Sunday, September 25, 2016

Foals @ The Paramount Theatre (9/23/2016)

With this being my third event at The Paramount in four nights (Sigur Rós, Neil DeGrasse Tyson), I feel like I live at the place this week...

Sitting for a Foals show is an interesting experience, as they put on a pretty energetic performance. It's a little tougher to tap into that energy from a seat in the mezzanine. Don't get me wrong, though - (being an "old man") I generally prefer sitting to standing.

The light show matches the kind of energy that the band, especially Yannis, puts into the show. To expand on that a bit, most of the band is generally not jumping all around constantly, but they're still going at it. Yannis definitely moves around more than the others (twirls, hops, etc), and ventures out into the crowd (sometimes crowd-surfing) at least once a show. The light show for this tour is heavy on strobe effects, especially when the band is going hard.

My main complaint about the show is that they apparently don't like playing my favorite songs by them. I tend to prefer their "mathier" stuff, but they seem to mostly like to rock out. That's fine, too, but I would like it if they played more than one from my top five.

Rating: 4.4/5

Thursday, September 22, 2016

An Evening With Sigur Rós @ The Paramount Theatre (9/20/2016)

As an "an evening with" show, there was no opener. Galen, Erin, and I arrived a couple of minutes after the 8:30 beginning. The show came in two parts, each lasting about an hour, with a 20 minute intermission.

The first part was slower, softer, and had more songs that I didn't recognize/recall - I didn't do much "prep" for the show besides listen to my two favorite albums of theirs (Takk... and Kveikur). The second part was more dynamic - which is my preference for their stuff - and had a couple of my jams, including Sæglópur. Somewhat unfortunately, though, I would estimate that they only played 3 or 4 of my top 10 favorite songs by them. The setlist also seemed to span the entirety of their catalog.

As was expected based on the Twitter chatter, their stage set-up was pretty amazing. They had lights or light strips on just about everything. They also had two big screens displaying stuff - one really big one all the way in the back, and another not-as-big partially see-through one that moved up/down and could serve as either a backdrop or a facade. Of course, the screens don't really add much unless they are displaying something cool or interesting, and they had plenty of that. For at least half of the songs I really wanted to take a picture to capture the feel of the chosen light/graphics scheme, but I didn't want to be "that guy" who was only snapping pics and not enjoying the show.

A random observation: there was no on-stage banter at all - they just performed the song. I'm not sure if it's for artistic reasons or because they're not native English speakers (though I know that Jónsi speaks at least decent English). They did do a double bow for the standing ovation at the end, though.

Rating: 4.5/5

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Bloc Party @ Neptune Theatre (9/17/2016)

More random thoughts...

Showtime was a relatively late 9 PM. Kasey and I arrived a little after the opening act got on. Bloc Party started a little before 10:15. They played two half sets, though the first "half" was longer than the second. I thought that the second "half" was going to be an encore, not that the break was an intermission. They did end up coming out for a one song encore after the second "half".

They played a lot of older material, which I think the audience (myself included) was happy with. I guess they realize that the new stuff is not as strong, or at least not as appreciated.

Kele seemed more stacked (physically) than I recalled - I remember him as being fairly skinny.

Overall, the show was a little better than I expected. I hadn't listened to any of their stuff recently to reacquaint myself with it. But a lot of it sprung back when they played it.

Rating: 4.2/5