Concert Review: Death Cab for Cutie with Frightened Rabbit

I know, I know … I’m late. I’m just glad to be writing again. Blugh to the last few weeks, I say. BLUGH!

Having said that, yah. Those guys know how to put on an incredible show. I had heard that they outperform themselves from CD to stage, but man … I wasn’t expecting that. Just to keep the element of surprise as high as possible, I refused to check out any of their concert vids on YouTube. I’m glad I did. I’m also glad I made my own.

Frightened Rabbit is one of the best opening bands I’ve seen in a long, long time. They were almost as good as Death Cab. Not being as familiar with them as I would like, I can’t tell you all the songs they performed, but I know this: every one that they played was amazing. Scott Hutchinson was, in a word, intense. At one point, Gordon Hutchinson–drummer and brother to Scott, screwed up. It was pretty funny. I have vids to post of their set as well, just haven’t done it yet. Anyway, their set was awesome and too short. I’ll figure out the names and post them tonight, probably.

As for Death Cab, well … let’s just say that we’ll see them again. And again. And again … and again. If they play here, we’re going. It was that good. Being way stage right was not at all a let-down, although it made it difficult to get the whole band in the frame at any given time unless Chris wandered over toward the middle, which he did quite a bit, so that was nice. They opened with one of my favorite jams of all time, “I Will Possess Your Heart.” The radio edit does absolutely nothing to justify the CD or live performance. Nick’s simple but rythmic bass line is trance-inducing. Mix that with the piano, guitars and drums, and the result is the perfect mood-setter for what would be an atmospheric evening.

Ben’s voice is as pure in concert as it is on studio recordings. Chris’s is the same. These guys were spot on the whole night. What floors me is just how humble they are. After “Heart,” Ben addressed the crowd, introducing them as “Death Cab for Cutie from Seattle Washington.” Like we didn’t know, right? But how unassuming is that?! “Hi, we’re Death Cab … we’re pretty damn big ya know, but hey–maybe there are some people out there who haven’t heard of us. So, yah–we’re from the Seattle area. Thanks for coming to the show!” That just blew my mind. I mean, you don’t see many bands of their stature saying stuff like that. It’s just … cool. I love a good, humble, grateful band. Especially one that puts as much effort into their music as they do. And they put A LOT into everything. I thought I’d find myself just watching Chris and Ben all night. Ha. I found myself watching Nick and Jason just as much. How could I *not*?! It was a trip down mesmerizing lane, and the road was twisty, bendy, and hilly. LOVED it.

The set list was one of the most diverse I’ve ever seen. They played songs from every CD, including some EPs. Here’s the entire list.

  • I will Possess Your Heart
  • Crooked Teeth
  • Why You’d Want To Live Here
  • Photobooth
  • Doors Unlocked and Open
  • Long Division
  • Grapevine Fires
  • Codes and Keys
  • Summer Skin
  • I Will Follow You into the Dark
  • 405
  • You Are a Tourist
  • A Movie Script Ending
  • Underneath the Sycamore
  • Soul Meets Body
  • Title and Registration
  • Cath
  • We Looked Like Giants
  • Sound of Settling
  • Title Track
  • Pictures in an Exhibition
  • Stay Young Go Dancing
  • Transatlanticism

One of my favorite songs is “We Looked Like Giants.” Here it is:

See what I mean?! They’re amazing live!! I mean, their studio material is amazing too, but their live performances … WOW.

If they come to your part of the world, catch ’em. You will NOT be disappointed.

Kickstarter Project: Ghost Town Jenny

Well, as is so often the case with life, I’m justĀ  now getting back into the writing mode again. Well … okay, blogging mode. I’ve been writing non-stop for the last several months, the bulk of which has been the last two months or so, but that was all work related and not music writing. Now that I have free time again, I’m going to be ramping this up a lot.

One of the things I had been writing about towards the end of June/beginning of July was various Kickstarter projects that I was hoping would get funded. So far, all of them have! However, I’ve also been tracking and funding other projects, such as Ghost Town Jenny. This is the musical child of Kim Kylland out of San Francisco (where a LOT of good music seems to be coming from lately!). She is trying to get to Iceland to perform a show at the Iceland Airwaves music festival. Great music! I love the electronic sound mixed with her ethereal vocals. Her new CD comes out in October, which coincides with the festival.

Anyway, I highly recommend checking out her Kickstarter project. She has lots of great backing rewards at various levels. I opted for the new CD and DVD of the Iceland show. Check it out!

Alive and Kicking

I swear, I’m not dead … thought I’ve felt rather not alive for the last several weeks. Work, you know … 12-13 hour days, working weekends … it’s been unpleasant as far as being able to write here, but things happen. Like when our hardware doesn’t show up forever, so then I get to practice the fine art of “theory writing” as opposed to actual technical writing. There’s a big, big difference. Notebook in hand, watching and/or participating in the set-up and tear-down of equipment, documenting each step … yah. Haven’t gotten to do that, so I’ve had to literally guess what the procedures were. Could not have been more wrong. And it’s frustrating to me for a ton of reasons, but whatever. The good news is that the project is out the door, and I’m semi-relatively-sort of free of that project (until a revision comes along, which I’m sure will be Monday or Tuesday).

Anyway, I’m here, and sort of alive. Much to discuss as far as concerts, new music, Kickstarter projects … lots to write about. Just need to not work 13 hour days.

Speaking of concerts, as one very close to my heart put it on Monday, “A Perfect Circle hasn’t put out new material in 7+ years, yet they still manage to sell out everywhere they play.” Good point. Granted, Kingsbury hall holds just over 1900, but for that matter, APC could have easily played a 19000 seat arena and sold it out. So I guess we were two of the lucky few who got to see the show. And what a show it was. Stand by for the review (FINALLY).

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