Roger Clyne & The Peacemakers
Black Sheep
Colorado Springs, CO

How can you not love “Americano” music – particularly when it’s a local show!

Here are a few photos from the show.

Carbon Leaf
KBCO Radio Show
Soiled Dove Underground
Denver, CO

Another GREAT show at the Soiled Dove, which may have the title of my current favorite small venue.

Some photos from the show.

Soiled Dove Underground
Denver, CO

Matt Nathanson
Eddie Kowalczyk of Live
Ed Roland & Joel Kosche of Collective Soul
Chad Wolf & Rickard Göransson of Carolina Liar
Brett Dennen

The Soiled Dove Underground is a trendy, small, intimate venue that holds about 300 people. We arrived about an hour before doors, with about 30 people in front of us in line. This was Alice 105.9 fifth AuNaturAlice show, a few up and coming artists and a few big name artists playing solo/duets acoustic for a the small crowd at the Soiled Dove. AuNaturAlice5 featured two of our favorite artists, Ed Kowalczyk & Matt Nathanson solo acoustic, so we were thrilled to be able to get into the show. Doors finally opened, we made our way in and found a few chairs on the rail at the first tier of seats, this way we had an unobstructed view of the stage and not have to stare up at the stage or deal with being crammed into the tiny tables that are set up on in front of the stage.

Brett Dennen took the stage first, he is has a really interesting tone to his voice and an odd outlook on the world (“the best love story movie ever…Brokeback Mountain”), but his folky sound was enjoyable. We’ll have to pick up his latest album here shortly.

Two guys from Carolina Liar took the stage next. They were another band that we hadn’t heard of. The song writing was very good, but I didn’t dig the singers voice.

Ed Roland & Joel Kosche of Collective Soul took the stage next. Sort of violating the theme of the evening, Joel was playing electric guitar, but he didn’t really look like he wanted to be there anyway. Ed was sick as a dog, coughing “off mic” between lyrics. The first song they played Ed decided he didn’t want to play guitar on it, so he asked if there were any guitar players in the audience. A few folks yelled out, and Ed asked some guy names Jason to come up on stage. He gave him his guitar, showed him the chords to XXX and the three of them started playing XXX. A very cool moment, especially for Jason. When the song ended, Ed took his guitar back, thanked Jason only to strum it to start the next song to find out the guitar was WAY out of tune, he apologized to Jason, tuned it and launched into the next tune.

Ed, or is it Eddie now?, was up next, we were confused as to why he or the Collective Soul guys weren’t headlining, but whatever. Ed came out, said a few words, but was in this zone and belted out 6 Live tracks. He had to rework the guitar work a little so that he could play/sing the songs solo, but it sounded great, he sounded great, I really think Ed needs to continue doing these solo dates and maybe even write/play some new solo material that I can only assume/hope is rolling around in his head or in a notebook somewhere.
I’ve seen Live ~30 times now and except for the very early years, once Ed takes the stage he is focused on singing/playing and doesn’t really interact with the crowd. I can’t tell if he’s stoned/drunk, just in the zone, or introverted, I don’t know what it is. The few times I met his backstage after shows he isn’t very talkative and seems that he would rather be anywhere else but there with a bunch of fans, though he sticks around and meets with every fan that is there. But, when he does interviews, he is more chatty and sometimes pulls back the curtain a bit and gives out little bits of insight to his life or what is going on with the band. I just wonder if this is him, or if this is his interview personality. I just wonder which, if any, of these “Ed’s” is the real one.

Matt Nathanson headlined the night, not sure how he got that slot, Collective Soul and Ed/Live have sold a lot more records than Matt, but Matt probably has the most relevant/current radio songs right now, so maybe that’s how he ended up on the top of the bill. He mentioned that it was awkward to take the stage after guys that have sold “30+ Million records”. Matt was his normal great self, great songs, funny stories, interacting with the crowd between each song. He and Brett did a hysterical cover of Cat Steven’s Wild World to finish off the night.

