Tag: Soundgarden

Chris Cornell @ Beacon Theater New York City 10/19/2015

Chris Cornell w/ Special Guest Hemming – October 19th 2015

Beacon Theater – New York City

Words/Photos/Videos – Jay Porks

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       A question often floated in my direction is “Well you go to a lot of concerts, what’s the best show you’ve ever been to?” For a while now I’ve been saying the same thing: Chris Cornell Solo Acoustic Songbook tour that I saw at Town Hall a few years back. There, I saw one man with a guitar put on the best show I’ve seen in my short life. It was 1,500 people basically holding their breathe for two hours hanging on every lyric, every chord, every note . It was magic. There wasn’t a doubt in my mind that when another show with Chris Cornell doing the solo acoustic thing was announced  I would find myself in the building, but the bigger question was: Can you top the un-top-able?

Hemming .. Cornell Beacon

Hemming opened the night and treated us to a handful of sweet sultry tunes that would make Ryan Adams wanna cover her entire record. No seriously, he probably will. Then Spin Magazine will hype it up for six weeks before panning it. It’s their style. Anyway about Hemming’s style, well, let’s say she had the whole building feeling feelings before her set was over and I for one was glad I showed up early enough to catch it. She’s from Philly, has a sweet sense of self and some bad ass tunes to go along with it. And Girls + Guitars = Happy Face Emoji.  Can’t find a link to where you can buy Hemming’s record, but like her on Facebook here and stay posted. Highly recommended

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Just a tad after 9 the man of Higher Truth, Chris Cornell hit the stage to a resounding ovation. Some folks here from last night, others like myself lucky enough that a second New York City gig was added to help combat a chilly Monday evening in October. Chris, excited as ever, said that he was gonna mix things up tonight for the peeps who are hitting both shows. First song of the night was Misery Chain as the backing music played as he sang, not reaching for the guitar just yet. Before We Disappear was up next and the Higher Truth track was resonating much more with me while sitting in the Beacon Theater than listening to the song at my house. Can’t Change Me (from 1999’s Euphoria Morning) was another strong effort before Cleaning my Gun, which Cornell claims to have written for Johnny Cash but “Johnny never got around to it.” Nearly Forgot My Broken Heart was another instant classic from Higher Truth.

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See, last time I had the opportunity to see this tour they were using audio from the live shows to record an album. That lead to security being extra tight with the photo and video policy. This tour comes on the heels of the Higher Truth release. So tonight, in the balcony I’m 3 rows from the last one and there’s not a event staffer for miles. Safe to say I hit record on some of my favorites.

Like Fell On Black Days for instance, which was the first huge hit of the night. Besides the people continuously making the entire row get up so they can continue getting drunk, it was nothing short of incredible.

Cornell 3 with kid

Chris Cornell’s daughter joined her father on stage to do a version of Redemption Song.

The definition of heart warming-or as the kids might say “Totes Adorbs”-moment right there. Chris wondered aloud afterward about how he was going to top it. Say Hello to Heaven was a good start to topping that.

River of Deceit finished topping that. Mad Season!!!!

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Our first taste of Audioslave music came with Doesn’t Remind me. Back to 99 with Sweet Euphoria before the place exploded for Blow Up The Outside World. The Beacon Theater has got to have some of the greatest sound I’ve experienced. Chris Cornell’s voice reached every corner, every crevice of this joint. Sounded like I was first row. What a fantastic place to catch a concert.  At the same time, we’ve got probably the greatest voice of the last 20 years out here proving why he is that (again) here at the majestic Beacon Theater It was like I was watching a perfect game being pitched. I didn’t want to jinx it  by asking the question to myself: “Is he doing this again?!?”

One came next. Not Metallica’s One and not U2’s One, but actually a hybrid of the two. It’s a rendition he’s been playing since the songbook tour and its extremely cool.

Then we harked back to the wild time known as the 90s and the Singles soundtrack for a glorious Seasons, which was followed by a haunting The Day I Tried to Live.

Rusty Cage followed. My second aborted video due to concert goers just never ever having enough alcohol. Fans tonight in the balcony were disappointing. A lot of whom didn’t arrive til after Hemming (although event info listed an 8PM show time and also noted “please be early”) often shuffled around causing entire rows to have to stand to let them out. Felt like me and a handful of folks in the row behind me were locked in and other folks well, other folks were just not.

Like A Stone Chris dedicated to his mother in law who he says was in attendance this evening. Hunger Strike right around the corner and a the Beatles A Day In The Life closed out our pre-encore Cornell precedings.

 

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There was a dude on cello kicking ass on a lot of songs tonight.

 Cornell 6

Earlier in the evening, before one song was played Chris mentioned a fan that had been screaming “Like Suicide” all night last night and he promised to play it if he didn’t hear that same guy screaming it all night.

Well, specifically for that guy we got ourselves a Like Suicide tonight. The title track from the new record, Higher Truth was the show closer. 11:29 lights on.

100 concerts attended. Damn that’s a lot for a guy who doesn’t have six dollars in his bank account.

Chris Cornell at Benaroya Hall – Seattle, WA – 9/29/15

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Earlier this week, thenaturalstoner and I had what we would consider to be a perfect day in Seattle. We were in town to catch Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell at Benaroya Hall, a stop on his solo acoustic tour. After driving across the state of Washington that morning, we spent the afternoon in downtown Seattle doing all the typical tourist stuff like buying Hawks gear at the Seattle Seahawks Pro Shop, snapping photos in front of the Space Needle while making obscene gestures, taking in the sights of Puget Sound and studying the odd “art” along the waterfront. Like I said, typical tourist stuff.

At one point, we stopped off at a pub for a couple beers. No big deal, right? That’s what we thought until we spotted Grammy Award-winning rapper Macklemore sitting at a table behind us. Now, for some of you, this wouldn’t matter too much. But here at Concert Confessions, we have a little more respect for Mr. Thrift Shop ever since he released his latest single Downtown, which features vocals by Foxy Shazam frontman Eric Nally. Concert Confessions kind of digs Foxy Shazam, as evidence here, here and/or here.

After our afternoon downtown (and a fist bump between thenaturalstoner and Macklemore), we headed over to the show. It was such a nice evening out that we decided to walk instead of taking a cab. As we made our way to the venue, we stopped off in a small bar for a drink. Okay, if I’m being honest, it may have been a few drinks. Eventually, we made it to the show and we were ready for an unforgettable evening.

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Inside Benaroya Hall, Chris Cornell thrilled fans with a massive 30-song set list that lasted nearly three hours and included his work with Soundgarden, Audioslave, and Temple of the Dog (plus solo material). Cornell is arguably one of the greatest frontmen in the business today, and his iconic voice sounded great in the sold-out 2,500-seat concert hall, which is also home to the Seattle Symphony. To add to the thrill of it all, we were sitting front row. I have to give credit where credit is due, thenaturstoner was on his game when he bought these tickets months ago. I couldn’t believe that here I was now, an arm’s length away from the legendary Chris Cornell.

One of the highlights included a guest appearance by Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready, who accompanied Cornell on Hunger Strike (Temple of the Dog) and River of Deceit (Mad Season). Other members of Soundgarden and Pearl Jam were spotted throughout in the venue. McCready, however, was the only sit-in. Of course we would have loved for other guests, but McCready was a super treat for us all and those older covers sounded fantastic.

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Chris continued the night playing classics like Blow Up the Outside World, Fell On Black Days, Like A Stone and Black Hole Sun—although Benaroya Hall’s signature drink, the Black Whole Fun, left something to be desired. Cornell also dusted off some cool covers, including Bob Dylan’s Threw It All Away, Led Zeppelin’s Thank You, and a new favorite of mine, Prince’s Nothing Compares 2 U.

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All in all, this was an absolutely solid show and most definitely worth the time and money spent to make it to Seattle. I would highly recommend catching this tour if you have a chance. Cornell treats his fans to a massive set filled with great songs, which evoke the memories of the 90s.  Not to mention, his voice is still there and sounding better than ever. Thank you Seattle for an awesome evening.

 

Video credit: Tammy P.

