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Face Melting

Guns N’ Roses
MetLife Stadium
July 24th, 2016

guns n roses

Still – one of my biggest regrets in life is not seeing the Guns N’ Roses/Metallica tour in ’92.  I’m sure I didn’t miss anything earth-shattering, but I juss soooooo wanted to be there.  Not sure why I couldn’t make it work – be it economics, calendar conflict, being scared of the audience memebers, what have you  

I made up for it by seeing Axl and a bunch of other dudes that weren’t GnRers when they toured in 2006.  Sure, there was no Slash or Duff, but it was MORE than good enough.  It was great enough cause Axl was Axl – at least in voice – but he did look a little (read: A LOT) aged, and metal bands juss don’t age well – physically (and probably mentally too)

Even today, Axl looks worse for wear – and wearing some REALLY dumb hats doesn’t help his cause

toht raiders axl roses guns

but unlike the Nazi from Raiders, Axl is STILL melting faces, not having his own face melted!

Well, hatchets somehow got buried, and Slash and Duff were able to mend whatever burnt fences they had with Axl – lucky us!  Sure, there aint no Izzy or Adler or even Matt Sorum, but c’mon, if we can make do with juss Axl, we can beyond make do with juss Axl and Slash and Duff!  Side note – I’ve always found Duff to be such a pretty man.  He’s beautiful.  I want to play with his hair, as he rocks my world

The trio + some other people, handed in a very quality G n R show… which pretty much resembled the show I saw a decade ago – setlist-wise – although this time they DID play ‘Don’t Cry’, but last night they DIDN’T play ‘Patience’.  Why both aren’t a part of every show – and 3+ Chinese Democracy songs are – is beyond me.  Heck, they coulda even played even longer than they did, and perhaps skipped having an opener, although now I can check Lenny Kravitz off my ‘to see’ list

So, the only question left is, where do we go now?

where do we go now? WHERE???????????????????????????

A video posted by Thigh Master (@thighmaster) on

Setlist – It’s So Easy / Mr. Brownstone / Chinese Democracy / Welcome to the Jungle / Double Talkin’ Jive / Estranged / Live and Let Die (Wings cover) / Rocket Queen / You Could Be Mine / New Rose (The Damned cover) / This I Love / Civil War / Coma / Speak Softly Love (Love Theme From The Godfather, Andy Williams cover) / Sweet Child O’ Mine / Better / Out Ta Get Me / Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd cover) / November Rain / Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door (Bob Dylan cover) / Nightrain

EncoreDon’t Cry / The Seeker (The Who cover) / Paradise City

 

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Love Her Like I Do

Ellie Goulding
Madison Square Garden
June 22nd, 2016

ellie goulding

A few days back, I noticed that Ellie Goulding was playing a(n un-sold out) show at MSG, and then realized how many of her songs I knew, and BAMMMM – a few days later – the wife and I + a hella lot of teenage girls and gay men were sweating to her oldies (cause I don’t really know the new Delirium stuff)!!

LIGHTS!!!!!

the best video you're ever seen of Ellie Goulding's 'Lights' #probablynot

A video posted by Thigh Master (@thighmaster) on

SetlistIntro (Delirium) / Aftertaste / Holding on for Life / Goodness Gracious / Something in the Way You Move / Outside / Devotion / I Do What I Love / Keep on Dancin’/ Don’t Need Nobody / Heal / Explosions / Lights (acoustic) / Army / Lost and Found / Figure 8 / On My Mind / Codes / Don’t Panic / We Can’t Move to This / I Need Your Love / Burn

Encore – Anything Could Happen / Love Me Like You Do

I NEED HER GLOVES!!!

