Do you want to know the dark truth...
or do you want to see me whack some dingers?

Nov 29 2006

Gettin' Lucky In Kentucky

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First of all let me say My Morning Jacket are a great live band. They are insanely tight, Jim James' voice is other-worldly, they're incredibly loud and absolutely pulverize their riffs when they feel like it. They've obviously worked many long hours on their live show. They're ready for amphitheaters right now. They wouldn't have to change their show at all, just get a few more lights and maybe a big backdrop. I'm not going to be able to say anything about their live performance that you haven't already read somewhere else. Oh wait, here is something you probably haven't read anywhere else. Those cool boots that Jim James wears? They're held together by clear plastic tape.

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That said, they're really not for me. I like carefully crafted four minute, verse-chorus-verse pop songs. MMJ obviously don't play this game. I really enjoyed the few songs I recognized, "The Way That He Sings" - a complete surprise - was borderline incredible, but they really lost me when they would veer into improvised-instrumental jam land. And that's not really their fault, they just really reminded me of every one of the hundreds of truly shitty "jam bands" I was forced to endure while going to college in Eastern North Carolina. When I hear that type of music, I start grinding my teeth and looking for sharp objects to stick in my ears. Ms. Smith and I ended up leaving just before the end of the regular set.

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The Slip were the perfect opener for this tour. They're like a lo-fi Secret Machines that wear funny hats. I enjoyed their set, especially the "Baba O'Reilly" cover at the end. If you're heading out to this show, go early and check them out.

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I had a hard time really enjoying the show for other reasons. It was really effing hot in the venue and it was easily one of the most crowded shows I ever been to in the 9:30. It was shoulder to shoulder from the stage barrier to the sound board and from bar to bar. I did score a photo pass and after wading through the sea of people on my way up front, I was jump-up-and-down-happy when I found out there was a barrier in front of the stage. The lighting for The Slip was great. I got some good shots during their set. The lighting during MMJ was another story. They were almost entirely back-lit and when not running around the stage and head banging everywhere, JJ just stood at the mic and sang while his hair was falling down into his face. And when he did step away from the mic for a break, it was always in the corner of the stage where there was no light. For my purposes, the lighting for The Slip was much better. Oh well. I managed a few decent shots I think. Still, hooray for MMJ for the photo pit. I wish more bands would have them at the 9:30.

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Posted by Kyle in Photos | Permalink

Comments

I hear you on the jam band thing - I wanted to cut the fingers off of 90% of the bands that played the Attic. I, however, am a sucker for My Morning Jacket and have been from the beginning. They fooled me. Their first album is full of great, catchy pop songs. Then I saw them live (in 1999, I think, playing to only a few people at an after-hours show at the record store where I worked) and they transformed those songs into grandiose southern rock anthems. And it was great, as were the rest of the times I saw them. I skipped this tour, though, for some reason.

Posted by: Dan at November 30, 2006 5:56 PM

how does one score a photo pass at the 930 club? i was at that show and took some pics with my digital but most are blurry because of the long exposure times. what kind of gear were you using? your shots look pretty good!

Posted by: darren at December 5, 2006 12:04 AM

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