 

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Soundgarden Announce May Tour Dates

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Soundgarden is already planning another leg of US tour dates, after a successful winter stint across the country. May 3rd the band will be in Atlantic City kicking things off, then will stay on the roas for the duration of the month playing towns like DC, Atlanta, Worchester, Pittsburgh, St. Louis and more before ending in Colorado. Check out the dates below:

Soundgarden May US Tour Dates:

05.03 Atlantic City, NJ // Borgata Event Center
05.04 Washington, DC // RFK Stadium/DC 101 Chili Cook Off
05.05 Concord, NC // Rock City Compound/Carolina Rebellion
05.07 Atlanta, GA // The Tabernacle
05.08 Atlanta, GA // The Tabernacle
05.10 Louisville, KY // Louisville Palace
05.11 Noblesville, IN // Klipsch Music Center/May Day 2013 Festival
05.12 Pittsburgh, PA // Stage AE
05.14 West Long Branch, NJ // The MAC at Monmouth University
05.15 Worcester, MA // Palladium
05.17 Wallingford, CT // Oakdale Theatre
05.18 Camden, NJ // Susquehanna Bank Center/MMR*B*Q Festival 2013
05.19 Columbus, OH // Columbus Crew Stadium/Rock On The Range
05.21 St. Louis, MO // The Pageant
05.22 Kansas City, MO // Midland Theatre
05.24 Houston, TX // Bayou Music Center
05.25 Austin, TX // Austin Music Hall
05.26 Dallas TX // The Palladium Ballroom
05.28 Broomfield, CO // 1stBANK Center

Carolina Rebellion Festival brings Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Deftones And More

Carolina Rebellion Fest

Another day, another festival announcement. For the third time, the Carolina Rebellion Festival will serve as Mid-Atlantic’s biggest rock festival around and May 4th & 5th it will return to  Rock City Campgrounds in Concord, North Carolina. The big names are Soundgarden, Alice In Chains and the Deftones. Papa Roach, Bush, Rise Against and Bullet For My Valentine are other notables. For more information on tickets and all that jazz, head over to the official festival website. For a full list of announce acts, check below.

Caroline Rebellion Festival 2013:

Soundgarden
Alice In Chains
Limp Bizkit
Rise Against
Bush
Deftones
3 Doors Down
Three Days Grace
Papa Roach
Bullet For My Valentine
Buckcherry
Volbeat
Halestorm
Asking Alexandria
All That Remains
Steel Panther
Device (with David Draiman)
Hollywood Undead
Sick Puppies
In This Moment
Escape The Fate
Pop Evil
Nonpoint
Otherwise
Aranda
Thousand Foot Krutch
Red Line Chemistry
Young Guns
Tracer
American Fangs
Heaven’s Basement
Monstro

An Evening w/ Soundgarden 01/23/13 Hammerstein Ballroom

Soundgarden – 01/23/2013

Hammerstein Ballroom – New York City

Words/Photos/Video – Jay Porks

Episode 82

Soundgarden 10

If this was my start to 2013, then boy is it going to be tons of musical fun. What goes on people, welcome yourselves to yet another Jay Porks Experience. Tonight it’s Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City to see Soundgarden, who are on the 2nd night of a back to back here at this dreadful venue located at 34th and 8th. It’s 15 degrees outside and I don’t have any money. No money means no cabs. No cabs mean spending 2 hours traveling and being frozen by the time I got to the venue. Luckily tonight, Cornell and Co. were here to help thaw out roughly 4,000 icy New Yorkers.

 

Let’s talk about the security outside of Hammerstein Ballroom for a second. At about 7:30 I was able to make my way inside without much of a line, the doors are at 7 and the show is at 8. The search at the door was insane. They’re making people take off their ski hats and everything. Searching every single person. My friend Pam is en route. They let me wait for her in the lobby so I’m watching this all go down. I get a call at 8:15 from Pam asking if the line I got on was around the block, because that’s where she is. I head outside to find a line has indeed, formed around the block. These guards are searching three people at a time. This place holds close to 4,000 people, and you guys can’t get a few more event staffers out there and get us in quicker? They’ve created a situation where half the crowd won’t be inside by the time this show starts. It’s 15 degrees out here. I’m not saying I know a better way, but there has got to be some sort of alternative to this. Can we do it like the TSA at the airport? I want to tell these people that I’m only going to be here for 2 hours or so, there’s no reason to bring every single illegal thing I own to this building. Not worth the struggle. This is one of the many reasons why I choose not to visit this venue if I don’t have to. What a scumshell this place is. This is not an issue I have at any other venue and they all do searches.

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So remember that “show is at 8” part? Well, we didn’t get to our seats til after 8:30. Another travesty, the seating in the mezzanine. The seats are in “first come, first serve” order. So no matter what number it says on your ticket, no matter if you got tickets 5 weeks ago or 5 minutes ago you have your pick of the litter from all the seats up top. So what did I pay $65 + fees for if my seat isn’t reserved, that’s my only question. And if you caused fans to get into the building a half hour late because of your rigorous search outside, then whats all that weed I smell everywhere?

We seated ourselves in the last two seats on the right side, in the last row. Literally the furthest place you can be in this place. But remember folks, last time I saw Soundgarden I was about a football field away from them at the Gorge in 2010. So being able to actually see the action on stage was a treat. Somewhere between 8:30 and 9 the lights dimmed and the band was set to hit the stage. Ladies and Gentleman, SOUNDGARDEN.

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When Soundgarden hit the stage and kicked things off with “Searching With My Good Eye Closed” they began a career spanning (I hate the term “career spanning”) set of old hits, old obscure tracks, and of course a nice dose of King Animal spun in there. We didn’t get into King Animal though, until “Non-State Actor” checked in as the 10th song of the evening. “Spoonman”was awesome in the two slot a the band ripped through “Gun”, “Rhinosaur” and “Flower” before I had to turn to Pam between songs and say “We’re seeing fucking Soundgarden!”. I was excited. I’m happy Twitter exists because I’m terrible with song names. Speaking of Twitter, last night I read tweets about an oversold Hammerstein Ballroom. I read that it was crowded on the floor. Tonight the floor looked packed out, and even though I was in the last row of the building, I did notice people standing behind me by the time we were into “Loud Love” and “Drawing Flies”.

It was during “Drawing Flies” I decided time to grab some quick drinks, and I stood on a line that had 4 people in front of me for the duration of that song as well as “Hunted Down”. I ordered a Coors Light and a Captain and Diet and received a Budweiser and some fruity looking beverage that was clearly not Captain and got charged 17 bucks (Pam got charged 17 bucks). I swear the only people who should be paid for working here tonight are the four on stage because everything else going on inside this venue is a train wreck.

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I didn’t even need to hear the lyrics as soon as I saw that backwards American flag on the video screen I knew we were into “Non-State Actor” by now,

so I figured they’d go back to back with new tracks and hit us with “Been Away Too Long” but not so fast-they slipped “My Wave” between them.

Worse Dreams” into “Blow Up The Outside World”-now we’re in a new one, old one portion of the set. It’s only the halfway point. Kim is adding a little extra funk in his riffs for this one, I hear his guitar trailing off in another direction from time to time in this one, and I like it. “Zero Chance” and “Eyelids Mouth” preceded “By Crooked Steps”-

another one of my favorites off the new record. Speaking of the record, Chris Cornell said at one point earlier (and I have this on video if it ever uploads): “the new record is called King Animal.. if you haven’t bought it by now, well I don’t care if you steal it or whatever” before jokily retracting the statement when he said “I think the president of our record company is here tonight”. “Outshined” was a little extra special tonight

heard everyone in my section screaming along to that one. That place was rocking all night long. Such an amazing live band these guys are. I’ve seen them do it outdoors now I’m seeing them do it indoors. The guy walking around my section who looked like Scott Ian from Anthrax was really getting into it with his girl during that one. I was waiting to have a good laugh when “Blood On The Valley Floor” came on.

The reason for that is because the other day while moving quickly to post a video of Soundgarden performing a song never heard live I mistakenly said that “Blood On The Valley Floor” was unreleased and wasn’t on King Animal. So here I am taping it and I can’t help but laugh at myself. Great track none the less. This King Animal record isn’t an album people should brush to the side while only being grateful that Soundgarden playing together again-this album is awesome. And I really thought I appreciated it when it came out. But seeing these songs brought to life live, Cornell‘s howling, the back drop of a powerful Matt Cameron on drums. Just cause he’s currently ¼ of the band I hate the most in my life he is also ¼ of Soundgarden and he’s tearing stuff up back there. One song another dude was drumming with him on the same kit. I also have that on video, again, barring it uploads anytime this month.

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Moment of truth time: Yes they did indeed play “Black Hole Sun“. It was a sweeter version of the song, the ever so slightly more mellow chorus much like I witnessed two years ago across the country. I hate when bands don’t play their biggest hit so I’m happy they played it. Although, had I known what would come or not come later, I would have traded it for Jesus Christ Pose and Pretty Noose(both of which absent tonight).

But like I always say: When you’ve got a bitchin’ camera doubling as binoculars, sitting in a seat rocking out to Soundgarden next to a cool chick who loves Seinfeld as much as you there’s really no way that can turn into a losing situation. “Rowing” was next up before they ducked off. People were exiting since Outshined so lots of people walking in front of my camera. I have no desire to go back out into that cold I’m sitting right here til they make me leave. Came out to a four song encore of “Head Down”, “Rusty Cage”, “The Day I Tried To Live

and “4th of July”-the middle two of the four being my highlights of that section. I was so into this show I wasn’t even keeping notes besides songs, I wasn’t writing down exact times and stuff.