@elliegoulding – I need your glove

A video posted by Thigh Master (@thighmaster) on

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Unfinished Business Time

Flight of The Conchords
The Heath at The McKittrick Hotel
June 1st

conchords poster

THEY BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Well, the never really went away – juss got all big and Hollywooded, but no matter how many riches and fames they’ve accumulated, they will always be good ole Bret and Jemaine, or good ole Jemaine and Bret (depending on how you like to order your favorite Kiwis) of Flight of the Conchords  

After a 3 year break from touring, the boys are about to embark on a big tour, and so they needed to fine tune their roadshow before showing the road, and set up a 5 night residency at the Heath.  For some reason I skipped out on their last tour, so it has been 7 years since I last saw them live, but now I got to see them in a venue that only served 200, and all 200 of us were well served

Sure, B & J sounded a little raw and undisciplined – starting and stopping and restarting tunes new and old, constantly being out of rhythm with one another, but luckily these two can fill dead air and stage hiccups with endless witty stage banter, like Jemaine asking the audience if they actually paid money to see this show [we all happily did].  But none of us cared how unvarnished the presentation was – cause we were all there to laugh with them, and at them (no one does self-deprecating humor like them), and so we did

They tried out 5 to 6 new/newish songs (see setlist below), and while these newbies don’t seem destined top anything they’ve created before, they were good enuff for everyone to sit thru AND thoroughly enjoy.  Most times you don’t want to hear any band play any new stuff, but most bands aren’t this one and that’s both a good thing AND a bad thing.  And the old stuff?  Still AWESOME, after all these years!  Even a song like ‘Bowie’, which was a once a creative lark, is now a song of soulful passion – a valentine to a man they and we love(d), who once fell to earth, but is now back in the stars, forever orbiting in greatness

Maybe one day someone will write a song about how great the Flight of the Conchords are.  That would be some mighty meta stuff there – meta world peace yo!

SetlistChips and Dips^ / The Seagull^ / Foux du Fafa / F**k on the Ceiling^ / The Ballad of Stana^ / Father and Son^ / Think About It / Business Time / Bowie / Shady Rachel^

EncoreThe Most Beautiful Girl (in the Room)

^ not sure of the actual song title – as the songs were new or never released

#BowieInSpace holds more resonance than ever. bless Jemaina & Bret

A video posted by Thigh Master (@thighmaster) on

The boys are back in town #fotc @da_keif @thecristine

A video posted by Lillian Helaine (@lilr86) on

I know I wasn't supposed to take video but this is an old one so its ok. Right? @fotc #flightoftheconchords

A video posted by Kathleen Urvalek (@kurvalek) on

 

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I Just Want To Scream… HELLO!!!

Pearl Jam
Madison Square Garden
May 2nd

my very first (and long overdue) @PearlJam show was more epic than Epic Records #ImStillAlive

A video posted by Thigh Master (@thighmaster) on

It’s never too late to right wrongs.  Never have regrets in life, and if you do, fix them, if they are fixable.

Pearl Jam’s Ten owned the ears of high schoolers everywhere from 1991 onwards.  When grunge was grunge, these guys were like the fringe of grunge – rocking rock that had an edge (but not droning like Soundgarden and Alice In Chains’ music did), and this rock was rock built for the ages.  I LIVED for Ten.  We all did.  It’s not only the perfect debut album, but a perfect album – up their in my mind with the likes of Paul Simon’s Graceland, Pink Floyd’s The Wall, Beasties Boys’ Paul’s Boutique, most albums by The Beatles, and so on and so forth and so onforth

At the height of their and my hysteria, I somehow neglected to see them in concert, which is odd, considering how I saw a LOT of shows as a teen, including the original Smashing Pumpkins line-up, Nine Inch Nails, Fugazi, Alice In Chains, the Beasties Boys 128238823 times, Ice-T, Public Enemy, Urge Overkill, The Soup Dragons, etc.  (My lucky brother saw Pearl Jam open for the Red Hot Chili Peppers AND Smashing Pumpkins in New Orleans, in 1991.  Red Hots are another band I meant to see, and still never have)

