Entries tagged with: Modest Mouse
photos by Mimi Hong, words by Andrew Sacher
Modest Mouse / Brand New @ Forest Hills Tennis Stadium - 8/9/14
Modest Mouse and Brand New played a few co-headlining shows this year, including Boston Calling back in May, and one in NYC this past Saturday (8/9) at Queens' Forest Hills Tennis Stadium which reopened in 2013 after not hosting concerts for years.
Brand New went on first, with an early set starting at 6:30 PM (the venue has a strict 10 PM curfew) which unfortunately meant that their whole set -- an otherwise killer light show included -- was played in the light. But besides that, no complaints. Like at Boston Calling, Brand New eschewed the poppier material of their early years in favor of a heavy set of noisy post-hardcore. Other than "Seventy Times 7," they focused on highlights from the darker Deja Entendu, The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me and Daisy, plus Devil and God-era outtake "Brothers." Of all the (relatively) modern bands I've seen, few can get a stadium of fans singing to every word of a non-single as loudly as Brand New did for "Okay I Believe You, But My Tommy Gun Don't," and the way they've been ending their sets lately with the abrasive one-two punch of "Degausser" and "You Won't Know" is one hell of a sensory overload. Brand New's live sets were getting mixed reviews a few years back, but they're at an all time high right now. There's been talk that new music is finally coming, and with the way these shows have been it couldn't feel like a better time for that.
After Brand New's searing post-hardcore under the sun, it finally got dark and Modest Mouse took the stage for a very different kind of set that somehow was the perfect complement to BN's. Considering how much the music world has changed in the seven years since Modest Mouse last put out an album, you may not consider them as "relevant" as they once were. But their set on Saturday was a hit-after-hit reminder of how great Modest Mouse's entire discography still is, and how weird. We of course got the danceable indie rock of "Float On" and "Dashboard," but also the chilled-out wooziness of "Ocean Breathes Salty," the raucous screams of "Doin' the Cockroach," the genuinely strange bass-heavy "Tiny Cities Made of Ashes" and so much more. They gave us 17 songs in an hour and a half without a dull moment, and when that 10 PM curfew hit, it still felt like most of the crowd would have wanted another 17 more.
The next Forest Hills Tennis Stadium shows are Drake/Lil Wayne (8/19) and The Replacements/The Hold Steady/Deer Tick (9/19). Pictures of Saturday's show are in this post. More, with videos and the setlists for both bands, below...
photos by Ellie Pritts
Outkast / Nick Cave / Modest Mouse
Headliner OutKast took the stage with a more pertinent query: "Are you ready for the greatest rap group of all time?" It was classic rap hype, and yet as the ensuing 90 minutes proved, the recently reunited duo of Big Boi and Andre 3000 has earned the right to include itself in the ranks of the hip hop elite. Not only did these guys show no rust, they reminded us what made them great since their first album, Southernplayalisticadillacmusik, was released 20 years ago: a dynamic and utterly complementary MC team blessed with rare musicality, lyrical ingenuity and stylistic audacity. From frenetic opener Bombs Over Baghdad to the understatedly anthemic Wheelz of Steel, civil rights party jam Rosa Parks and the song that made them a household name, Ms. Jackson, they were at once authoritatively engaging and sonically adventurous. Sure, there were hits, lots - including irresistible genre-bender Hey Ya! (delivered by André 3000 with a line of female fans dancing on stage - cheesy, but effective), sly boast So Fresh, So Clean, and the beautifully sleepy Elevators - but it's all relative. At its best, OutKast mixed cool and creativity like nobody's business. [Montreal Gazette]Taking place over the same weekend as Lollapalooza, and boasting a similarly huge lineup, Montreal's annual music festival Osheaga went down over this past weekend (August 1-3). The stacked festival included sets from Outkast, Jack White, The Replacements (with Green Day's Billie Joe Armstrong), Arctic Monkeys, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Modest Mouse, Danny Brown, Mac Demarco, Against Me!, The Dismemberment Plan, Haim and many more. Pictures of some of those artists, and a bunch of others, are in this post.
They continue below...