After “4th of July” Chris left is guitar on the floor of the stage face down and feedback fed through the PA until it faded out into the house music. Somewhere between 11-11:30 they were done and we were on our way out.

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You know you’ve taken in something of epic proportions when there’s a handful of songs you wanted to hear that didn’t get played and you’re still walking down the block chatting it up about how amazing the show was. And that’s what Soundgarden brought to the table here tonight. 28 songs. Count it, 28. That’s like a Bruce Springsteen type number. And someone tell Billy Corgan that if what I just witnessed was nothing but a “cash grab” then Cornell and company can snatch my wallet anytime they please.

May have mixed up a few songs in the paragraphs above in terms of order, but the full set list is below the fancy pictures. Late..

Setlist:

Searching With My Good Eye Closed

Spoonman

Gun

Rhinosaur

Flower

Loud Love

Drawing Flies

Hunted Down

Live to Rise

Non-State Actor

My Wave

Been Away Too Long

Worse Dreams

Blow Up the Outside World

Zero Chance

Eyelid’s Mouth

Like Suicide

By Crooked Steps

Outshined

Blood on the Valley Floor

Fresh Tendrils

Mailman

Black Hole Sun

Rowing

—Encore—

Head Down

Rusty Cage

The Day I Tried to Live

4th of July

 

 

 

 

 

Rock On The Range 2013 Features Soundgarden, Alice In Chains & Smashing Pumpkins

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No matter what year it actually is right now, this Rock On The Range lineup for 2013 is indeed super awesome. Upon a Google search trying to see Soundgarden‘s set list from last night in New York City, we stumbled upon this line up of past, present and future heroes and wondered how exactly one would bring themselves to actually go to Ohio. Headliners include Soundgarden, Alice In Chains and Smashing Pumpkins. Some may say “What is it 1993 or something?”, but those people might not be aware that all three of those bands released new, critically acclaimed records in the past two years. Korn (can’t type the backwards R), Bush, Stone Sour, Three Days Grace, Papa Roach, Cheap Trick, Swedish Rockers Ghost, Middle Class Rut and Heavy Metal favorites Sevendust are among the notables.

It’s all going down May 17th through 19th at Crew Stadium in Columbus, OH. And tickets are on sale February 1st and you can head to the festival’s official website for more details on everything that is Rock On The Range. This one looks like a lot of fun. The full lineup as released so far is listed below.

Rock On The Range 2013 Line Up:

Soundgarden
Alice In Chains
Smashing Pumpkins
Korn
Bush
Stone Sour
Three Days Grace
Papa Roach
Cheap Trick
Bullet For My Valentine
Volbeat
Lamb Of God
Skillet
A Day To Remember
Buckcherry
Halestorm
Hollywood Undead
All That Remains
Device (with David Draiman)
Steel Panther
Sevendust
Sick Puppies
Asking Alexandria
Pop Evil
In Flames
Clutch
In This Moment
Black Veil Brides
The Sword
Ghost
Motionless In White
Red
Deuce
Middle Class Rut
Big Wreck
Oleander
Otherwise
Red Line Chemistry
Young Guns
Thousand Foot Krutch
Mindset Evolution
Tracer
Beware of Darkness
Heaven’s Basement
American Fangs
Love And Death
Gemini Syndrome

Soundgarden Debut New Song Live

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So Chris Cornell and the boys in Soundgarden are currently smashing up venues across the country, and will spend the next two night in New York City’s Hammerstein Ballroom. That’s not the news here. The news is that a new song was premiered in live at a show in  Pennsylvania over the weekend. You can watch the video of that below, it comes after “Blood On The Valley Floor” . For a full list of Soundgarden Tour Dates, click here.

Soundgarden 11/26/12: Jimmy Kimmel Live Concert Stage – Hollywood, CA

Soundgarden 11/26/12:

Jimmy Kimmel Live Concert Stage – Hollywood, CA

Words/Photos by Reverend Justito

I am pretty sure it was 8th grade when I discovered Soundgarden and early 9th grade when I picked up Badmotorfinger. Sure Superunknown was solid but nothing ever hit me as hard as the songs on the 1992 classic.

Sadly I never had a chance to see Soundgarden the first time around. I was either too young to see shows or unable to get to a far off destination like Oakland to see the band. Now with the band back together it has been a struggle to see them. From already having tickets to another show to simply not getting down to the Bayou in time I feared it would never happen. As great as it would be to see them at the Wiltern early next year I simply don’t have the funds at this point in my life. So I did what any music snob in Southern California would do to get a fix of Soundgarden live. I volunteered to stand around for 3 hours in exchange for 5 songs as part of a Jimmy Kimmel Live taping.

I knew we would get a heavy dose of the band’s outstanding new album King Animal. I assumed the first song out of the gate would be Been Away Too Long but I was wrong. The band actually kicked off the set (which featured the Goodyear Blimp flying overhead) with By Crooked Steps. This actually worked nicely as I think it rocks a bit harder. What most surprised me is how the band seamlessly flowed Rowing out of Been Away Too Long. Typically this bald MC comes out and shocks nobody by sharing that the band will perform a few more songs off air. Not on this night as the action kept flowing well after the cameras were shut down.

http://youtu.be/3hrVwHspnFc

http://youtu.be/whRNiEy59qc

With many hits that could fill up the brief set, I had my hopes on one song. That song was Rusty Cage. If I could just hear the band play that I could die a little happier. Much to my luck they decided to bust this out right as I hit record on my fancy new iPhone. Talk about perfect timing and life working out nicely.

The band closed out the mini set going back farther than Badmotorfinger. Deciding to rock the parking lot to the fullest, Soundgarden busted out Beyond The Wheel. Way cooler way to end than Black Hole Sun, while I would still go see the band perform a full headline set if I got the chance this was a great way to get a glimpse of a band I have loved for nearly two –thirds of my life. Glad they are back.

 

 

Soundgarden Unleash King Animal on The Ed Sullivan Theater Live on Letterman

Soundgarden Unleash King Animal on The Ed Sullivan Theater Live on Letterman

We’re going to change things up tonight and post some Soundgarden stuff, it’s not like they’ve been in the news this week or anything. They’ve only announced some small gigs along with appearances on a few of the Late Night shows (Letterman, Kimmel), then killed it across the pond on Jools Holland before announcing a bigger tour for 2013 and have kept this writer busy posting stories about all that stuff here at Concert Confessions. All kidding aside, one of the best parts about writing for Concert Confessions besides the awesome folks involved in the project or having the opportunity to play journalist on the internet is the freedom to post about bands you love. It’s great to not have to read emails about how the “sharing of music” doesn’t involve a band you like, but some buzz band that doesn’t own a guitar, Thom Yorke‘s latest DJ set, etc.

Back to Soundgarden, the band was on David Letterman tonight (11/12) and with performing on the Late Show we have ourselves a ‘Live on Letterman’ webcast which went down at 8PM on the East Coast. The performance: Stellar. Soundgarden isn’t a reunion, it’s a continuation of something that was on hold for a little while. The band killed it, hitting us with heavy doses of King Animal their new record due out Tuesday(11/13) along with some essential older hits like Beyond The Wheel and Fell On Black Days(every time I hear that song it takes me back to the Gorge).  The setlist, along with the full performance is below . They played “Been Away Too Long” on the CBS Televison broadcast. That video is also below, and that’s courtesy of The Audio Perv

Soundgarden Live On Letterman Set List:

Worse Dreams

By Crooked Steps

Incessant Mace

Beyond the Wheel

Taree

A Thousand Days Before

Eyelid’s Mouth

Non-State Actor

Fell on Black Days

Rowing

Soundgarden Live On Letterman

Been Away Too Long


Soundgarden Hitting The Road Big In America in 2013

Soundgarden Hitting The Road Big In America in 2013

We swear this is not a Sounsgarden fan-site, it’s just that a fan of the band happens to work here and these guys have dominated the news wire the past week or so. As promised the other day when they announced three intimate North American Gigs, Soundgarden has just unveiled a shit load dates for January and February of 2013 along with the release of their new music video  for “Been Away Too Long”. The tour is interesting because they’re not playing Arenas, more like just bigger venues, Hammerstein Ballroom being a prime example. And they play two night stints at most of these tour stops-I guess that’s the reply to one Concert Confessions journalist wondering aloud if tickets would sell out in under 2.5 seconds. So most likely, two chances to see Soundgarden if they hit your town. The dates lay below and underneath them you can watch the new music video for Been Away Too Long

