October 24 2006

Zox/Bedouin Soundclash/Whitest Kids U’Know/Flogging Molly

I didn’t get to head to The Blue Note as early as I wanted, which resulted in my first Taco Bell meal in 3 years…I remember why I quit eating it, but I still got excellent seats. My friend and I got the furthest forward balcony seats on the side, so were maybe 15 feet from the stage, and above the amazing crush of people on the floor.

Zox – You know, I was really expecting to be bored with them, but they were saved by one amazing talent/presence, their violin player, Spencer Swain. Someone seems to have forgotten to tell him violin players aren’t supposed to bounce all over the stage, run his instrument through effects pedals, and play “air guitar” with it when not his part. Although, in an attempt to tone down the band, the bass player, Dan Edinberg, hardly moves and looks like he’s still a freshman in college with no clue how he got in a band. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a solid musician, just not exactly an eye-catching presence. John Zox, the drummer, looks like he’s ready to jump on a surf board, and the lead singer, Eli Miller, looks a bit to much like Justin Guarini, first runner-up on the first season of American Idol, for comfort.

All comments aside, they were well put together, good clean sound and fun to watch. Well worth seeing.

The Whitest Kids U’Know – I wondered how they were going to pull off 4 acts and I guessed correctly! Go me! In between the bands, The Whitest Kids U’Know would show us clips of their upcoming show on Fuse. Good use of time since watching bands change out equipment is quite boring. The majority of their humor is not repeatable here, but let’s just say the “iPod shuffle-mistaken-for-a-pregnancy-test” sketch killed me. I will be checking out their show for sure.

Bedouin Soundclash – You know, I was really expecting to like Bedouin Soundclash… I didn’t. It was 40 minutes of pure pain. I liked their albums, but they are for sure a “studio band”. That’s to say, they’re a band that benefits heavily from the abilities of a good mixer in the production booth of the recording studio. Jay Malinowski their…”singer”…has a cracking voice and covers up his total lack of vocal talent with as many echo effects as he can add. The bass player, Eon Sinclair, has to be the single most boring performer I have ever seen. Way to nail down that foot shuffle, Eon! You had me enthralled!

I wandered off during their set to hit the bathroom and grab another Guinness, odd how many guys were in the bathroom, all bemoaning the audio horror that had been unleashed upon us. Many speculations of how they even got signed abounded. I couldn’t agree more. One of the absolute worse bands I have ever seen live.

The Whitest Kids U’Know, 2nd set – Super Size Me With Whiskey…genius. The disturbing song about how kids can “get a new daddy”…wow. This show is SO for me.

Flogging Molly – The pain of Soundclash was quickly forgotten as Flogging Molly took us on a non-stop tour de force of their body of work. Taking few breaks between songs, and letting them slide organically in to one another, just built the energy that much faster. I came away from this show having nearly lost my voice to the many sing-alongs. From opening with Another Bag Of Bricks (one of my personal faves) to closing the encore with The Seven Deadly Sins, this band epitomizes everything I want from a concert; tight sound, unstoppable energy, and an obvious love for what they are doing. This easily ranked as one of my all time favorite performances by any band. If this band is ever near you, they are a must-see. One word to the wise though…don’t stand on the floor unless you like being beaten senseless by the mosh pit.

As an aside, to The Blue Note….HOW could you run out of GUINNESS before Flogging Molly had played even one song?!? If any band ever screamed “Hey, we should lay in X amount of Guinness, and then triple that order!”, it’s Flogging Molly! And to their security…you guys really suck. I am so thankful I wasn’t on the floor for this show. You know those signs you had up about “Absolutely no crowd surfing!”? How about enforcing that? And when you saw the two girls fall and not get up for 3 minutes, did you think to jump in and try to help them? They were within reach. Idiots.

Overall, a fun night, and Flogging Molly was worth it all.

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