Pabst Blue Ribbon, or PBR if you prefer, is throwing their first-ever music festival this year in various Portland, OR venues from September 26-28. The fest, dubbed Project Pabst, will feature Modest Mouse, Tears for Fears, Guided by Voices, Rocket from the Crypt, Violent Femmes, Constantines, GZA (performing Liquid Swords), High on Fire, Red Fang, Shabazz Palaces, Phosphorescent, Menomena, The Thermals, Speedy Ortiz and more, Tickets, including single-day passes, weekend passes, and individual show tickets, are on sale now. More info at the fest's site.
Full lineup below...
Kevin Drew w/ BSS at Williamsburg Waterfront in 2011 (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Broken Social Scene's Kevin Drew released his new solo album, Darlings, earlier this year, and has already come to the US to open Feist's solo tour and play a full band release show (with multiple Arts & Crafts musicians) at NYC's Bowery Ballroom, which happened after being postponed a few weeks in April. Now, he's announced a much longer North American tour which brings him back to NYC on September 26 at Music Hall of Williamsburg. No word yet on what his live lineup will be like this time. Tickets for the MHOW show go on sale Friday (7/25) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (7/23) at noon.
No openers announced for the MHOW show yet, but many dates are with J Mascis (who plays his own NYC show and also with Witch this week, 7/23). A few others are with Belle & Sebastian and one is with Thurston Moore. This month into August, Kevin's on a Canadian run with Modest Mouse (who have a few NYC-area dates after). All dates are listed, with a video from the new LP, below...
Murder City Devils (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Fun Fun Fun Fest says:
FUN FUN FUN FEST is announcing today two changes to the music lineup for the festival Nov 7-9, 2014 in Austin. Modest Mouse will now be performing on Saturday, Nov 8 on the Orange Stage. The band will fill the slot previously held by Death Cab For Cutie, who had to cancel their performance due to an unforeseen and unavoidable scheduling conflict. The band is very sad to miss out on FFF, and they look forward to returning to Austin in 2015.That was quick! It was less than a week ago (and at the start of a holiday weekend) that Fun Fun Fun Fest published their response to Death Grips.
Also, following the napkin-announced breakup of Death Grips, FFF Fest is announcing that the Murder City Devils will perform in their place on Sunday, Nov 9 on the Black Stage. Murder City Devils will be playing in support of their new album to be released Aug 5, "The White Ghost Has Blood on Its Hands Again," which is their first full length studio release since 2000's "In Name and Blood."
To view the full festival music lineup broken down by day and stage - or to purchase weekend passes, Ultimate Smooth Passes (USP) and single day tickets - go to funfunfunfest.com.
FFF Fest has also recently released their 2014 Yellow Stage lineup, including comedy (Fred Armisen, Thomas Middleditch & Kumail Nanjiani from HBO's Silicon Valley, W. Kamau Bell) and spoken word (John Waters, Jello Biafra) and more. Stay tuned for upcoming announcements on the skate & ride action sports lineup as well as this year's Aqua Olympics program.
Modest Mouse also have shows coming up in CT, NJ, NY and other places.
Death Grips were also supposed to play FYF Fest which Murder City Devils is already playing. MCD also have a handful of other west coast dates in support of a new album called The White Ghost Has Blood on Its Hands Again (out August 5), as you can see in their tour flyer with the cover art, below...
Modest Mouse at Firefly 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Modest Mouse's tour dates this year already included upstate NY festival The Hudson Project and a big Queens show with Brand New, and they've now expanded their tour to include a (relatively) smaller NJ show just before the Queens gig. The newly-added show happens on August 7 at Starland Ballroom with support from Mimicking Birds, whose new album Eons came out earlier this year. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (6/27) at noon.
UPDATE: They also play Port Chester's Capitol Theatre on August 5 with Mimicking Birds, and a bit further from NYC on August 6 at The Dome at Toyota Presents Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford, CT (no opener announced yet). Tickets for the Cap show go on sale Friday (6/27) at noon and tickets for the CT show go on sale Friday (6/27) at 10 AM.
Mimicking Birds also headline their own NYC show right beforehand on August 3 at Mercury Lounge. Tickets for that show go on sale Friday (6/27) at noon with an AmEx presale starting Wednesday (6/25) at noon.