Soundgarden North American Tour Dates 2012-2013

 Nov 13 – New York, NY -Irving Plaza

Nov 16 – Toronto, ON – Phoenix Concert Theatre

Nov 17 – Hollywood, CA – Fonda Theatre

Jan 18 – Washington, DC – DAR Constitution Hall

Jan 19 – Upper Darby, PA – Tower Theatre
Jan 20 – Boston, MA – Orpheum Theatre
Jan 22 – New York, NY – Hammerstein Ballroom
Jan 23 – New York, NY – Hammerstein Ballroom
Jan 25 – Toronto, ON – Sound Academy
Jan 26 – Toronto, ON – Sound Academy
Jan 27 – Detroit, MI – The Fillmore
Jan 29 – Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre
Jan 30 – Chicago, IL – Riviera Theatre
Feb 01 – Milwaukee, WI – Eagles Ballroom
Feb 02 – Minneapolis, MN – Orpheum Theatre
Feb 06 – Portland, OR – Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall
Feb 07 – Seattle, WA – Paramount Theatre
Feb 08 – Seattle, WA – Paramount Theatre
Feb 10 – Vancouver, BC – Queen Elizabeth Theatre
Feb 12 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater
Feb 13 – Oakland, CA – Fox Theater
Feb 15 – Los Angeles, CA – The Wiltern
Feb 16 – Los Angeles, CA – The Wiltern

Feb 17 – Los Angeles, CA – The Wiltern(Added by overwhelming demand)

Soundgarden Performs on Later… With Jools Holland

Soundgarden Performs on Later… With Jools Holland

In another installment of ‘England has better TV shows than us’,  we have Soundgarden performing on Later… With Jools Holland the other night. They have a new record out, King Animal, and it’s pretty intense. It’s so good that Sportscenter is using the lead single Been Away To Long to go into commercial breaks.  Soundgarden is going to play some  (three) shows in America (get that info by clicking here) that will sell out in 2.5 seconds. So here’s hoping the band goes out on a more extensive tour hitting Arenas across the country(Which they did by the way, dates are here)-you can watch the videos of ‘Been Away Too Long’ and ‘Rusty Cage’  from Jools Holland below as they have surfaced on YouTube.

Been Away Too Long

Rusty Cage

Soundgarden To Play Three “Small” US Gigs

Soundgarden To Play Three “Small” US Gigs

 I can’t name one person (besides possibly Billy Corgan) who’s not excited for this rebirth of Soundgarden we’ve had over the past few years, with a tour in 2011 and this year bringing a new record  King Animal, due out November 13th.  The band has just announced Late Night appearances on David Letterman(11/12)  and Jimmy Kimmel (11/26), along with three other intimate gigs that will undoubtedly sell out in a matter of moments. Those dates are listed below, and tickets are on sale to the general public November 9th via Ticketmaster

November 13 – New York, NY @ Irving Plaza
November 16 – Toronto, ON @ Phoenix Concert Theater
November 27 – Los Angeles, CA @The Fonda Theatre

The Top 10 Jay Porks Experiences of 2011

As 2011 reaches a close, we take a look back at the year in concerts. In volume, I probably attend the least amount of total shows per year if you pool all of the contributors here at Concert Confessions. But never the less, by years end I will have reached 23 concerts, eclipsing last years total of 20. My only personal goal is to always get out to more shows then the year before. We did that in 2011, and here’s hoping we crack a bigger mark in 2012. Back to the reminiscing, here’s the Top Ten Jay Porks Exerperience’s of 2011

10)GWAR Music Hall of Williamsburg(2/20/11)

It was a cold night in February. I remember it like it was yesterday-it was the day before I was to get my Blackberry, and I remember the whole night being pissed about how if I would’ve gotten a new phone earlier that day I’d leave here tonight with better quality photos. Speaking of photos, the Reverend Justito was able to go through channels and gain me a photo pass for the first 3 songs of their set. It was at this time that I would stand about an arms distance from the late Cory Smoot/Flatimis Maximus while getting soaked in GWAR fluids, which would later add some difficulty to hailing a cab after the show-being that it looked like I was covered in blood. Awesome times [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DXrJ0Kw6d_Y&w=480&h=360]

9)Slaughterhouse at SOB’s (5/25/11)

I know what your all thinking-How the hell does he throw Hip Hop into his Top Ten? Well, a week or so prior to Joe Budden replying to a Tweet of mine setting off a back and forth which gained me a collective middle finger from his fan base, he played with Slaughterhouse at SOB’s. This is the show that made me buy the tickets to see the man solo at Irving Plaza, and even though that was terrible, I can’t deny what Budden, Royce Da 5’9′, ‘Joell Ortiz’ and ‘Crooked I’ did to the stage at SOB’s that night. And that was setting it on fire. Also, one of the openers ‘Emilio Rojas’, I promise you will headline shows in 2012. He sounded like the future.

8)Chris Cornell @ Town Hall(4/13/11)

With a Soundgarden full on reunion tour not yet confirmed, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to see Mr. Chris Cornell on his Solo Acoustic Songbook Tour. The hair is back, and in full Jesus mode Cornell blessed us with hits from Soundgarden, Audioslave, his own solo catalog and mixed in a Beatles cover along with a, brace yourselves, acoustic cover of Ghostland Observatory’s “Sad Sad City”.

7)Dinosaur Jr w/ Henry Rollins, OFF and Fucked Up @ Terminal 5 (6/23/11)

Overlooking the balcony on the 3rd floor of Terminal 5 for an epic night of events. If it wasn’t enough that I was seeing Dinosaur Jr., we had Keith Morris in the building with his latest band. OFF!. In addition to that we had the critical acclaimed “Fucked Up”. And the frosting for the cake, Henry Freakin’ Rollins interviewed Dinosaur Jr on stage before their set, an interview I captured in it’s entirety and it up on YouTube. Also got most of their set, they had great lighting and my spot was of epic proportions. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5n0mEa2r_hM&w=480&h=360]

6)Local H Mercury Lounge (4/21/11)

Local H is one of those bands that will probably always find there way on my year end best list if they come around to my neck of the woods, and that’s just what happened. Not only that, but they were booked for an “Early show” at the Mercury Lounge-which means doors at 7PM and show was to end promptly at 9:30. No problem for Scott Lucas and Brian St. Clair, who kicked out about 20 jams in the time they had on stage, including 2 songs from a forthcoming Local H record: “Cold Matter” and “Another February”(which I have video of below this paragraph). Covered ‘Joey’ by Concrete Blonde and “Wolf Like Me” courtesy of TV on the Radio. During Wolf Like Me, Scott came off stage with his guitar and played, like, into the camera was recording with and eventually was jamming out leaning against me as people snapped photos of him in the crowd. What Mercury Lounge is great for in not having security so I can tape, they suck at lights-and there is no conclusive proof of this on video. At least my buddy who I met into at the Lemonheads show says he remembers me from the crowd and remembers seeing that happen. Got an autograph from Mr. Lucas after the show and gave it to my friend Pam, who was defeated by New York City traffic trying to make it there. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3sXiip0fN78&w=480&h=360]

5)Flaming Lips&Weezer Get Freaky On The Same Stage PNC (7/28/11)

So when I saw the show listed on Ticketmaster it was billed “Weezer/Flaming Lips” yet when my ticket arrived in the mail it said “Flaming Lips/Weezer”. I figured at the least I save myself time seeing some crap opener, as I like both these bands. As the show drew near, it was announced that the bands would both set their gear up on stage, and take turns playing songs back and forth. Now isn’t this interesting? And it turned out to be even way more fun then I imagined. With limited time, sort of, Weezer wasn’t able to squeeze into their set a bunch of songs I hate. Plus they kicked off the night both bands on stage playing Black Sabbath’s “Sweat Leaf” with Wayne Coyne and Rivers Cuomo floating the pit area in space bubbles. After 2 hours of back and forth hits from both bands, they shared the stage again to play “She Don’t Use Jelly” followed by “Undone(The Sweater Song)” before going off. Awesomeness. I was still giddy as I wrote the review on a plane flying off to Washington State-that’s a hint for things to come on this list. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0d2iws3WKGc&w=480&h=360]

We have a tie for 3rd/4th place:

3)Meat Puppets (11/4/11) & in Teaneck, NJ (11/6/11)

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2cw28zvA_Xk&w=480&h=360]

The Meat Puppets returned to New York City for the first time in 2 years to play Le Poisson Rouge. They would play 2 nights later in Teaneck, NJ at Mexicali Live with me in attendance as well. It’s a tie because on both nights they would equally scorch the stage they played frying hearts and minds-yet it was two totally different experiences for me despite the set list not varying much. Night one in NYC I got backstage, and was able to hang with the boys before the show and even got to meet Sean Yseult (bass player who started a little band called White Zombie with dude named Rob), who was nothing less then a bad ass chick-I mean that in the awesome sense. But after all that it ended up I couldn’t get a good spot up front and had to extend my arm up full length when recording songs(the good news being I don’t have to hide my camera from anyone, being the Social Media Assistant for the band I am actually permitted and encouraged to do so).

