Like most of the civilized world, I will use the time at the end of the year to reflect on what the year has brought me. I will not be writing a “best of 2013” post, but I will be writing about concerts I saw, people I met, and albums I bought. If you really want a “best albums of 2013” list, my friend over at 6 Days from Tomorrow puts out a pretty definitive list every year. You should definitely check it out.
2013, for me, was a year of concerts, albums, and meeting a few cool people. I will start off with concerts. I went to mostly “grunge” (or as grunge as they can be nowadays), a few other shows, and a few shows with friends to see bands I had never heard of.
Here are the shows I saw:
Chelsea Light Moving (Thurston Moore’s band)
Father John Misty
Brothers of the Sonic Cloth (TAD)*
Cold War Kids
*I saw all three bands at the Sub Pop Silver Jubilee
I had a tremendous time at all of these shows. Let’s start at the beginning. Chelsea Light Moving was an early “must go”. I don’t quite remember how I heard about this show, but I saw that Thurston Moore was playing, so I knew I had to get there. I almost didn’t go. I’m glad I did. It was an awesome time. I had not heard of Father John Misty, but I had heard of, and was a fan of, the Fleet Foxes. A friend of mine told me about him, so I was pretty excited to see him. I was not disappointed. The next one was a big one – Tomahawk! Being a fan of the early 90s I liked Faith No More and The Jesus Lizard, so I was more than excited to see Tomoahawk which features Mike Patton and Duane Denison. I couldn’t have been more impressed. They almost made me want to start moshing – almost.
After the Tomahawk show, I was counting down the days util the Sub Pop 25th Anniversary Jubilee. If you want to read about my experience, you can do so here. I kept in high gear after the Sub Pop festival with The Melvins. That was an incredible show. They played for an hour and a half with no breaks and no encores. They sold no merchandise after the show and everyone left happy. Only King Buzzo and the gang could pull that off.
September 22-28 was a big week for me. I saw three concerts that week. All three were very different, but all awesome. The week started off with Mudhoney. They played in a cracker box of a venue and it was AWESOME! They rocked just as hard in 2013 as they did in 1988. Truly remarkable. The week ended with back-to-back concerts at a slightly bigger venue (but still pretty small). The first one was Blitzen Trapper, an alt-rock; alt-blues; alt-country; alt-etc band. They ended up playing for nearly two hours and then played a short encore. The next night, it was something completely different. For the first time ever, I went to see the opening band. The band was My Jerusalem, and they were opening for Electric Six. I couldn’t care less about Electric Six, but I had been waiting to see My Jerusalem for years, so I went. I convinced a friend to go with me and they played about 10 songs, killed it, then walked off. We left before Electric Six started.
On Columbus Day there was a concert I was really looking forward to. My favorite living artist is Mark Lanegan, and he was touring for his “Imitations” album. I bought tickets they day they went on sale. The show was at a really cool venue (a Jewish Synagogue) it was better than I could have hoped for. The setlist really did a good job spanning his near 30 year career. The last two concerts (Cold War Kids and Melt Banana) are concerts I went to because friends incvited me to go. I was familiar with Cold War Kids, so I knew a few of their songs and I had a great time. I hd never heard of Melt Banana so I had no idea what to expect. I left there in awe of what I had just seen. It was way more awesome than I could have hoped to imagine.
2013 was a great year overall, as well as for concerts. I hope that 2014 will be jut as good. Hopefully, it will feature some new acts that I have yet to discover. Good music is all around us if we know what to look for.