All currently known Modest Mouse dates (more TBA?) are listed, with a recent live video, below...
by Andrew Sacher
The May 2014 edition of Boston Calling went down this past weekend. I went on the Sunday (5/25) which, among other things, was a day full of nostalgia and mutual admiration. Brand New thanked Built to Spill and Modest Mouse on stage, saying they wouldn't be a band without those two groups, and only about an hour later, Modest Mouse also told the crowd they wouldn't have existed without Built to Spill. All three of those bands haven't put out new music in roughly five years, and while a festival full of the hottest flavor-of-the-month acts can be exciting, sometimes you just want a stacked lineup of bands playing the songs you know and love.
Earlier in the day Kurt Vile & the Violators did their thing, opening with "Wakin' On A Pretty Day" on what was undoubtedly a pretty day, and following that 10-ish minute song with more of their lengthier jams, setting what may be the perfect mood for an afternoon in the sun. If there's any artist right now that you need to see outdoors, it's Kurt Vile. After Kurt was Built to Spill who were less fit for a huge festival stage than the two artists that paid them tribute later in the day, but still an excellent sounding band. They were more reserved on stage, far from rock stars, but when Doug Martsch ripped guitar solos they were met with cheers from the crowd almost every time, which still only few indie rock bands (like Dinosaur Jr) can pull off.
Brand New (via @mwells05)
Then came another fun-in-the-sun set from Phosphorescent, the new megapop version of Tegan & Sara which was actually very solid even if you miss them being a rock band, an over-the-top set from indie pop phonies Bastille, and finally Brand New.
The band may hail from the early 2000s Long Island emo scene, but they got up there sounding closer to Sonic Youth than Taking Back Sunday. Their set was made up entirely of material from their third and best album, 2006's The Devil and God Are Raging Inside Me, it's practically equal predecessor Deja Entendu, and its likeminded followup Daisy. (Yes, that means no "Logan to Government Center.") And sure, it would've been nice to hear "Jude Law" or "Seventy Times Seven," but it felt like an artistic decision to omit those songs, not a diss at their fans. They're now a heavy, noisy rock band who were legitimately intense on stage. Even the Deja songs like "Sic Transit Gloria" and "Okay I Believe You, But My Tommy Gun Don't" were fleshed out with the feedback that fills their later albums. And if you're wondering just how hard Brand New goes these days, during set-closer "You Won't Know," Vinnie Accardi threw his guitar 30 feet in the air (twice), crashed a cymbal with it, and used a stage lamp as a slide.
Then Modest Mouse took the stage for what would be the second of three times this year the two bands play back to back. (They co-headlined a Cooperstown show a day earlier and will co-headline a Queens show in August.) That may sound like a weird double bill, but it worked so well. After being pushed around and squeezed in like sardines for Brand New's aggressive set, the crowd was looser for Modest Mouse, and broke out into a sea of Deadhead dancers at least once (during "Bukowski). Relatively speaking they were more laid back for most of the set, but not in a lazy way. Most of these songs may be over ten years old (the set was most Good News For People Who Love Bad News plus a few from each other album), but Modest Mouse really delivered like they meant it. I last saw Modest Mouse at Orion Fest in 2012, and their Boston Calling set easily blew that one away. A picture of Modest Mouse's setlist (which they didn't 100% stick to) and few more pics from the fest, below.
The bi-annual Boston Calling happens again in September with The National, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Replacements, Nas x The Roots, Spoon, The Hold Steady and more. Tickets for that one are on sale now.
A few more pics and a couple videos from the May Boston Calling below...
As you may know, Modest Mouse and Brand New are teaming up for a big show at Forest Hills Tennis Stadium on August 9 in Queens. Tickets for that show went on presale yesterday and went pretty quickly, but if you weren't able to snag any, you'll have another chance in the general on-sale which begins today (5/1) at noon.
Modest Mouse at Firefly 2012 (more by Dana (distortion) Yavin)
Modest Mouse and Brand New are already playing back to back at Boston Calling in May after a Cooperstown show together, and they've now added one in NYC too. They'll share a bill at the newly re-opened Forest Hills Tennis Stadium on August 9 in Queens which is back for a second season. Tickets for that show go on sale Thursday (5/1) at noon with a Ducat King presale (no password needed) and a Citi cardmember presale starting Wednesday (4/30) at noon.
The only other date announced for Forest Hills this summer so far is Zac Brown Band on 6/21.
Modest Mouse also play NY sooner at Saugerties festival Hudson Project in July with Kendrick Lamar, The Flaming Lips and more.
All of Modest Mouse's and Brand New's dates are listed, with a few videos, below...