Time passed, and then Pearl Jam released their 2nd album – Vs – and while a lovely effort, it was no perfect Ten.  More like a 6?  Probably a 7.  But time has been good to it.  It’s probably an 8 now.  But back then?  A 6.  I was so pissed it wasn’t Ten-2 that by the time their 3rd album dropped – Vitalogy (still a terrible name) – I was done – and for me – Pearl Jam was over.  And while I was done with Pearl Jam, Pearl Jam wasn’t done at all – they were just getting going – releasing 7 albums in my absence, and keeping on keeping on rocking in the free world

Eons passed, beards grew, and then I saw that they were coming to MSG this year, and was like, you know what – I’ve never heard ‘Even Flow’, ‘Jeremy’ or ‘Alive’ (my holy Pearl Jam trinity) played live – not a once, and how could I let this wrong continue to be wrong?  Boom – done – wrong to be righted.  And spank the lord I did, for in 3 hours time, my face melted (like the Nazi in Raiders) with endless and effortless and awesomebest rock n roll, and I couldn’t have asked for a better first Pearl Jam show (OK, I was a little/lot pissed when they played Ten in its entirety two shows before the one I would attend)  

Look at that setlist below!!!  They played THREE songs with ‘man’ in the title, IN A ROW!!  They played BOTH songs from the Singles soundtrack, BACK 2 BACK!!!  They did a cover of Cheap Trick’s ‘Surrender’, WITH 2 DUDES FROM CHEAP TRICK!!  They did a Police cover WITH STING – AND IT DIDN’T PUT ME TO SLEEP (cause Sting is boring).  And after studying setlist after setlist from their 2016 tour, I nailed it when I said they’d do a cover of the Who’s ‘Baba O’Riley’ (which I’ve always wanted to hear them play ever since they played it on MTV in 1992).  The two dudes who came with me to the show (one being Shreddy FCUKING Mercury!!!) each had one request each, and Pearl Jam played both (‘State of Love and Trust’ AND ‘Yellow Ledbetter’).  And they played my holy trinity of ‘Even Flow’, ‘Jeremy’ and ‘Alive’.  Think I enjoyed that?????  See video above!!!!!!!!!

Moral of the story – Pearl Jam never stopped rocking / I was an idiot for years / you CAN go back again / the mid 90s will never die / I will see Pearl Jam ANYTIME they come back to NY / Sting is still boring, but less so when Pearl Jam is his backing band

SetlistCorduroy / Mind Your Manners / Once / Animal / Given to Fly / Surrender (Cheap Trick coverwith Rick Nielsen & Tom Petersson) [watch] / Elderly Woman Behind the Counter in a Small Town / Nothingman / Leatherman / Better Man / Garden / Even Flow / Sirens / Deep / Jeremy / Leash / Do the Evolution

Encore – You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away (Beatles cover) / All or None / Pendulum / Present Tense / Breath / State of Love and Trust / Porch

Encore 2 – Last Kiss (Wayne Cochran cover) / Driven to Tears (Police cover with Sting) [watch] / Lightning Bolt / Sonic Reducer (Dead Boys cover) / Alive / Baba O’Riley (Who cover) / Yellow Ledbetter / The Star-Spangled Banner (John Stafford Smith cover)

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Straight Out of Miller High Life

31st Annual Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony
Barclays Center
April 8th

Say what you will about the actual Hall of Fame for Rock and Roll, and how they go about figuring out who gets in and who doesn’t, but the show they put on to induct whoever gets in is simply amazing – cause these moments only happen once – and sometimes people come together that haven’t been in awhile, and then never will again  

I know how special these induction shows can be and how knees bees they is cause 2 years ago I had my shiz flipped watching Cat Stevens playing in America for the first time in ages AND Nirvana be Nirvana without Kurt, but with some awesome ladies doing their best to be Kurt + a bunch of other awesome shiz (outside of the E Street Band being inducted and giving 31281238238 hours of speeches – F them!) at the 29th induction ceremony

This year’s inductees weren’t AS monumental, both to me personally and for music in general, but the show went on, and the show was AWESOME!!

it opened with David Byrne and Kimbra and The Roots paying tribute to David Bowie with ‘Fame’!!!

