Monday, October 10, 2005

An awesome weekend + BRMC @ Brick By Brick, 10/7/05

I've been waking up ridiculously early these days or not sleeping much. This was probably one of the best weekends of my life. Me and Jodi had a great time driving down from San Francisco together through LA to Orange County and then on to San Diego. She is the coolest person I've ever met, and it's been great hanging out with her all weekend. She put up with a whole lot from my mom, like when we visited my grandma at a nursing home. I forgot to offer her any money for gas, but I will email her about it later.

We might go see Depeche Mode with the Raveonettes on November 18th, though tickets are $85! It makes me sad that I missed the Raveonettes at the Great American for only $15. Also, she's totally up for seeing Echo & the Bunnymen at the Fillmore for $25, she thought it was a bargain! I agree since The Dandy Warhols are playing there also for $25 and they used to open for the Bunnymen when they toured as Electrafixion in 1995. My brother taped the Dandy Warhols on MadTV doing their single "Smoke It" and we were both amazed by how awful they were. I really thought they were a good band from their last album, I guess having lots of money to build a nice big studio doesn't always produce good music.

Aside from the shows, which were both excellent - though San Diego was clearly better, we also went to Amoeba in Hollywood. I didn't get anything, but she got a cool Anton Corbijn DVD with some excellent videos including a couple by Echo & the Bunnymen! Jodi is also going to help me transfer a bunch of music videos I've collected over the years to DVD.

Here is the review I wrote about the San Diego show:

Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Mark Gardener, Cat Martino
Brick By Brick, San Diego, CA
Friday, October 7, 2005

There must have been something in the air that night... it could have been that it was the 50th Anniversary of Allen Ginsberg's Howl reading. Either way, this must have been the BEST show of B.R.M.C.'s U.S. tour! The only San Diego shows I'd been to before were incidentally B.R.M.C. at Cane's opening for Spiritualized and Mark Gardener with Rob Dickinson and Adam Franklin at M Theory in August.

Brick by Brick is the ideal venue for a BRMC gig with only 250 tickets and 299 room capacity. Needless to say, the place was packed completely and sold out. As we waited in line to pick up our tickets, we saw Spike and Peter outside the venue. We met some hardcore fans who had traveled from LA and SF for the show. We shared some concert going stories while waiting for the show to start.

Cat Martino was walking around before the show and got some compliments on her dress when she got on stage. She has a nice voice, which was accompanied by reverb pedals in a very uplifting sound. She was then joined by Mark Gardener and Danny (?). Mark was a member of Oxford band Ride, who Robert often mentions as a favorite band.

Mark was playing a 12 string acoustic guitar accomplanied by Cat on keyboard and Danny with an acoustic guitar. They both had egg shakers during various songs. The songs were mostly from his solo album These Beautiful Ghosts with a band called Goldrush. There were even a few classic Ride songs like the magnificent "Vapour Trail."

Peter came on stage next solo acoustic versions of Complicated Situation, Fault Line, and Devil's Waitin' - during which he was joined by Robert, Nick, and Spike, who's been playing some of the Howl songs with BRMC. The set list was similar to most of the recent shows leaning heavily on Howl and the first album, with the addition of "Rise or Fall."

Throughout the show, every song was played amazingly well with an absolutely mindblowing version of "Gospel Song" - during which Robert nearly crawled over the speakers at the edge of the stage. The band interacted well with the audience and each other with Robert and Peter playing towards Nick during a few songs.

After the show, we saw Nick playing pool. He made some nice shots and said something in Spanish to us. He mentioned how he hasn't figured out how he should sign his signature and said that Peter and Robert's signatures were much nicer than his.

I didn't mention in this review how much Peter was spitting on stage last night or how I was so close to the stage that Jodi thought Robert might hit me in the head with his bass! It was awesome and I got some great video of "Devil's Waitin'," "Rise or Fall," and "Open Invitation." I've put it up on my site in the public folder already, but it's taking forever to sync up to my iDisk. I've been having tons of problems with my computers lately, which makes my brother think I'm stupid for being a Mac user. It's still easier than dealing with viruses and spyware, which don't affect Macs at all. I got an email from Deelilah from the message board, so I wrote a long detailed email about myself and meeting BRMC a few times. I can forward that email to anyone who is that interested in it. Just leave me a comment with your email.

Oh, and I saw the coolest thing in the liner notes of Ride's Nowhere album. It's my name! If you've ever had a slightly differently spelled name, then you might understand how cool that is. I met Mark Gardener after the LA show and got him to sign all my Ride stuff, but he didn't say anything about my name when he wrote it on his new album. He was very nice, it was really cool to shake his hand. I guess now I should go see Oasis and track down Andy Bell to get my Ride and Hurricane #1 CDs signed. I've quote Hurricane #1 a few times in my various websites. I loved the VW Beetle commercials which had one of their songs as well as Spiritualized in them. That's some effective advertising, though I haven't gotten a Beetle. Maybe if they release a hybrid version and I have to live in So Cal again. I like living in San Francisco too much now, so that won't happen anytime soon.