Since we last posted the lineup, The Shaky Knees fest in Atlanta has grown to add The Replacements and more. Tickets also went on sale and are still available. Check out the lineup, headlined by The National, Modest Mouse and Alabama Shakes, in the poster above and the full schedule at the fest's site.
Shaky Knees Music Festival takes place in Atlanta's Atlantic Station, May 9-11, 2014.
Deer Tick and The Hold Steady are both also on the lineup and out on tour together now.
Upstate, NY has a new music festival debuting this year, the inaugural Hudson Project which goes down from July 11-13 at Winston Farm in Saugerties, NY with four stages set against the Catskill Mountains. The initial lineup includes Kendrick Lamar, Modest Mouse, The Flaming Lips, Moby (DJ), Atmosphere, Flying Lotus, Bonobo (live), Holy Ghost, Twin Shadow, Cults, AraabMuzik, Gold Panda, Flatbush Zombies, !!!, Isaiah Rashad, Yacht, Jon Hopkins, Kelela, Majical Cloudz, SZA, The Range and more. Tickets go on sale Friday (4/4) at 11 AM.
In addition to the music, there will be "an art village showcasing interactive art exhibitions, regional arts and crafts and a selection of Hudson Valley-area gourmet food, wine, craft beer and specialty cocktail options will also offer local selections."
Full initial lineup below...
Montreal's Osheaga Festival is returning this year from August 1 - 3 at Parc Jean-Drapeau. The lineup was just announced and includes Outkast, Jack White, Arctic Monkeys, The Replacements, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Modest Mouse, Local Natives, Haim, SBTRKT (who's streaming a new EP), Pusha T, Gogol Bordello, Cut Copy, Flume, Chance the Rapper, Gesaffelstein, Danny Brown, Four Tet, Volcano Choir, Against Me!, Joey Bada$$, Jon Hopkins, Kevin Drew, Duke Dumont, Shlohmo, The Dismemberment Plan, Courtney Barnett, Hospitality, The Men and more. Tickets are on sale now.
Check out the complete lineup below...
After spring and fall installments of the Boston Calling Music Festival in 2013, it's been announced that the fest will return again this spring, expanding from 2 to 3 days. It happens from May 23-25 at City Hall Plaza, and though the lineup hasn't been officially announced, the people behind the fest hid 10 vinyls with the lineup printed on it for a Twitter contest. Consequence of Sound points to one of those pictures (above), revealing that artists playing include Death Cab for Cutie, Modest Mouse, Brand New, The Head and the Heart, Tegan & Sara, Jenny Lewis, Frank Turner, Phosphorescent, Built to Spill, Kurt Vile, Warpaint, Cass McCombs and others, not to mention festival favorite JACK JOHNSON. Tickets will be on sale Friday (1/31) at 10 AM via the festival's website.
Governors Ball and Hangout Fest lineups were just announced today (and Firefly yesterday and Coachella not long before that), and now comes the lineup announcement for another big fest, Atlanta's Shaky Knees Festival. The fest goes down from May 9-11 at Atlantic Station with The National, Modest Mouse, Spoon, Local Natives, The Gaslight Anthem, Violent Femmes, Conor Oberst, Iron and Wine, Jenny Lewis, Dawes, Foals, Deer Tick, The Hold Steady, Tokyo Police Club, Graveyard, Mutual Benefit and many more. There's also one headliner still TBA. Outkast?
Tickets go on sale Friday (1/17). Full lineup and flyer below...
Quilt at Mexican Summer Five (more by PSquared)
Boston's Quilt make folky psychedelia recalling the Summer of Love sounds of the Haight-Ashbury scene. They released their self-titled debut LP on Mexican Summer back in 2011, and its followup, Held In Splendor (which we've already heard a few songs from), comes out January 28 via the same label. The band's been known for some cool, jammy live shows too, and you'll be able to see those shows on their previously announced 2014 tour which hits NYC on February 28 at Rough Trade (tickets).
Meanwhile, Quilt singer/guitarist Shane Butler has given us a list of his top 10 things of 2013. None of them are albums, but one is in reference to some cartoons he and other bands drew at Woodsist Fest in Big Sur, one of which is pictured below. Check out the whole list below...