It was a really amazing night, seeing all the guys in a small club, playing acoustic, telling stories. Top top it all off, the radio station had arranged a meet and greet for anyone who wanted to stick around after the show. After Matt’s set, they closed the curtains, cleared the stage, put up a table and chairs for all seven guys from the 5 bands to sit and sign posters or press kit photos for the ~75 people that stuck around after the show. Sadly, the handlers were rushing people thru the line, so there wasn’t much time to do much more than shake hands, tell them you liked their set, and ask for an autograph. But, still a cool thing that Alice 105.9 and the bands put together for this intimate show. All in all another great night of great music.

A few photos from the show.

House of Blues
Boston, MA

The music gods were watching over us, Snowmageddon passed through Colorado on Thursday evening/Friday morning, so we weren’t sure if we were going to make it out of town or not. We awoke at 3 am to drive to the airport for our 6am flight to Boston. There was no way to tell how much snow fell over night due to the howling wind, some places were bare others had 2+ foot snow drifts. We headed out on to the empty icy roads and made it to the airport. Our flight actually took off on time and we were on our way to Bean Town. We arrive in Boston to sunshine and warmth, a nice change from the ice, snow and 10 degree weather we left behind. We made our way to our hotel on the T, checked in and headed out to explore Back Bay and the MIT area of town. The venue was about a 10 minute walk from our hotel so we headed over about 6pm. The line was pretty long, they opened the doors about 6:45, a little earlier than scheduled. We made our way inside and tried to find where we wanted to be for the show. The crowd in front of the stage was about 4 deep, but we weren’t very interested in being down there, we scoped a spot on the side of the stage along the rail but by the time we got there the spot was taken, so we headed up to the second level and got a spot on the rail near the stage, a great view of the stage from above and great sound since we were at eye/ear level with the speak stack.

The opening band, Bare Hands?, has musical talent, however, the lead singer…shouldn’t sing. He was awful, but the band sounded pretty good, kind of a Killers, Modest Mouse, Franz Ferdinand sound. Talking with some friends after the show, they said the drummer is a really nice guy, but the lead singer needs to 1) bathe and 2) sober up some. Advice to the rest of Bare Hands, get a new lead singer.

Even without internet access, I had heard that new songs were played the night before (thanks Dan and Nick) so I was pumped for Live to take the stage. The guys came out to Old Blind Barnabas by The Blind Boys of Alabama over the PA system and launched in to Purifier! I can’t say that the new tracks are my favorites, but it was nice to hear something different than the same old set list. And then the guys rolled into Gas Head, Forever and Top!!! Gas Head was great to hear off of SS and Top simply ROCKED!!! Then the guys settled into the typical set list for a few songs and then broke out, what Ed said was 1 of 2 highlights from his life, #1 the cover of Rolling Stone and this one at #2 writing a song for a decent porno movie, Hold Me Up :guitar: Yes, it sounds like a song from the mid 90s, but it really rocks and makes me wonder why they never released it. I hope they continue to play it in concert. Hearing Hold Me Up made the entire trip from Colorado to Boston totally worth it. The guys really seemed to be having a great time, Ed was sounding great, Pat was doing his Pat thing, we couldn’t see CT or CG very well, but when we could see CT, he was tearing it up and Adam was singing his ass off, very nice. Others have said that the venue sounded good, we could really tell from where we were standing, since the stack was about 10 feet in front of us, but I have to say that Ed’s acoustic guitar was turned up to 11. Blowin’ in the Wind was a nice change of pace and W,D is always an amazing closer. The band left the stage a bit abruptly at the end of W,D but no one moved from where they were standing, I really thought the guys were going to come back out for another song or 2, especially once Old Blind Barnabas came on the PA system again, but alas the house lights went up and security opened the doors.

BTW, it looked like Ed had lyric sheets for Gas Head, Top and BITW taped to his “monitor”, (I added the quotes since the monitor wasn’t plugged into anything.)

Hopefully this is the beginning of something great for the band, they have been in a bit of a rut lately, but playing some new material and breaking out some “old” tunes in concert is a great change and I hope there is more in the works.

Talking with some folks “in the know” after the show, there is a summer tour in the works, Waterboy was rehearsed by the band before Ed arrived from his solo date in NYC, DWY was on the set list but was replaced with W,D, and Adam is doing a small show in PA “soon”.