Two nights later I meet up with Pam in Teaneck, NJ-a little hidden spot of Northern New Jersey I never even knew existed. My intentions on this night are to finally show off my favorite band still touring to one of my good friends- [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4yeJftK_l5Q&w=480&h=360]
one of the few friends I have in real life who’s musical taste I respect. She’s never seen them, and this was to be my 9th time. Check this out, you know that band Black Box Revelation that’s been blowing up by the show? Yea, they opened up this one before they set off w/ Beady Eye on tour a week or so later. They were awesome. And my great spot for video during this Meat Puppets set as oppose to they Friday night set is not even comparable. I got everything I needed to get and more. About halfway during set Pam says to me “This drummer is amazing”. That drummer is Shandon Sahm (son of Doug Sahm, I’m gonna let you use Wikipedia for this one), and for the nights encore as it would have been Doug Sahm’s 70th Birthday day, we saw Curt Kirkwood relinquish his guitar to Shandon and took a seat at the drum kit. They then played “She’s About A Mover”, a Sir Douglas Quintet cover with Curt on drums and Shandon Sahm singing and playing guitar. Got Curt to autograph Pam’s ticket after the show. Freaking amazing weekend of the Meat Puppets, hence my tie for 3rd/4th place. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aTZw1SJbg4g&w=480&h=360]

2)Ween Hammerstein Ballroom: Halloween 2011

For a second year in a row through circumstances beyond their control, Ween fall one spot short of the top spot on my best shows of 2011 list. It was Halloween, it was WEEN at Hammerstein Ballroom in the city. We tore the seated section 103 apart, stacking chairs creating a standing room frenzy. They did another “Evening w/ Ween” which includes no opening acts-and played for the better part of three hours dressed up for Halloween in skimpy sailor outfits. It was amazing, and even through picking up the pieces of my face on the way out the door-the number one spot had already been locked in. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fn820V9WMhw&w=480&h=360]

1)Soundgarden, QOTSA, Mastodon,& the Meat Puppets @ The Gorge 7/30/11

Remember when I said I was writing the Flaming Lips/Weezer review on a plane heading to Washington State? Yea well, that was one insane weekend. With tour guides TheNaturalStoner and Mr. Sparkly taking care of me, we were off on Saturday July 30th of 2011 to the Gorge Amphitheater to see Soundgarden, Queens of the Stone Age, Mastodon, and THE MEAT PUPPETS. This was before any Meat Puppets dates were locked for NYC so I had to make sure I caught them right? Plus opening for Soundgarden?!? A band I’ve been waiting to see for years and years. And sandwich in Queens of the Stone Age, which I missed out on a presale from their NYC show in March and how can we think this could get any better? Well, it got better as soon as we were at the top of the grassy hill looking down at the stage camped so behind it is the beautiful Columbia River and mountainside. 18,000 people get in this place, standing room exclusive. If it wasn’t enough that I got to see the Meat Puppets for the 7th time that night, I also got to see Soundgarden close out strong. And while Queens of the Stone Age kicked out songs I love, like “Go With The Flow” & “No One Knows” ,with the sun setting and beams of light bouncing off the river and silhouetting the people on the lawn.. man that 8-10 minutes right there may have been the greatest moment of my life(well, besides Jen Cartiglia). We had from what I counted 5 of us Concert Confessioners in attendance- Myself, TheNaturalStoner & Mr. Sparkly in one tent trying to get texts through to Phishbeard to meet up with us, while at the same time we tried to gain WiFi to find Jakob. The whole Washington experience blew me away, and the show being that epic wasn’t hurting matters either. Camped out afterward sleeping on a folding chair using a sleeping bag as a blanket starring up at the stars, which I can actually see in a state without the air pollution that New York City contains. Woke everyone around us camping up early due to my phone’s alarm clock still being on east coast time. The video I share below is not one that I shot, but shot by TheNaturalStoner. Since I was standing right next to him anyway, and his camera is way better then mine, here you go: [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iou9tnsHt6w&w=640&h=360]

Honorable Mentions!!

I seriously wanted to put Charlie Sheen’s Violent Torpedo of Truth tour in here, but I didn’t want to take the crap from all the trolls out there who DIDN’T attend…But damn that was a pretty freaking epic night, awesome times with friends.. hence it’s honorable mention.

-Phish, Night 1 of their MSG New Years Eve run was pretty funky as well, had this list not been done before I attended the show on 12/28/11, it would have been up for nomination

Jakob’s Top 10 Concerts of the Year

Jakob’s Top 10 Concerts of the Year

 

I’ve been to a ton of concerts this year, thanks in part to my awesome Dad for putting up with my concert-going needs. Well out of the many I’ve been to this year, here are my top 10. I am not doing top 10 live bands, but the top 10 shows. So here we go.

10. Social Distortion 02/12/11 – Showbox SoDo – Seattle, WA

Although I didn’t write a review of this show (I hadn’t discovered CC yet), this is the show that kicked off my 2011 concert season. Punk legends Social Distortion playing three sold out nights in a row in Seattle is just an outstanding feat. They played a great setlist and they were loud and crazy. Mike Ness and the boys may be kinda old, but they still put out great music and put on great shows (Photo from 10/29/11).

9. Matisyahu 07/28/11 – Oregon Zoo – Portland, OR

Two days before seeing Soundgarden at the Gorge, I was seeing Hassidic reggae/rapper Matisyahu at the Portland Zoo. Matisyahu put on an energetic, albeit short, concert to a mostly Jewish crowd (I think there was a Hebrew school field trip there). There was certainly more weed than I expected, but it was a cool show with great vibes. Oh and being Jewish makes it more of a rite of passage than a concert.

8. Bush 09/15/11 – Neptune Theater – Seattle, WA

I also had the pleasure of not only seeing but also being the youngest person seeing 90s post-grunge superstars Bush. After a decade-long breakup, the British band got back together for a tour that hit theaters and small clubs. Seeing them at the brand new venue The Neptune Theater just made it that much cooler, and Bush put on a brilliant show that rocked very hard. Gavin Rossdale sings better than I’ve ever heard him before.

7. Bumbershoot Music Festival 09/04/11 – Seattle, WA

Bumbershoot is an annual music/arts festival that takes place at the Seattle Center. While 2010’s festival sported big name acts like Weezer, Bob Dylan, Mary J. Blige, Meat Puppets, Hole, and Rise Against, this year’s festival was headlined by Wiz Khalifa, Presidents of the United States of America, Ray LaMontagne, and Hall and Oates. I was almost not gonna go until I won tickets for day 2 of the festival. I was able to see bands like The Kills (kind of), Butthole Surfers, Atari Teenage Riot, NoMeansNo, and internet comedy act The Gregory Brothers.

6. System of a Down 05/13/11 – Key Arena – Seattle, WA

The recently reunited alternative metal band System of a Down did a short west coast tour earlier this year, including Seattle’s own Key Arena. Not only that, but they chose gypsy punk collective Gogol Bordello to open for them, a band I happen to love. Both bands put on amazing shows, with SOAD playing a 29-song set. It was also my very first review. (Read with caution).

5. Echo Movement 07/13/11 – Studio Seven – Seattle, WA

Unfortunately, there are people out there unaware of Echo Movement’s mind-warpingly fantastic music. Lead singer Stephen Fowler and his brother, keyboardist, Dave, are the greatest songwriting duo since Lennon-McCartney. They inspire nothing but good vibes, and they are some of the nicest dudes ever. So take their motto to heart, and “listen to Echo Movement.”

4. Zeds Dead (12/9):

Say what you will about dubstep, I love it. The overall energy and feel of it just makes me want to get up and dance way more than Ke$ha ever will. Skrillex has more talent in his ridiculous glasses than Ke$ha does in her whole body. Well anyway, Toronto-based dubstep duo Zeds Dead (named after the famous Pulp Fiction quote) rocked the house with their rockin’ house music (see what I did there?). After numerous songs mashed into one (nonstop!), they encored with The Pixies‘ Where is My Mind?, and Weezer’s Say It Ain’t So. Long story short, see a dubstep show.

3. Deck the Hall Ball 2011 12/07/11 – Key Arena – Seattle, WA


After days of bugging my dad to get me tickets to this show, I had to settle with the upper seating area of Key Arena. It was ok, though. I had a great view of great bands such as Mumford and Sons, Death Cab for Cutie (blech), Cage the Elephant, Foster the People, Young the Giant, Two Door Cinema Club, and Grouplove. The show was almost overwhelming with its sheer beauty, and it may have been more of a Christmas show (I am Jewish), but it was still wonderful.

2. Sasquatch 2011 Day 1 05/27/11 – Gorge Amphitheater – George, WA


Unfortunately, I only had the opportunity to see one night of the world-famous Sasquatch Festival. Fortunately, though, I was able to see Foo Fighters, one of the biggest bands in the galaxy. I also got the chance to see newly reunited garage rock duo Death From Above 1979, and new punk lords Against Me! The drive to the Gorge that day may have been difficult, but dancing to “Everlong” with strangers totally made up for it (Click here to read our review of Sasquatch Day 1 from our pals thenaturalstoner and Phishbeard.

