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Archive for the ‘The Met Philadelphia’ Category

[ATTENDED: January 27, 2020] Illiterate Light

S. and I saw Illiterate Light open for The Head and the Heart back in October.  We were really impressed by them–their power (especially for just two people), their intensity, and their overall sense of fun.  In fact, because of annoying crowd people around me, I enjoyed Illiterate Light more than TH&TH.

I knew that they would be really great to see when they were the headline act, so when they announced a show at Johnny Brenda’s, I quickly got us both a ticket.

The band is a duo with Jeff Gorman on guitar and bass pedals (and what a huge difference those bass pedals make) and Jake Cochran on drums (and dancing).  The dancing is important because unlike most drummers, Cochran plays his drum kit standing up.  This allows him a lot of mobility–he wanders the stage, hangs out with Gorman and hits cymbals from all angles.

We couldn’t help but notice that there were several camera dudes all around the stage.  They told us that they’d be filming this show for some kind of upcoming something or other.  I’m looking forward to seeing it (we’re bound to be in it).  Although there was SO MUCH FOG (which is why my pictures are so hazy) that I have to wonder how good their video will be.

The guys came out and set up their gear (I was amused at how much more stuff Cochran had–I guess since his floor tom is removable?).  Although when Gorman brought in his foot pedals (a cool Moog device) he raised it over his head to much applause. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: December 4, 2019] A Very She & Him Christmas Party

S. and I have a large Christmas album collection.  It’s fun to add a CD a year or so, especially when they are new and interesting.

We’ve enjoyed the two Christmas CDs from She & Him (Zooey Deschanel and M. Ward).  So when it was announced that they’d be coming to Philadelphia (actually starting their mini-tour here), I got tickets right away.

We went in with expectations of a sweet Christmas experience.  And that’s what we got.

They played about 30 songs and the biggest surprise for both of us was just how long the show was.  I assumed 75 minute, but it wound up being almost and hour and 45 minutes.  That’s the holiday spirit! (more…)

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[ATTENDED: December 4, 2019] Pete Lee

Exactly one year ago S. and I attended the Brian Wilson Christmas Special.  This year we were in Philly for the She and Him Christmas Party.  Clearly December 4 is the day for Christmas specials!

A few days before the show (we were the first stop on the tour) it was announced that comedian Pete Lee would be opening the East Coast dates while Patton Oswalt would be opening the West Coast dates.  (It’s not often that I wish I was on the West Coast, but this is one of those times).

I had never heard of Pete Lee. When I looked him up I saw this on his bio:

Pete Lee was the first stand-up comedian to get a standing ovation on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, and it resulted in him appearing on the show three times in the last year.

Interesting.

That’s all I read before the show.  But looking at the bio after the show I see that it really does sum him up pretty well:

Pete’s joyful humor comes from his Midwestern roots. Raised in Janesville, WI by divorced parents and a 19-inch television, he was destined to pursue a career in entertainment.

(more…)

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[ATTENDED: October 8, 2019] The Head and the Heart

After being really impressed by Of Monsters and Men last month, I had pretty high hopes for being impressed by The Head and The Heart as well (because I get the two bands mixed up even though I like them both).

It was the same venue, although this time we had seats instead of the GA section.

It was nice to not worry about your location between acts.  But holy crap, the people around me sucked so bad that they ruined the whole night.  I am writing this ten days after the show and I hate to say that I am still annoyed by them all.

The people next to me came and went and came and went and came and went all while we were seated.

The guy in front of me was an old man (older than me even).  During Illiterate Light we thought it was cute that he and his wife (I assume) were videoing things and being adorable together.  Then during The Head and The Heart he stood up.  And was a freaking giant.  Worse yet, the people next to them didn’t come to the show, so they had a lot of room, which meant he spread out and stood right in front of me (and here I was excited about having empty seats in front of me).  He also filmed nearly every song, but rather than being discrete or considerate of the people behind him, he held yup his camera to his face which meant elbows out thereby blocking even more of my view.  His wife also filmed a lot but she apparently didn’t realize that phone cameras come with a flash, because it was on every time she took videos.  How it took the people in front of them six songs to actually say something (and they were very polite about it) I can’t imagine.

But the worst were the people behind us.  A loud row of eight loud talking, loud boasting, loud everything.  The craziest thing about them is that they were all huge fans of the band, they knew every word, knew when they played a “rare” song and sang along to just about every lyric. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: October 8, 2019] Illiterate Light

I had heard of Illiterate Light from NPR, but didn’t really know them.  They played at Newport Folk Festival but were early on Saturday and we arrived after them.

Traffic getting to this show was terrible and I was annoyed that we’d miss Illiterate Light (or part of their set anyhow).  S. said she didn’t mind missing the opening act as long as we made it for The Head and the Heart.

We walked in just as Illiterate Light took the stage and we got seated around the middle of the first song.  And I couldn’t get over how loud they were (particularly opening for a not-especially-loud band like The Head and the Heart).  They had big rocking guitar and crashing drums.

Then I looked up and realized that there were only two of them on stage. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: October 2, 2019] Tiny Ruins

I had originally planned to see The Tallest Man on Earth at the Met Philly on this night.  But some time ago he cancelled the entire North American tour.  Which is a bummer, since I’d really like to see him.

However, that allowed me to go to that night’s other wonderful offering–Aldous Harding.

Tiny Ruins opened for Aldous.  Tiny ruins is a band from New Zealand led by songwriter Hollie Fullbrook.  In fact, for this tour, Tiny Ruins was only Fullbrook and her guitar.

She came out front and sang about a half dozen songs in her beautiful voice accompanied by her exquisite guitar playing.

She opened with “Tread Softly” and she admitted the words were written by W.B. Yeats.  But she promised that the words for all of the other songs were her own.

I enjoyed listening to Hollie speak, although her accent wasn’t as strong as I imagined it would be. (more…)

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[ATTENDED: September 10, 2019] Of Monsters and Men

Back at Christmas 2011, S. bought me the debut albums by Of Monsters and Men and The Head and the Heart.  I instantly fell in love with both bands (and sometimes can’t tell who is who when I hear one of their songs).  This concert might help me distinguish but we’re also seeing The Head and the Heart in the same venue in a month.

But maybe the spectacle of this show will help me distinguish them.

Because it was a wonderful spectacle.

I love thinking about how this band of six or seven musicians from Iceland somehow conquered the world with their singalong anthems.  It’s also fascinating to me that they only released their third album this year.

I really like the new album.  It sounds a bit different (more synthy, poppy) but it remains very OMAM.

They played a lot from the new album which was fine. In fact, they played 19 songs in total, spanning all of their records, but focusing mainly on their first and third releases. (more…)

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