We've already posted a bunch of videos this week like Failures' Union, Temples, Calculator, STRFKR, Night Beats, Batillus, Touche Amore, J. Cole, and more. But unfortunately we don't get to all the cool videos that come out during the week (or weeks), so here's our attempt at playing catch-up. Check out videos from Wang Chung covering Modest Mouse, Pity Sex, Spiritualized, Glasser, and more, below.
photos by Wei Shi
Passion Pit / Alt-J / Purity Ring & Danny Brown / crowd
Coachella 2013 is currently going down in Indio, CA for its second weekend after kicking off this past Friday (4/19). We've already posted pics of day 1 (HERE and HERE), day 2 (HERE) and day 3 (HERE) from weekend 1, and now we've got pictures of day 1 from weekend 2 in this post. This time around we caught sets by Passion Pit, Earl Sweatshirt, Polica, Youth Lagoon, Purity Ring, (who were joined by Danny Brown, whose new album they appear on), Foals, Modest Mouse, Alt-J and more.
Check out more pictures from 4/19, along with a "Coachellavated" video of the festival filmed from the top of director Chris Crutchfield's head and a video of Passion Pit's full set from weekend 1, below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin
Modest Mouse / Lupe Fiasco
The Firefly Music Festival continued in Dover, DE on Saturday (7/21) with sets from Modest Mouse, Polica, Cults, Charles Bradley, Lupe Fiasco, Cake, The Killers, and more. Passion Pit were scheduled to play that day, but unfortunately the Delware festival was one of the dates that the band had to cancel. They were replaced by Yeasayer at the last minute, who played at the same time as Lupe Fiasco (and we unfortunately missed).
The festival has already announced they'll be back next year. Pre-sale for 2013 general admission tickets go on sale Wednesday (7/25) at noon.
DOWNLOAD: The Felice Brothers - "Lincoln Continental" (MP3)
The Felice Brothers at Culture Shock 2012 (more by Kellyann Petry)
The Felice Brothers just released a new collection of songs titled God Bless You, Amigo, which comprises 8 traditional songs and 12 originals that the band have written over the years but never released. You can purchase the album at the band's website at $5 minimum, or any amount through $100 at $5 intervals. The proceeds will go towards a new tour vehicle and studio time for the band to record their next full length album. You can download the track, "Lincoln Continental," form God Bless You, Amigo, which premiered on Rolling Stone this week, above.
The Felice Brothers have some upcoming dates including opening for Modest Mouse at their sold out Wellmont Theatre show on Friday (7/20), before both bands play Firefly Music Festival in Dover, DE. Ian Felice of The Felice Brothers will be back in NYC later this year to open for Conor Oberst at his Carnegie Hall show on November 21. Tickets for that show are still available.
A list of all dates is below...
Modest Mouse at Governors Ball last month (more by Amanda Hatfield)
Modest Mouse, who recently graced the NYC area with appearances at Orion Fest and Governors Ball, will play The Wellmont Theatre on July 20. Tickets ($40) for that show go on sale today (7/9) at 5 PM. That show is one day before the band heads to Dover, DE for Firefly Music Festival, which they play on July 21.
A video of Modest Mouse playing "Shit Luck" at Governors Ball, along with a list of all currently known dates is below.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
Modest Mouse at Governors Ball - 6/24/12
After playing Orion Fest in Atlantic City on Saturday (6/23), Modest Mouse made their way to Randall's Island on Sunday (6/24) for another NYC-area festival, Governors Ball. As mentioned, Modest Mouse's set at Orion was plagued by a weak sound system and an uninterested crowd, but at Governor's Ball where they fit in better (playing alongside Fiona Apple, Beck, Devendra Banhart and more), both the band and the crowd were way more enthusiastic. The setlist had some of the same songs as their Orion set, like "Shit Luck, "Dramamine," and "Bury Me With It," but overall wasn't too similar and the Governors Ball show got noticeably more of The Moon & Antarctica than Orion did. More pictures and the setlist from Modest Mouse's Governors Ball set are below.
Now that those two festivals are over, Modest Mouse have been added to another NYC area fest, Firefly Music Festival, which goes down in Dover, Delaware from July 20-22 (which isn't much longer a drive from NYC than Atlantic City is). They'll join the previously discussed lineup of Jack White, The Flaming Lips, Passion Pit, The Black Keys, Polica and more. Tickets for that festival are still available. Modest Mouse's only other announced date at the moment is a Columbus, OH show tonight (6/26).