1. Soundgarden w/ Queens of the Stone Age, Mastodon, and Meat Puppets 07/30/11 – The Gorge – George, WA


No doubt, this is the best show I’ve been to. Not only did I have the opportunity to see the newly reunited Gods of grunge metal, but I got to see them with alt-rock stoners Queens of the Stone Age, muscular man metal band Mastodon, and classic indie rockers Meat Puppets. PLUS: I got to see them at the beautiful and fantastic Gorge Amphitheater. Soundgarden played through their classics, and I left the Gorge feeling tired and sore. Twas an awesome show.

I hope you enjoyed my Top 10!

Here’s to another great year of concerts. *coughREDHOTCHILIPEPPERS*cough*TOOL*cough*NOELGALLAGHER*cough*BONNAROO*

-Jakob

thenaturalstoner’s Top 10 Shows of 2011

thenaturalstoner’s Top 10 Shows of 2011

2011 was undoubtedly my finest concert going year on record (out of 31!).  I saw over 80 bands, did several awesome road trips, brought in visitors from around the country to come to the Gorge Amphitheatre, and almost all my shows were at least ‘decent’.  Obviously some rise to the top, and some fall to the bottom… so here is my list of best concerts of 2011.

10) Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings 05/30/11 – The Gorge – George, WA (Sasquatch Festival)

I had seen Sharon Jones a couple years ago sing backup to Phish in Indio, California, so I was very excited to finally see one of Sharons own sets with the entire Dap-Kings. My only complaint is that I wish it was longer!  Sharon was amazing and I got to meet her after her set over in the meet and greet area (AWESOME idea Sasquatch), which was a super cool experience.  After Chromeo and Sharons sets, the final day on Sasquatchs mainstage was off to a blistering Monday afternoon start!

9) Foo Fighters 05/27/11 – The Gorge – George, WA (Sasquatch Festival)

I love Foo Fighters and this was my first chance to see them live.  Well, let me take that back, I had one prior opportunity and didn’t exactly “make it to the show” that night.  Over 10 years later, I got my second chance and the Foos rocked me just like I wanted.  Headlining Sasquatchs first ever Friday night, the Foo Fighters rocked my face off.

8) Modest Mouse 05/29/11 – The Gorge – George, WA (Sasquatch Festival)

When I made my festival review immediately after the Sasquatch Festival, I put this Modest Mouse set as number one on my list.  Over time, perspective pushed Chromeo over that for me, however this set was a monster, and something I was desperately looking for that weekend.  Going into Sasquatch I was hoping some band I have heard but never appreciated would turn me into a fan, and Modest Mouse did that FAR more than any other.  I am looking at you Wilco, Death Cab, etc.

7) Soundgarden 07/30/11 – Gorge Amphitheater – George, WA

A huge 4 band lineup, including the Meat Puppets, Queens of the Stone Age and Mastodon, concluded with Soundgardens tour closer at the Gorge, a “hometown” show finale.  The experience of meeting ConcertConfessions own Jay Porks and having Soundgarden live up to all my expectations made this a huge weekend stop in central Washington!  I even did a Babe Ruth called shot right before Pretty Noose.  Ahhh good times…

6) Eddie Vedder 07/15/11 Benaroya Hall – Seattle, WA

If it wasn’t for the following nights epicness, this show would have left a much higher imprint on me.  A fantastic show, in a beautiful venue, and getting the opportunity to tell Krist Novoselic “Thank you”, and get a “You’re welcome” back, made this a once in a lifetime night.  Thanks the Jesus I got into these shows after 5 attempts at various online ticket sales.


5) Chromeo 05/30/11 – The Gorge – George, WA (Sasquatch Festival)

I think Chromeo’s Tweet following the show says it all: “Moved to tears, Sasquatch.”

4) Ween 07/02/11 – Les Schwab Amphitheater – Bend, OR

A fun road trip to Bend, Oregon with several friends left us with a great Ween weekend.  Poopship Destroyer, Monique the Freak, Slow Down Boy, Waynes Pet Youngin, etc were great, but when Baby Bitch was played, and then Birthday Boy followed, this show got real.  What a moment!  Ween treats us well in the Northwest! Staying at the Rainbow Motel in Bend was the icing on the cake! Here is Poopship Destroyer from ConcertConfessions own Phishbeard.

3) Phish 08/06/11 – Gorge Amphitheater – George, WA

A show that felt exactly opposite from the night before to me flow wise.  The show got GREAT at the end, instead of a solid start. Reba with whistling, a teaseful Antelope and a super encore with Sanity and a Suzy Greenberg that I needed to hear to get off my stats list (even though I “saw” it at Festival 8). And the pizzadillas!!!!

2) Phish 08/05/11 – Gorge Amphitheater – George, WA

What a JAM!  Rock and Roll > Fire on the Mountain Jam (I still insist this happened) > Meatstick > Boogie On Reggae Woman was one of the best segues thrown down in years.  If the set didn’t go limp after Boogie On this could have been a number one contender.  This Rock and Roll jam gets to hang out up with the Boise AC/DC Bag and Inglewood Bathtub Gin as favorite Jams of my life. Getting to have Reverend Justito make it up to our neck of the woods for his first ever Gorge shows made this a perfect weekend.  One of the best camping setups we’ve ever had at Phish too. We did this weekend right. Here is a GREAT Roggae, with an unusually long (great!!) jam, that the Rev got on tape:

1) Eddie Vedder 07/16/11 Benaroya Hall – Seattle, WA

When I look back at all the concerts I have ever been to, again 31 years worth, two specifically stand out to me as “best evers”. My first Phish show, 7/17/98 at the Gorge, and a random Phish show on a Tuesday night in Boise back in 1999 where the band decided to produce a set as grand as any they have ever played.  The only way I know how to describe this Eddie Vedder show is to say that it is on the same level as those two Phish shows from the late 90s.  This was no doubt one of the best concert experiences of my life, and gave me an exuberant feeling of positivity that I wasn’t sure still existed in this world (it had been 12 years since something hit me like this after all). Everything about this night was perfect, highlighted by an astounding mid-set run of: Needle and the Damage Done > Long Road > Wishlist > Man of the Hour > I Am Mine that rivals anything I have ever seen.

 

Just missed the cut: Major Lazer, John Prine, Big Boi, Meat Puppets, Hall and Oates, Sleigh Bells.

Biggest Disappointment: The Flaming Lips, The Gorge Sasquatch Festival. Described as a “Soft Bulletin” set (we didn’t even get the whole album), this gig was full of distractions (who sings ‘Happy Birthday’ to a music Festival mid Album set?) and too much wandering banter from Wayne Coyne. For my first Lips show, I was hoping for a LOT more.

Funny moment on video: I had a funny thing happen during Flogging Molly at the Sasquatch Festival.  Near the end of recording video of ‘Don’t Shut Em Down’, some guy taps me on the shoulder and says, “Vomits running down onto your bag!”. I look down and sure as shit the lady about 5 feet behind me had puked and it was streaming down below my feet!  See 3:10 into this vid!

 

Worst show: The Presidents of the United States of America, Cub Ballroom, Pullman, WA. Just terrible.

You know what else was cool?: Giving Marcus Trufant a “Go Cougs!” at Lil Wayne at the White River Amphitheatre in Auburn, WA!

My own downloadable audio recording:

  1. Blue Scholars entire set, 10/29/11 The Belltower in Pullman, WA  http://www.mediafire.com/?pyejjt21tsmyb9r

Jay Porks Heads Out West for Soundgarden, QOTSA, Mastodon & The Meat Puppets! 7/30/11

Spent much of this weekend just staring around in amazement, repeating the phrase “Holy freaking God” over and over again. This is a special 53rd installment of the Jay Porks Never Ending Concert Series as it took us to Newark Airport, where I hopped on a plane and came out to Washington State(Home of the Cougs) to meet up with some of the Northwest chapter of Concert Confessions: thenaturalstoner ,Mr Sparkly (Who Are Hosting Me) and possibly another 3 as at last check we were to have five Concert Confessioners  who will be in attendance at the Gorge Amphitheater in George, WA for the epic bill of Soundgarden, Queens of the Stone Age, Mastodon, and The Meat Puppets on an awesome summer Saturday … Had NOOOO idea what I was getting myself into..

‘We’re not at PNC Bank Arts Center anymore’ is the thought in my head as we start to drive into the campground.. yea that’s right I said it, campground. A sea of tents pitched everywhere, people getting wasted everywhere; and this place was about 1000 times the size of ANY venue I’ve ever been to in my homeland on the Least coast. If I was at this show by myself, there’s no way camping out all night would’ve even been a thought in my head. We don’t camp in NYC, we take sweaty train rides after shows and get home at 2AM… but there I was after the show sleeping on a folding chair outside the tent using a sleeping bag as a blanket , but trust me we will get to all that later.