Deep Purple

deep purple

I had no idea who was in Deep Purple or whether they were still alive or not.  Well, they are alive!! And David Corverdale was in Deep Purple at some point (and now actually looks like a white snake)!  And Lars Ulrich loves them!!!!  And they were great! Although they didn’t play ‘Child In Time‘, which is one of my mos flavorite longest songs of balls thyme, but I guess there wasn’t time for 10+ minutes songs, but the ones they played were juss perfect

Highway Star / Hush / Smoke on the Water

Steve Miller

steve miller

I think we take Steve Miller for granted and granite.  Maybe cause his name is so basic and so American, or that his music has become so commonplace and so 70s American.  But you know what – we took a listen to Steve Miller’s greatest hits last week and we realized how foolish we’d been for not listening to him in ages.  His music is CLASSIC rock that truly rocks, and Steve’s still got it at age 72.  Hearing 3 of his songs was not nearly enuff to quench my need for Miller time.  I’ll have to go see a full on Steve Miller show.  HAVE to!

Fly Like An Eagle / Rock’n Me / The Joker

N.W.A.

nwa swelfie

Coming off the HUGE success of the hugely awesome Straight Out of Compton movie, N.W.A.’s influence and importance has never been higher – so what a PERFECT time for them to be inducted into the RnR hall of fame (becoming the 5th hip-hop group to do so), right???  And the group members speeches?  Thighly memorable – but they didn’t peform – which is almost a complete waste of inducting them.  Apparently N.W.A. wanted to perform but the Hall wasn’t helpful in helping them do what they wanted to do, so they didn’t do anything, which is BS.  But hey, if all we have are those speeches, then speech on!

then a little break for a Sheryl Crow and Grace Potter duet of The Eagles’ ‘New Kid in Town’, a tribute to the late Glenn Frey (who was at on this very stage 2 years ago)

Chicago

chicago band

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductions that bring about unexpected reunions are the single greatest reason for the Hall to exist.  I mean, it brought The Talking Heads together, and the 3 other heads HATE David Byrne more than I hate microwaved Nazi tunafish at Duke University.  Well, if Peter Cetera and his former bandmates of Chicago were to EVER reunite – this would have been the time – but alas, they didn’t, and so, we heard Chicago as they are today – Chicago minus Peter Cetera.  They do have a faux Cetera, but it’s juss not the same.  Anywho, Chicago remain cheesy, but they’re fun, and groovy, and cheesy groovy fun

Saturday in the Park / Does Anybody Really Know What Time It Is? / 25 or 6 to 4

25 fcuking or 6 or fcuking to 4!!!!!!!!!

no Cetera, but nothing stops 25 or 6 to 4 #RockHall2016

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Cheap Trick

cheap trick

2 weeks ago, I was like – I don’t know who Cheap Trick really are or why are they being inducted (esp over Three Dog Night or Duran Duran or whoever you think).  Then I youtubed some of their hits and was like, oh yeah, I know those songs, but they’re so MEHHHHHHHHHHHH, and I was like, so why are these guys getting inducted??  And then when I was at the show, I was like, they must induct these guys first and get them out of the way.  But no – they were the last dudes to go.  Probably cause their music is high engery, but whateves.  They were inducted, and they sounded good (and it was cool that their former drummer played with them for maybe the last time ever), and now I can move on with my life and Cheap Trick can with theirs

I Want You to Want Me / Dream Police / Surrender

and it all ended with a jam that was not one for the books, but hey, when else are Steve Miller Deep Purple Chicago Cheap Trick Paul Schaffer Sheryl Crow Kid Rock Rob Thomas and Little Stevie all going to play music together at the same exact time????  Nowhere else but for the Hall!!!!!!

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