A few show photos here.

Black Sheep
Colorado Springs, CO

When we saw that Fishbone was coming to Colorado Springs – our first thougt was “Is it that Fishbone?” and then the next thought was “Heck yeah!”

A few photos here.

Nine Inch Nails
Planet Hollywood Casino
Las Vegas, NV

We loved seeing NIN so much at Red Rocks earlier in the season, we jumped at the chance (and the cheep airfare) to head over to Vegas to catch the show again!

A few photos of the show here.

Matt Nathanson
Bluebird Theater
Denver, CO

I was working merch this night, but was able to watch most of the show any way. I had forgotten how much fun Matt’s show are, he is always throwing in riffs from, other bands tunes, telling stories, picking on the audience and leading sing-a-longs. Working merch was interesting, they had 4 of us crammed into this tiny space behind the counter in the lobby. There was a big rush for shirts and CDs at the beginning of the show, but it was pretty quiet the rest of the night. The crowd was a real mix, high school and college kids, middle aged women and several families. Very cool to see parents exposing their kids to live music (or is it the other way around?)

Matt is still touring off of ‘Some MAd Hope’ which is great for him, he is getting a lot of radio play and sold out both Colorado shows on this leg of the tour. I read that he played a new song earlier in the tour, I hope he heads back into the studio soon to record some new tunes.

A recording of the show is up here.

The Denver Post’s review/photo essay is here.

Henry Rollins
Boulder Theater
Boulder, CO

Henry blew into town on the heels of Obama’s win in the presidential election. Henry spoke for nearly 3 hours, stopping only long enough for a single sip of water about half way thru. He talked about his visit to his hometown of DC earlier in the week and spending time with the “Old Gray Heads” reliving the old days, about his first Bad Brains show that he had to make a fake ID to get into. Since he was last here he traveled to Pakistan, Laos, Vietnam and Thailand, he takes in the culture of every country and attempts to show the rest of the world that not all Americans are like our leaders.

As always, it is great to listen to Henry speak, looking forward to seeing him next time around.

Denver Post review and pictures here.

Beastie Boys and Tenacious D
The Fillmore Auditorium
Denver, CO

The D put on a very entertaining show. They aren’t great musicians, but they have fun on stage and you can’t help but be entertained. They played mostly older material from their first CD, they threw in a few newer tracks.

The Beasties brought the house down. The place went nuts from the second they hit the stage until they left. Mixmaster Mike got the crowd wound up and the the MCs took the stage and tore thru 16 classics in just over an hour. The did manage to throw in a few mentions of getting out to Vote. The boys were a little rough around the edges, probably due to the fact that they didn’t practice for this very short 7 date tour. They dropped a segue between ‘Right Right Now Now’ & ‘No Sleep Till Brooklyn’. They broke out the drums and guitars for the encore, but they seemed to have trouble strumming and singing at the same time. Overall a fun show, the B-boys don’t tour that much and The D hasn’t been here in 6? years.

with the Haunted Windchimes
Colorado College – Armstrong Hall
Colorado Springs, CO

I wasn’t sure what to expect from either band – though I knew that Devotchka had done some of the music in ‘Little Miss Sunshine,’ which Brian and I had really enjoyed. And the Haunted Windchimes we knew were from Pueblo (!) and had a cover story done on them a few weeks back in the CS Indy.

I really enjoyed the set by the Haunted Windchimes. Very blues-y and a little dark and “spooky” sounding – they structured their set to build from a few slower songs (a nice warm up for the audience) – to nice and up-tempo by the end of the set. I was sold – and had to pick up their CD on the way out of the show…

Devotchka is interesting… You have to like any band that features a Tuba, and when the tuba player is a woman – who’s tuba is festooned with red and white Christmas lights – and she likes to dance a little while she plays… Well – I think “not something you see very often” fits.

I’m sure that the album mix is good – but I found some of the techniques they use in their music (high distortion on lead vocals) were a bit tough to take live. I swear I could only pick out 3-4 words – regardless of language they were in – in each song…Just hard to tell where the first word stopped and the next word started. But with that being said – they have a great hungarian/gypsy feel and everyone was on their feet at the end of their set grooving along.

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