So we pitch a tent, camp out and pre-funk for a little while.. we decide to head down to the box office and claim the photo passes that were left for us through me via Meat Puppets personnel.. To not run off on a tangent here, lets just send out thanks over to those imbeciles (Livenation) that run the box office at this place for fucking that photo pass experience up for me. If I wasn’t walking over this hill and seeing heaven on the other side, I’d be super pissed-as opposed to just really pissed.

So after several up hill climbs through the scorching hot sun (Yea, I came to Washington State and didn’t see one drop of rain, not one CLOUD my entire time here! False advertisement right there-I thought I was escaping the heat), we finally make it to the the gigantic mountainside that is The Gorge Amphitheater.. I’ve been to venues with lawn based seating, but this is ONLY lawn seating and the hill is a hell of a lot of steeper then the one at PNC in Homdel or that similar, bigger venue in Camden, NJ.. and it’s not a polluted highway behind the stage, it’s a freaking river. It’s like this piece of land split in half causing a canyon to open-and they placed a stage in the middle. I know I sound a little too blown away by seeing the Northwest -but I’m from the city, this is all new to me. A one mile stretch without a cement building is something I’ve never seen before-let alone a valley(or a “Gorge” they might say).

Meat Puppets come out at 6PM with the guns blazing, they were heavy from the start..I knew it was gonna be “Oh, Me”  to kick it off by the sound of the guitar jingles.. but I didn’t know they were going to come out that intense with it. I was thrilled to see as many people down on the cement area in front of the stage(every part of this place is general admission-lawn tickets get you everywhere here) can walk down to the front and get rocking out.. Because I know a lot of people are missing them right now, and that sucks. Jumped into “Sam”, the lyrical demonstration that it is..moving faster than R.E.M.’s “It’s the end of the world as we know it”.. Then “Plateau”, which was fitting considering we hiked many hills and plateau’s to arrive where we are. Except there was way more “nothing at the top” at this Plateau, there was the freaking Meat Puppets right in front of me for the seventh time. It was the first time I’ve ever seen Curt Kirkwood use his Les Paul live with my own eyes before, the six times on the east coast I’ve seen them he played his teal Fender Strat.. That’s a query I need answered: Is it a coastal thing? Not like they sound any different, it’s just something that’s been in the back of my mind for a while. “Backwater” followed, the one Meat Puppets song I was able to get played on the radio when I was the in-studio guest at my local college radio station a week ago(88.9FM WSIA or www.WSIA.fm), so we were diggin our heels in, and again I loved the people up front so into it. That one time I caught the Pups as a first opener there was like 30 of us there at a 3500+ capacity venue it saddened me.. so glad I’m in WA. When they followed Backwater with “Sloop John B” (Beach Boys cover) I started getting really excited. Not for Sloop John B so much as for the fact that I was completely sold on the fact they would play “Hey Baby Que Paso”, I’ve been going over the lyrics to the song with the kitchen staff at my day job for months. Then I recognize the little lead in that’s about to be “Lake of Fire”.. as much as I love that freakin’ song, it hurt like a stab in the chest because I knew the set was ending in a little over 7 minutes when the end this song.. Damn, I figured this venue would give them at least 40 mins, they got a half hour, if not less. Again I’m not exactly from around these parts, but I know for a fact that the Meat Puppets didn’t request to only play six songs. I think doors should’ve opened earlier and had longer sets for the bands. It’s not like we’re in a residential area here-we’re all camping here all night.. I just don’t get it. The boys were done at 6:30

Which brings me to my next point: If there’s one band to remove from this bill to make this a full out amazing Ménage à trois of great bands playing long sets, which one would it be? Who’s the odd man out here? Then at 6:48 when Mastodon came out and we started to make our way back up the lawn, that was the question wondered aloud. And lets not take this as a shot at Mastodon, they do what they do and judging by the herds of people heading down for their set-they do it well. Caught them on the BlackDiamondSkye tour at it’s Madison Square Garden stop …so as they plowed through their 40 minutes set while we were walking up the mammoth lawn, they were plenty loud enough where we heard the entire set no matter how far away from the stage we went.

Another wild card to the evening, what is Queens of the Stone Age going to play? They’ve been on a album-themed tour, playing their first record in it’s entirety.. and we just had a 30 minute set followed by a 40 minute set. It’s 7:53 when they came out, there is a lot of show left tonight.

Not recognizing the first four songs was the indicator that this first album thing was going down. First song I recognized was “Giveth Then Take It Away”.. a little while later we had Josh Homme, who is the man by the way, saying “everyone’s waiting for it to get dark so they could do all those things they can’t do in the light” … introduced a song called “Make It Wit-Chu”, saying it was a song for the ladies. Then suddenly out of no where we turn and two people just got engaged during the song-now obviously that guy was aware of what the set list was going to be, we should’ve found him… from that guy popping the question and onward was magic.. my eyes are drawn to the left, as I notice the sun is beginning to set. I know it’s happens everyday, but man during those last three songs “Little Sister”, “Go with the Flow” and “No One Knows” with the sun setting and beams of light bouncing off the river, silhouetting the people on the lawn.. man that 8 minutes or so right there may have been the greatest moment of my life (well, besides Jen Cartiglia of course). They went off at 8:43.. epicness

So it’s coming up on 9 and Soundgarden is on deck.. Little note to keep in mind for the duration of Soundgarden’s set-I hate Eddie Vedder, and I hate Pearl Jam-personal preference, lets not muddy this up. Anyway, being the last show on Soundgarden’s tour and being in their backyard(even though Eddie Vedder is from California,he wears flannel so he can say he’s from there) combined with my luck I had a bad feeling we’d be having a Temple of the Dog section of the set and me in tears during everyone’s glee. All the awesome stuff I’ve seen over here in Washington, this gorgeous venue, this epic adventure can easily be turned into another Jay Porks Bogus Journey. I hate to be the one guy in the building praying for it not to happen(no I don’t), but I think I’m the only one in the building who traveled 3000+ miles for this. If would be the equivalent to finding out the hottest girl you know has a penis.

Save the suspense, as we can read in Jakob’s review, there was no PJ sighting, no Vedder appearances, no Hunger Strike or whatever non sense it is that they do…Also in Jakob’s review he mentions the bootleg tee shirts they were selling outside the venue.. it had all four bands listed on it. Not only did it have the wrong Meat Puppets drummer on it in the picture, but above the words Queens of the Stone Age was a picture of Pearl Jam. I, of course, bought this shirt. With Vedder staring right at me, didn’t notice it til the next day.. (I can’t get away from this guy). So besides that, I’m also thinking “How is Soundgarden going to top this? Seriously, what are they going to do, play a 2 hour set of nothing but their best?”

To answer the question in my last paragraph-Hell yes. It’s exactly what Soundgarden did. The sky was still a bit pink as the sun was behind the mountains. I don’t care how far away I was the sound if freaking golden on some of these videos I got.. 9:10 was the official first riff. And speaking of video, “Spoonman” was the 2nd song in.. “Gun” followed. This place is rocking like I’ve never seen a place rock before. And I got to see “Jesus Christ Pose”! For that girl screaming it in the row in front of me at Town Hall a few weeks back for Cornell’s Acoustic Songbook tour. See, 2 years ago when Soundgarden said they were getting back together, I didn’t think I’d have to wait this long to see them-I thought they’d do some heavy touring-they never did. So these guys were going to have to earn it blowing me away tonight.. and when “Blow up the Outside” smacked me in the face, I knew they were doing just that. Seeing Cornell acoustic songbook tour gave me a reminder that I needed to see this band live, one day, some how. Blow up the Outside at Town Hall just didn’t pack the punch that I needed it too-now here, it’s laying heavy fists to my face repeatedly..

 Just an observation here, what’s up with the little slowed down version of “Black Hole Sun”? That’s the song I need to blow up in my face, not the song I can’t wait to hear toned down a bit-but that’s my only critique here about this set, and its minor. I’m just sayin’.. he’s screaming like hell on every other song so it’s not like he’s voice is out.. And then it was only 10:18 when the song ended, which begs the question: So when do they start packing up here? I’m not used to seeing bands just keep playing awesome songs for hours .. everyone else had short sets, who knows.. And keep in mind Vedder walking around the back of my head, me thinking I was going to have to walk out and meet the group at the campground.. Out of no where, Chris Cornell, in one of the more humorous displays I’ve seen, got pissed off that the NBA took Seattle’s basketball team. I don’t know what got him, maybe he spotted a Sean Kemp jersey in the crowd- but he starts saying “Man, they fucking took away our team-It’s fucking bullshit to take away a basketball team!”

Fell on Black Days, My Wave..-they’re still kicking out the fucking jams. During “Burden in my Hand” I asked thenaturalstoner if the lyrics were actually “I shot my load today”.. then around 10:40 he turns and is like “Pretty Noose and I’m good”.. Freaking psychic is what he is, and I forgot how much I love that song. Played “Rusty Cage” and “Head Down” right before it….By now I’m playing with house money, I had stopped taking pictures(or little video snippets) for a while to just sit back and enjoy this.. I’m in the Pacific Northwest watching Soundgarden tear the place apart. We kept saying to each other (Mr Sparkly by now is down front and apparently found Phish Beard) “So what else you think they got?, what else can they play?”

