Tuesday, March 16, 2004

the Whips, the Living End, Jet, the Vines (03.15.04)

the Band: the Whips, the Living End, Jet, the Vines
the Date: Monday March 15, 2004
the Venue: 9:30 Club (DC)

(Photo credit to Ziv Kruger and his Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/people/zeeev/)

It was the Aussie Invasion Tour, a trio of rock bands from the land down under playing the 9:30 Club.

Before we got to the Aussies, first up for a short set was the Whips, a local DC group (and, the only non-Aussie band). They had the tough job of warming up for the imports. Ripping through a quick 40 minute set, these guys did a great job.

Next up was The Living End. I hadn’t heard of them before, but apparently they have a pretty good fan base. It was cool to see a three-piece punk band with an upright bass. These guys rocked out hitting some fan favorites such as Save the Day and From Here on In. A group in the tradition of good ole punk, they were a fitting intro for the other Aussie bands.

Jet was next. Comprised of Cameron Muncey (guitar), Mark Wilson (bass), and brothers Nic (vocals/guitar) and Chris Cester (drums), this band was getting tons and tons of media hype. I mean, the commercial playing their tune, Are You Gonna Be My Girl? almost convinced me to buy an iPod! They completely rocked. Of course, their hits, Are You Gonna Be My Girl? and Cold Hard Bitch had the crowd screaming for more. Their hour-plus set flew by much too quickly. The band seemed genuinely excited to be playing as well and really into the tour as they came out on the balcony to watch both the Living End and the Vines. Nice!

(Photo credit to Joel Levy and his Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/people/joelstedylevy/)

The Vines closed out the night as the headliners. The band consists of Craig Nicholls (vocals/guitar), Patrick Matthews (bass), Hamish Rosser (drums), and Ryan Griffiths (guitar). I’ve been a fan of this band since the release of their debut album, Highly Evolved. They ripped through an hour plus set list of their tunes. Most of the songs came from their newest album, Winning Days, but they played older tunes too. My favorites included Autumn Shade, Outtathaway!, Mary Jane, Ride, Get Free (of course), and Winning Days.

The winning days are gone because I know just where I’m seeing . . .

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

the Sounds, the Strokes (03.09.04)

the Band: the Sounds, the Strokes
the Date: Tuesday March 9, 2004
the Venue: Nation (DC)

(Photo credit to Rachel Goldstar and her Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/people/rachelgoldstar/)

The Sounds opened. They are a Swedish rock band … kind of reminded me of Blondie. Their front gal, Maja Ivarsson (vocals), is backed by solid band consisting of Felix Rodriguez (guitar), Jesper Anderberg (keyboards), Johan Bengtsson (bass), and Fredrik Nilsson (drums). They were great.

(Photo credit to Alexia and her Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/people/fantaraxia/)

The Strokes were kicking off a tour in support of their sophomore album, Room On Fire. Since I first saw these guys back in 2002, I’ve been a big fan and had been looking forward to this show. These New Yorkers, Julian Casablancas (vocals), Albert Hammond, Jr. (guitar), Nick Valensi (guitar), Nikolai Fraiture (bass), and Fabrizio Moretti (drums), put on a great show.

Whether it was the energetic crowd (unusual for DC) or because they were kicking off a new tour, the Strokes were really into the audience and into their music. There was a lot of interaction between front-man, Julian (who’s typically stoic), and the crowd … at one point he was taking requests. Julian even went so far as to leave the stage during The Modern Age, climbing halfway into the crowd directly in front to be greeted by fans eager to touch the singer. By the song’s end, he was fully immersed in the crowd. The Strokes played a long amazing set, introduced several false endings, and did not return for an encore. That’s okay though, cuz we all left completely satisfied. Awesome!

Full setlist (not for this show, but for a show around this time … sorry, best I can do): The End Has No End / Under Control / Automatic Stop / You Talk Way Too Much / Someday / The Way It Is / 12:51 / New York City Cops / Hard To Explain / Trying Your Luck / Soma / The Modern Age / Meet Me In The Bathroom / I Can’t Win / Reptilia / Last Nite / Alone, Together / What Ever Happened? / When It Started / Barely Legal / Is This It? / Take It Or Leave It

I wanna be forgotten
And I don’t wanna be reminded . . .