June 23, 2011 at 1:09 pm #51669
So the show last night was pretty great!
OFF! began the show and put on a really tight set. I’m not so much of a hardcore fan, but I really enjoyed their energy. Despite being 55, Keith Morris still brought it as a front man. There’s always that risk of coming off as embarrassing when you’re 50+ and playing in a punk band (the Six Pistols most recent reunion comes to mind). He’s certainly lived live by his own rules and that clearly comes out when performing.
I really loved the Dinosaur Jr. and Henry Rollins interview that came next. There were some rude hecklers during parts of it (“Just play!”) and that was unfortunately considering how unique the experience was. Lots of questions about life as a band in the late 80’s as well as the surrounding culture (lots of SST talk). It was really interesting to hear how Rollins’s own experience in the 80’s crossed paths with that of the band. He’s a great interviewer, albeit a bit too serious at times. Weird to see J crack a joke and have Henry remain stone faced.
After a few minutes Dinosaur Jr came out. I was super excited that they opened with “In a Jar” as I had yet to witness them performing that one live, despite seeing them three times before. They then played “The Wagon” before kicking off the Bug set. This is when the crowd really got going. The crowd overall was much different than the first time I saw Dinosaur at the Paradise in 2007- much younger and X’s a plenty on hands. Back in 2007 I felt like I was the only one there with those horrible X’s. With this in mind there was a lot more pushing and shoving going on, something I’m not a fan of. That excessive energy continued throughout the rest of Bug, which surprised me since it was entirely absent for the first two songs and the entirety of OFF!’s set. I also really could have done without the crowd surfers, as most I felt were crowd surfing for the first time and had no idea what they were doing. Legs and feet would flail and you’d need to watch your head to avoid getting kicked. One guy in a white shirt was really being a douche about it. I’m getting too old for this. (I’m 24).
When the time came to play “Don’t”, Lou mentioned that he didn’t have the voice for it tonight and called up two enthusiastic audience members instead to perform the song. This was a bit disappointing as it was apparently Lou who performed it in Portland, yet chose the audience route in Northampton. Given the whole coughing up blood story I’m far from surprised that he’s not performing it consistently, especially considering the time that has passed. I just hope there’s some footage from the Portland gig. Seeing two fans screaming their lungs out was still preferable over a Lou doing a half-assed version (like the way Ween performs “You Fucked Up” now). I wonder how it’ll be for the DC show, as that one will be filmed.
The band came back for an encore with J asking for any requests. Insanely diverse song screaming ensues. I liked some guy’s heckle for “Poledo.” The band just decided to play “Out There” like they did in Portland. Then one girl by me began her extremely impassioned heckling for “The Lung.” I’ve never seen anything like it. The band could barely get a word in over her. She finally stopped when the band began to play it. Crowd reaction to the song was huge, and rightfully so.
So yeah, it was really great show. Not my favorite time seeing them though, particularly due to the crowd. My legs were not doing so well last night after being shoved up against the crotch-level Paradise stage (that’s a whole other story). With playing the album in full this also lead to a lot less band-audience interaction, which I did miss. Lou has some great banter, particularly at Sebadoh shows, and I always look forward to it. Still, it was Dinosaur Jr. playing a ton of songs we haven’t seen them play live before, and that was a wonderful thing. And as always I’m so grateful that I brought earplugs. Most of the 18-20 X’d crowd members weren’t wearing any, which I just can’t wrap my head around. (I highly recommend these – http://www.amazon.com/Etymotic-Research-Protection-Earplugs-Standard/dp/B0044DEESS/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1308848828&sr=8-7)
In a Jar
They Always Come
Yeah We Know
Let It Ride
Don’t (with two audience members)
The Lung (by request of insane heckling girl)June 23, 2011 at 6:29 pm #138417
cool review. i was at the portland show and i bet someone must have “don’t” recorded as I saw countless cell cameras going. i know they usually record the audio at the venue when local bands play . great show! lou’s scream was so fucking loud and evil sounding, i can totally understand not having a voice for three days. it sounded like it maxed the pa system and made it crackle a bit.June 23, 2011 at 9:13 pm #138418
I want to say a big THANKS as well….Matt0009…for taking the time to write a great review of a show that I’m about to go see. I thought you were much older than your 24 years! What, did your parents send you to private school or is it (as we have been led to believe down here) that all those public schools in MA are pretty good? The old pushing and shoving thing that starts about two songs into Dinosaur Jr, was suspiciously absent for any of the openers….I’ve seen that more times than I can count. What is that all about? I guess it’s called “fun”. When that starts, I just have to move back, I’m twice your age and….I don’t want to be kicked in the face or shoved backwards or down or have my spleen stepped on. I’m getting sort of excited to go now. Oh, I did want to say about Keith Morris, I had no idea that he was 55 but he has such a unique persona. We have several musicians around our town who radiate a sort of “Keith Morris” type of vibe. Unfortunately, they always seem to be inspired to pay a visit to your house unannounced for no good reason…. always after you’ve slipped into your night clothes…..and after they leave, you feel strangely impelled to throw your shoes back on and take a tour of your very own property, checking the status of weed-whackers, leaf-blowers, lap-tops and the silver your Granny gave you! That is in no way to imply that Keith Morris, himself, is a bad guy…at all…it’s just…when I saw his little “In the Hands of the Fans” snippet here the other day….Something inside my head went….”Wait, don’t I know you from somewhere” Peace Y’all!June 28, 2011 at 10:35 am #138419
Good review. I felt the same way about how strange it was that the crowd was sedate for the 1st two songs and went nuts (and stayed there) from Freak Scene onwards.
i thought i had posted my review and photos but i couldn’t find it, so here it is:
http://www.prefixmag.com/photos/dinosaur-jr-henry-rollins-off-the-paradise-boston-/June 28, 2011 at 12:56 pm #138420
Hey thanks tinnitus for setting me straight. I’ve seen your photos here for years, (thank you, thank you). I had you in my head as a photographer and didn’t realize that you had written the review as well. I thought another someone had written a review and used your photographs. That was a fantastic read also. It really captured the feeling of the night. I love words and I appreciate those who take the time to press their thoughts into WORDS in order to express their own personal ideas or feelings related to an event or situation. Beautiful……I lick it up like chocolate. I do have to say…I obviously had been living under a moss covered stone but that’s okay with me. It’s very shady and cool under there and I’ll be returning soon. One of my favorite verbal capture of yours from the bug review was this “widdy gem”
(speaking of ending their set with “Don’t”)
“Normally I would have preferred to hear something else, and with the ‘whole LP’ format you get warts and all, but this was a case of the song really fitting a purpose and was a perfect closer.”
When I read it, it made me feel all Pentecostal inside. In my mind, I stood up….pointed at you…and yelled..”The Brother said it!”
Man, that song was so great in Atlanta, J got to get his hippy,trippy,stoner, jam-bandish rambling/noodling guitar effects included rock swagger on….while Mr. Morris did his vocal thing. I was so happy! My son has an alarm clock that plays “white noise” for you. I decided right then and there, on Sunday night…that I could listen to that shit (song) for hours…it was that good!
Thanks tinnitus_photography…June 29, 2011 at 12:05 pm #138421
“Don’t” is the song a lot of people (even hardcore Dino fans) skip when listening to BUG. But it’s good people are having a re-awakening for the song, due to this tour. Unfortunately Lou really blew his voice out after performing it the first night in Portland ME, which makes the need to hear a recording of this show even more essential!
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