More pics from Governors Ball and setlist below...
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin ; words by Andrew Sacher
Metallica / Fucked Up at Orion Music Fest, June 23, 2012
Metallica's Orion Music & More festival went down in Atlantic CIty's Bader Field this weekend, featuring the band performing Ride the Lightning in full on Saturday (6/23) and The Black Album on Sunday (6/24), in addition to many other bands across four stages. Bader Field, which was previously used as an airport, was filled with rockers of all kinds -- from the satanist metalheads to the Gaslight Anthem-shirt bearing rock and rollers. In addition to the bands, you could check out Lars Ulrich's curated film screenings, James Hetfield's classic cars, Kirk Hammett's horror memorabilia, rock memorabilia with everything from old Velvet Underground postcards to Melvins posters, and much much more. And all of this went down just across the water from the towering, lit-up excess of Atlantic City's Trump Plaza, Caesars Palace, and the like.
I showed up to the festival on Saturday about halfway through Baroness' opening set on the main Orion Stage. Though the crowd was still pretty thin (they went on at 1 PM), the band delivered a strong set filled with a great mix of hooks and sludge, winning over most of the people who had showed up early enough to catch them.
Next stop for me was Lucero, also on the Orion Stage. "This song's called 'Women and Work,' it's about whiskey," said singer Ben Nichols of the title track off their most recent LP, making what was only one of many whiskey references during their set. They had a solid mix of the upbeat ones like that, and their sprawling slow-burners. The band sounded best on those slower cuts, as they drifted across the hot, sunny, mid-afternoon Bader Field, though I'm sure the foot-stompers would have taken charge in a smaller, tightly packed venue like their drunken NYE show at Brooklyn Bowl. The band did crank up the distortion on "Sounds of the City," and got great crowd reaction during "All Sewn Up," which he dedicated to the audience: "Plenty of fucking bad tattoos out there, so this one's for all y'all."
After Lucero's set ended, the Fuel stage saw what might have been the wildest set of the day with Fucked Up. Frontman Damian Abraham began by saying, "Last year we were thinking... who would be the craziest band we could play with, and we were like... METALLICA!" before kicking into "Queen of Hearts" off 2011's epic David Comes to Life. As per ushe, it only took about three seconds into that song for Damian to barge into the crowd (where he spent most of the show) and another few minutes before he took his shirt off. They relied most heavily on material off of David, playing other highlights like "The Other Shoe," "Turn the Season," and more. In the past I've said that Damian's in-the-crowd antics tend to be less successful in larger venues, but at Orion fest he did everything in his power to make his way through the entire crowd. He must have been part of every single mosh pit that broke out, and traveled everywhere from the kids pushing against the barrier to the people standing in the very back.
The Gaslight Anthem followed, taking to the Orion Stage, and came out with an introduction from Lars (as many other bands that day did). After his introduction, the Beastie Boys' "Sabotage" began playing through the PA as the band walked out, with frontman Brian Fallon decked out in an "RIP MCA" shirt (written in Run DMC typeset). I didn't notice it during Baroness or Lucero (and maybe Fucked Up's loud mayhem was to blame), but the sound at Orion Stage was significantly lower for all the non-Metallica bands that played, and it became easy to feel removed during The Gaslight Anthem's set. Despite the conditions, the band still sounded on point. They played "45," the single off their upcoming album, which is easily their best song since The '59 Sound, and older favorites as well, like "Old White Lincoln," "The Patient Ferris Wheel," and of course, "The '59 Sound."
Lars Ulrich introducing Hot Snakes
I then made my way over to the Frantic tent -- undoubtedly the best stage to watch bands -- for Hot Snakes, who were also introduced by Lars. Lars acknowledged the stage as well ("this is becoming my favorite stage of the day... this is where all the cool kids hang out!") and said tons of flattering things about Hot Snakes. The band thanked him a couple times for his compliments, before asking the crowd if any of us had heard of them, to which they were greeted with massive cheers that they seemed pretty surprised about. After all the intro-ing, the band began playing the buzzsaw guitar riff of "I Hate the Kids," the opening track off 2002's classic Suicide Invoice. They reunited last year after breaking in 2005, and they've definitely still got it. They played a good amount of Suicide Invoice, including "LAX," "Who Died," "Gar Forgets His Insulin," and the punishing title track.
