Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Rolling Cobras, Detroit Stones

I saw the Rolling Stones last night.

I can tolerate a lot when it comes to seeing my favorite band, but this one really tested my patience. The shitty sound, gestapo-like security, chancy mid-October weather (luckily it was dry and not too cold), expensive tickets ($158.20 for a floor seat 80 yards from the stage), $7 beers (which may only be consumed in dreary, fenced-in beer gardens), and the stadium-sized, Vegas-esque, visual spectacle -- giant video screens, a crazy-ass light show, smoke machines, firey explosions, streamers, a 50-foot tall inflatable tongue-and-lips logo, and a fireworks display that looked like Kim Jong Il had unleashed WWIII -- all that competing with the actual music. Even then, during their 19-song set, they did five of the same tired songs that I hear 'em play every goddamn time -- "Start Me Up," "Brown Sugar," "Honky Tonk Women," "Tumbling Dice," "Jumping Jack Flash" and "Satisfaction." Not to mention douchebag Dave Matthews's guest vocals lousing up "Let It Bleed."

None of this came as much surprise, though I'm clearly experiencing diminishing returns with each Stones concert I attend. Last night they played only six new songs I hadn't heard live before, but I was delighted that three of 'em were the mid-'60s gems "Paint It Black," "Let's Spend the Night Together" and "Under My Thumb." I also hadn't previously heard either of Keith's two lead-vocal numbers (the so-so "You Got the Silver" and the bitchin' "Little T&A"). My favorite song of the night was "She Was Hot," an early-'80s favorite from my early teens, largely due to its sexy, silly video, itself a spoof of The Girl Can't Help It. Despite all my gripes, I found myself continually smiling throughout the show, so I suppose I enjoyed it.

I also saw the Detroit Cobras.

Unfortunately, by the time I walked from Qwest Field (née Seahawk Stadium) to Neumo's, the Cobras's set was nearly over. Apparently the show got an early start, ‘cause I only caught the last 20-some minutes before it ended at midnight. At least it cost me nothing to get in, the beer was only $3, and I got to hear two of my favorites ("Hey Sailor" and "Shout Bamalama"). The Stones promised A Bigger Bang, but dollar-for-dollar, the Cobras easily delivered the biggest bang.

The top photo was stolen from the P-I; I snapped the bottom two. I should leave the concert photography to the pros.

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