A Concert Review

I went to Music Midtown in my former home of Atlanta this weekend and while, for me, it wasn’t as mind blowing as last year (which set the bar REALLY high with Garbage, Ludacris, Florence + The Machine, and PearlJam) it was an awesome show.
The concert technically started at 4 in the afternoon with local band Drivin and Cryin, which I would have liked to have seen. I’m assuming they were so early on the bill because most Drivin and Cryin fans eat dinner at 5 and are in bed by 7. I wonder if they sold and early bird special pass. We did get there in time, however, to see the two big acts of the night, Jane’s Addiction and Journey.
Jane’s Addiction was an amazing super sexy show. I only know 2 or 3 Jane’s Addiction songs (and I actually really hate Jane Says) so I was unsure how much I’d really like them. I voted to go see Cake, who was playing at the same time, instead. But the stage show and their presence was so great that it didn’t matter to me. And I heard Cake sucked. Perry Farrell looks like he’s gotten off the smack and bulked up a little. Or at least that his new tequila endorsements are paying him enough to eat and join Crossfit. He still wears chokers and lots of random silver jewelry circa 96 (side note- he reminded me of this uber-hip tall guy in high school who put out a zine full of bad poetry and ambiguously intentional phallic drawings. He always wore these weird leather straps around his hands. They served no purpose. It infuriated me.) Also, I never thought makeup on a dude could look so hot as Dave Navarro’s heavy raccoon eyeliner. I saw Dave’s really awful tattoo reality competition, Ink Master the next day and he didn’t have the makeup on. Not as hot. Eat your heart out Adam Lambert and Avril Levigne. They had two girls gagged and doing some sexy dirty dancing up and down Dave and Perry’s legs. Red lights. Rock and Roll. Buff shirtless dudes. I seriously was still so hot the next morning that I woke Boyfriend up for a little quality time.
If hotness has an antidote, it’s Journey. Going into the festival, Journey excited me most. We saw them a year or so ago playing with Night Ranger and Foreigner at Lakewood Amphitheater. Thinking back on it, maybe Journey wasn’t that good that night either. Maybe I was still high off of the blazing set that Foreigner did complete with epic power ballads and 80s animations. They were shooting stars. Foreigner really stole the show that night. Well, Foreigner and the girl behind us giving her man a handy under his jacket.
This time Journey started strong with three awesome classic songs. It never ceases to amaze me how much the new guy sounds just like Steve Perry. Then they started playing crap from their new album to prove that they are still artistically relevant. The thing is, they’re not. They’re a cover band of themselves. Just play the shit everyone knows and loves. “I’m so sick of Lovin’ Touchin’ Squeezin’, I really want to hear some of Journey’s new stuff from that CD I got on sale at Best Buy” said no one ever. We eventually decided that we were hungry and could get beers for less than $10 each someplace else, so we headed out with the rest of the masses uninterested in New Journey. Of course as soon as we crossed the street on the way to the bar they started playing Wheel In The Sky which I assume led into a great set of songs that rewarded the patient for listening to the other crap. That’s a reward I’ll do without.
Saturday we got to the show a little later than expected and the line to get in was insane. Luckily we were standing right next to the stage where Weezer was playing and still got to listen to their fun poppy goodness. The whole line, thousands of us, started singing along to Holiday. (hip hip!) We caught the end of the show inside and it was really fun. Sometimes I forget how much I like Weezer.
It rained all day Saturday so we spent time in between the sets watching people mudslide down a hill. Invest in a pair of rain boots friends. I would not have made it through the day without them. Also, early 90s fashion is back. What’s up with Mom jean shorts? I’m not pleased with this trend. I was just getting used to skinny jeans. Is Gap going to bring back, the most universally unflattering cut of all, Reverse Fit?
Imagine Dragons was next and holy crap they were awesome. Squee1313 sent me the Imagine Dragons CD a while back (I still use CDs in my car. Antiquated I know. I also only have an iPhone 4. Most of my students have better phones than me. They’re 10) First, I didn’t realize how many of their songs I knew. Second, I kind of agreed with her assessment that they sounded a little Coldplay-ish. Live though, they have much more of a Killers vibe and when lead singer Dan Reynolds said they were from Vegas I was intrigued. Turns out, thanks to the old trusty Wikipedia, Imagine Dragons has in the past recorded at The Killer’s Battle Born studio outside of Vegas. Well what do you know. Anyway, they had huge drums on the stage and made all of the songs very percussion heavy. They were much more rock in person than on the CD. I think they were my favorite of the day. I mean, I like the CD but their performance really surprised me and I like them even more now.
The Yeah Yeah Yeahs were next.  Karen O wore a very impressive sparkly suit that reminded me a lot of David Bowie/ Elton John. We stuck around long enough to hear Off With Your Head which was great and totally got me dancing around along with the rest of the crowd, but I could tell Boyfriend wasn’t really into them and I only know that song and Maps, so I conceded and we left to find some food. After sustenance, we came back to Queens of the Stone Age which didn’t really wow me. It was a little boring and generic. To be fair, we were really far away from the stage and maybe I just didn’t pick up on the energy. I think our stage proximity for a lot of the shows left me feeling less enthusiastic about this year than last. We stood so close for all of the bands I wanted to see last year and being in the thick of the crowd, in all that excitement, can make a less interesting band really fun.
Red Hot Chili Peppers was the big headliner and they put on a really good show. I didn’t realize Flea does most of the talking. Boyfriend said that for a long time he didn’t know Anthony Kiedis could even speak English. He just doesn’t say much. They were a lot of fun to watch because they bantered and picked on each other like old friends do. You could feel the history between them. The graphics and animations on the big screens on the stage were a lot of fun to watch; lots of colors and special effects. They played all of the songs you’d expect. My friend said “I think they’re better than Pearl Jam last year”to which I heartily disagreed, but I just plain like Pearl Jam better. I know that as a high schooler in the mid-90s I’m supposed to love RHCP, but I just never really got into them after BloodSugarSexMagic. I think their songs all sound alike. That aside, they put on an awesome show. About halfway through Kiedis took his shirt off and that made me happy.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. squee1313
    Sep 23, 2013 @ 20:08:49

    If for nothing else, I wish I could have seen Imagine Dragons with those drums. They have a big drum in their video for Radioactive and it looked really cool. Good to know that wasn’t for show. I like drum driven bands a lot, which explains why I like System of a Down and Metalica so much.


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