After Hot Snakes' set, Modest Mouse took over the Orion Stage, and like with The Gaslight Anthem, the sound and setting of this stage did them absolutely no justice. We got some great songs -- "Bury Me With It," "Dramamine," "Tiny Cities Made of Ashes" -- but they were mostly drowned out by the talking of the uninterested crowd, many of who had begun gathering for Metallica. Not surprisingly, "Float On" was the one song that stopped the crowd from talking and got 'em singing along. Things probably went over better for Modest Mouse at the more indie-centric Governors Ball, which they played on Sunday.
Suicidal Tendencies meanwhile were playing to a giant crowd on the smaller metal-centric Damage Inc. stage, with help from their ex-bandmate, Metallica bassist Robert Trujillo who joined them for a bunch of songs.
Suicidal Tendencies/Arctic Monkeys
Hands down, my highlight of the pre-Metallica portion of the festival was Arctic Monkeys, who played the Fuel stage directly before the headliners took over Orion. It goes without saying that Lars took the time to introduce this band (their first record is his favorite of the '00s) and he said tons of appreciative things about the band, including that he's seen them every time they've played his city. They opened their set with the attack of "Brianstorm," which sent the band into a frenzy that didn't let up once during the set. Though the band's latter two records have been a bit less popular than their first two, they've really shown a maturation in sound on them and especially on a festival with a mass of heavier bands a lot of their newer material fit right in. Songs like "Pretty Visitors" and "Don't Sit Down 'Cause I've Moved Your Chair" border on sludge metal and stood out just as much, if not more than older classics like "Teddy Picker," "Fluorescent Adolescent," and "Dancefloor." In keeping spirits with the festival, during "Don't Sit Down," Alex Turner changed the line, "bite the lightning," to "Ride the Lightning," and pointed across the field at the Orion stage where Metallica's stage hands were gearing up for the band to play said album in full.
Alex takes complete control of the crowd and throws in a bit of playful arrogance, like pointing to Matt Helders and saying, "check this shit out," before one of Matt's more technical drum parts. The band pretty much kept their whole set in full throttle mode, eschewing many of their lighter songs, and they delivered with colossal power. Over ruthless drumming, stoner rock guitar solos, and overall ceaseless energy, Alex effortlessly topped it all off with his soaring vocals, almost of all of which were met by singalongs from the crowd.
Finally, after the rest of the festival had wrapped up, the strings of Ennio Morricone's "The Ecstasy of Gold" from Metallica's S&M album began playing through the PA, which meant the band -- who for many, were the sole reason of coming to the festival -- were about to take the stage. They opened with a bunch of live staples, like "Hit the Lights," "Master of Puppets," "Sad But True," and "The Four Horsemen," plus a newer one as well. Then the lights went black and on the stage's screens, popped up a video of clips from Metallica's Ride the Lightning period, which was greeted by huge cheers of the thousands of people that knew the band's performance of the album was on the way. When soundclips of Cliff Burton surfaced on the video, even more applause came, honoring the band's bassist who performed with them on their first three albums before passing away in a tour bus accident in 1986. After the video ended, an animated play on the Lightning album artwork took over the screens and the album's final track, "Call of Ktulu" began playing (they performed the album in reverse). Once "Ktulu" picked up, the lights came back on, revealing the band members on stage playing the song, and yielding more and more applause.
After the instrumental track, live favorite "Creeping Death" came in, sending the band pummeling into a spiraling vector of thrash. The band's theatrics, rock star approach, and tendency to play hits-heavy sets can give off the feeling that they've reached the point where their shows are simply crowd-pleasers, but it's really not the case. The band whole heartedly rock the fuck out on stage, and despite everything else going on, simply watching them play is pretty mind blowing.
According to Lightning's reverse tracklist, after "Creeping Death," came "Escape," which the band have never performed live, mainly because James absolutely hates the track. For anyone who didn't know, he made it abundantly clear at the show and even looked like he was having a bit of trouble getting into it while they played it live for their first time ever, but by the end, the crowd had welcomed its live debut more than excellently. Though James wouldn't hear of it -- "NO!" he yelled when the crowd tried convincing him that they loved it.
