro bill.

I liked KMFDM more in theory than actually listening to them–I have one album I think). But I always appreciated them (especially the joke that their initials stand for Kill Mother Fucking Depeche Mode–actually it is Kein Mehrheit Für Die Mitleid, “no pity for the majority”).  Only one guy is still in the band, but I’d be curious to see what their proto-Rammstein show would be like.

Front Line Assembly was one of the few bands on the industrial label Waxtrax that I never really got into.  I liked many bands on the label, but really never had much exposure to FLA (in the days before you could listen to things online).   I’m curious what 1980s industrial music sounds like in 2020.

Now that I see that the show is also going to be at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, I will definitely try to get to that one instead.

Read Full Post »

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