Then came "Trapped Under Ice," followed by "Fade to Black," which was by far the loudest singalong on the album during the acoustic guitar-led verses and, as occurs at Metallica concerts, the melody to Kirk's guitar solo in the intro. After the song's headbanging second half, James, with a smug smile, responded to the fanatic cheers with, "Yeah, I like that one too." The level of noise stayed above 10 for the following song, "For Whom the Bell Tolls," whose chorus saw tons of \m/-raised arms attached to bodies screaming along. Following the album's title track, Metallica wrapped up their performance of the album with much anticipated opening thrasher, "Fight Fire With Fire," for which the screens behind the band showed the masses of audience members singing along to the song's choppy vocals.
Directly after the performance of the album ended, the band stayed on stage and went immediately into more live staples -- "Nothing Else Matters" and "Enter Sandman." They then left the stage before returning for an encore which began in the dark with the acoustic intro of "Battery," and then hitting the lights for the song's slaying mile-a-minute riffing. The encore wrapped up with loud fireworks, black Metallica beach balls thrown int the crowd and two more live staples, "One" and "Seek & Destroy" and after the members of the band continued to thank the crowd for coming and making their festival a success.
More Orion Music Fest coverage to come. Lots more pictures, including Roky Erickson, Red Fang, Suicidal Tendencies, and more are below.
Can't make it to Atlantic City this weekend to catch bands like Lucero, Gaslight Anthem, Modest Mouse, and Metallica who will be playing both "Ride the Lightning" and "The Black Album" in their entirety. Fuse's livestreaming YouTube page has you covered. Preview video and both streams (which will start at their respective times) below..
As mentioned, Orion Music & More happens this weekend in Atlantic CIty's Bader Field from June 23-24 and is being headlined by Metallica both nights, who play Ride the Lightning in full on Saturday (6/23) and The Black Album in full on Sunday (6/24). Other bands playing include Arctic Monkeys, Modest Mouse, Hot Snakes, Fucked Up, The Gaslight Anthem, Titus Andronicus, Best Coast, Liturgy, A Place to Bury Strangers, and more, plus a heavy stage with Suicidal Tendencies, Sepultura, Torche, Red Fang, Kyng, Landmine Marathon, Black Tusk, Thy Will Be Done and others. The heavy stage (aka "Damage, Inc.") isn't the only place you can catch heavy bands though. The festival also includes Baroness on the Orion stage, The Sword on the Fuel stage, Liturgy on the Frantic stage, and Ghost on the Orion stage. You can check out the full schedule of both days and all four stages HERE.
Orion Music & More is the first NYC-area appearance for Hot Snakes since the reunited band played The Bell House and Maxwell's in December. They'll play another area show (also in NJ) at ATP I'll Be Your Mirror in September.
As mentioned, it's the first time in a while that Modest Mouse will be in the NYC area. They play Orion on Saturday (6/23) before heading to Randall's Island for Governors Ball, which also happens this weekend.
There's a ton of stuff going on at Orion other than live music too. You can pick up rock 'n' roll memorabilia at Ktulu's Rock 'N' Roll Emporium, check out film screenings hand-picked by Lars Ulrich at Hit The Lights Films, skate the Motorbreath Mini Ramp, have a glimpse into Kirk Hammett's creepy personal collection of horror film memorabilia at Kirk's Crypt, surf, nerd out at the ESP Guitar Experience, check out the Metallica Museum, show your support for a variety of charities, or check out the car show.
If you're heading out to Atlantic City for the fest this weekend, head here for directions. If you're driving, there's no on-site parking at the field, but there are a number of parking areas nearby and free shuttles that run from the lots to Bader Field. If you're taking the train, you can get there via the Amtrak or the NJ Transit Rail and there will be a free shuttle from the Atlantic City terminal to the festival. Once you're there, this map should help you get around. We're also told that it's about a 20-30 minute walk from the boardwalk.
Tickets for the festival are still available.
In related news," Kirk's Crypt" isn't the only place Mr. Hammett will be indulging in his love of all things creepy. He'll be publishing a book titled Too Much Horror Business - The Kirk Hammett Collection this October via Abrams Image with photographs of his personal collection of horror memorabilia. The book also includes Kirk's own handwritten captions for many of the photographs. He'll be putting out limited edition toys, like the ones he's been collecting his whole life, along with the book this October. You can pre-order the book at Kirk's online toy store. He'll be discussing the book at Kirk's Crypt at 4 PM each day.
Maybe his old friend Glenn Danzig will add it to his book collection...