Well they could play , “Head Down” and“Outshined”before topping us off with  “Superunknown” before ducking off at 10:52, only to come back out at 10:56 and rock three more songs. On the last song they rocked out and eventually drifted into a pure feedback orgy.. it made me want to cream my pants. They distorted sounds from 11:13 to 11:20, and that’s when the sound was turned down.. it was over.

This is usually the time where I gloat about catching whatever scheduled train I need.. but not the case tonight.. we’re climbing back up the hill and all the way down back to the campsite, where we will spend the night in the tent.. not for nothing, NYC’s been sweltering the last few weeks.. and here, unlike home, when the sun goes down it actually cools off significantly.. I had an extremely comfortable folding chair, plenty of bud and brews- I said “fuck it , pass my sleeping bag over, now it’s a blanket”. After the show while we’re (Me and thenaturalstoner until Mr Sparkly eventually showed up, minus Phishbeard) discussing the night’s proceedings (so glad to be at a show with these dudes, usually when I’m telling a random cab driver or some stranger about an epic night, I spend most of the discussion explaining to them who the bands are. NY is so lame).. main topic is Sparkly being quoted to saying he was “Underwhelmed”.  And we’re just about to delve into this deep convo about what show he was watching,  those dickheads camped out next to us who where annoying as hell before the show ended up showing up and annoyed the crap out of us all over again. All of a sudden the drummer has a mouth. These dudes say they’re in a band that “sounds like NOFX and Blink 182” named after some actor I can’t remember the name of now. Anyway, your band sounds like NOFX/Blink 182? Yea, that’s just about the time we called it a night.

A side note, my alarm on my phone set to 930 eastern time woke us, and the rest of the surrounding campers up.. seems I’m the only one who didn’t hear it until I was awoken.. So we packed up, and headed into Spokane to catch Willie Nelson at the Northern Quest Casino and Resort before I fly home Monday… Awesomeness.

Soundgarden/Queens of the Stone Age/Mastodon/Meat Puppets at the Gorge!!! 7/30/11

Soundgarden/Queens Of The Stone Age/Mastodon/Meat Puppets 07/30/11

Gorge Amphitheater – George, WA

Words/Photos by Jakobross424

On July 30, two epic concerts graced the west coast. One of them was LA Rising, which featured Rage Against the Machine, Muse, and Rise Against. The other was at the Gorge Amphitheater in George, Washington. The bands included Soundgarden, Queens of the Stone Age, Mastodon and Meat Puppets. Many other Concert Confessions writers were there that night, so here was one side to the same story. My dad and I got to the Gorge with little to no trouble. We didn’t get lost, there was no traffic, we got a good parking spot, and we arrived an hour and a half before doors opened. So with time to kill, we cranked up the Echo Movement and we chilled. At around 3:15 or so, a heavy metal looking dude with a nipple ring came up to us and asked us if we wanted to buy a shirt. I’d experienced this before, it was a bootleg. But it was cool and $20, so we bought it. I looked at the back where it showed all the bands, and saw a picture of Pearl Jam above the Queens of the Stone Age logo. Upon questioning the heavy metal looking dude, we found out that there was a rumor that Pearl Jam would play a few songs and that got me even more excited about the show.

Before going into the line, my dad had to get his wrist band so he could purchase alcohol, which is funny because I don’t think he drank at all that night. So we are in that line and it’s my dad’s turn and I am right behind him. My dad hands the dude his ID, and receives his wrist band. I wanted to have a little fun, so I said to the security guy, “I forgot my ID at home,” which got a laugh. We went to the real line at about 3:30 and we were towards the front of one of the lines. First, the VIP/Fan Club members were let in and then us regular people were let in. When we got inside, I bought a legal shirt and my dad bought a Queens of the Stone Age shirt. We bought some water to fill our Camelbak with, and we made our way to the amphitheater in hopes to find something to do for two hours until Meat Puppets came on. We sat in the shade, ate some mediocre food, and at about 5:30, we stood up in the crowd to wait for the Meat Puppets.

After a quick sound check, I immediately saw Curt Kirkwood arrive on stage, followed by the drummer (whatever his name is) and Curt’s brother Cris. They immediately broke into “Oh, Me” and they were jamming out. Curt didn’t sound great, but I wouldn’t expect him to since that song was written almost thirty years ago. Next was “Sam,” the song I was looking forward to most. If you don’t know the song, Curt and Cris both sing incredibly fast. Like 400 words a minute or something. And it’s great to see that they both still know the words and can sing them without any mistake.

Then they played “Plateau,” an odd song about nothing in particular, I think. After that, they played their biggest main stream hit “Backwater,” which sounded amazing. The Kirkwood brothers’ harmonies together sounded better than Tom DeLonge and Mark Hoppus by a mile. After that they played “Sloop John B,” a song originally written by the Beach Boys. Then they finished their too-short set with “Lake of Fire,” which, for some reason, induced a mosh pit. People are stupid when they are drunk. Meat Puppets finished their elongated jam version of “Lake of Fire,” and if there was anything I could’ve changed about the entire show, it would’ve been that Meat Puppets would’ve played longer. They were so great, and even at the ripe old age of 50-something, the Kirkwood brothers can still rock harder than Black Veil Brides ever will.

Sort of at the last minute, I decided that I didn’t care to see Mastodon. So my dad and I walked around, shared a funnel cake, and listened for the cue that Mastodon was done. When they finished playing “Blood and Thunder,” they left the stage and my dad and I went into the pit to wait for Queens of the Stone Age.

The roadies started setting up the back drop for Queens of the Stone Age, which was the detective notes for the assassination of JFK. Why they chose that, I will never know. Somewhere around 8:00, QOTSA came on stage. Josh Homme spoke in his lovely country accent, telling us how beautiful the Gorge was and how happy they were to open for Soundgarden. QOTSA broke into “You Think I Ain’t Worth a Dollar, But I’m a Millionaire,” which was a relatively short song. Afterwards they played “3’s and 7’s” and the hits just kept coming. They played songs like “Burn the Witch,” “Little Sister,” “Go With the Flow,” “No One Knows,” and “A Song for the Dead.”

The band sounded so great and the crowd was really into it. The problem was the two moshing idiots in front of me. One of them looked like the creepy dude in the Die Antwoord “Enter the Ninja” video.

When QOTSA left the stage, my dad decided he didn’t want to be in the pit during Soundgarden, so he left and went to the very back, while I stayed where I was. Some dude made his way through the crowd with his hand up to his mouth. He passed me and a few others, and then found out what happens when you drink a lot of alcohol.

After a sound check and some technical difficulties involving the images on the screen, we were ready to let the Sun set on the Gorge while Soundgarden jammed away. We heard some feedback and then what was certainly the opening bit of “Searching With My Good Eye Closed,” (This is my good eye; do you know a cow; a pig says; this is a rooster; the Devil says.) The band broke into that song and played it like it was nobody’s business. Chris Cornell sounded better than I expected him to. Ben Shepherd wandered the stage, made funny faces, and was a very entertaining performer. Matt Cameron banged the drums like a gun was being held to his head. And Kim Thayil looked like a gun was being held to his head if he didn’t reunite with Soundgarden. He had a smile on his face, but it didn’t seem like he was enjoying any part of it.

Soundgarden broke into hit after hit. They played “Spoonman,” “Blow Up the Outside World,” “The Day I Tried to Live,” “Superunknown,” “Slaves and Bulldozers,” “Black Hole Sun,” “Outshined,” “Rusty Cage,” and so many more that I can’t even remember. They even played some old songs like “Gun” and “Beyond the Wheel.”

I was in a lot of pain after the show, and my hopes that Pearl Jam would come out were crushed. No Pearl Jam. Just Matt Cameron. Not even Eddie Vedder would come out and play “Hunger Strike” with Soundgarden. It wouldn’t be much of a Temple of the Dog reunion since 5/6 of TOTD is Pearl Jam, but whatever. All in all, one of the best shows I have ever seen.

So I hope that Justito had a good time at the RATM show, because I definitely did. Unfortunately I didn’t run into any of my Concert Confessions peers, but I met a guy named Jeremy who saw Slightly Stoopid last weekend. That’s just as good, right?

Soundgarden 07/09/11: Jones Beach – Wantagh, NY

Soundgarden (w/ Coheed and Cambria) 07/09/11

Jones Beach – Wantagh, NY

Words/Photos by Melorocker

The big sound of SOUNDGARDEN is back. I was a witness to one amazing performance from this “grunge” relic from the 90’s. Singer Chris Cornell delivered like a metal god that he is…or a grunge god. Not only did he match note for note what appears on the records, (Badmotorfinger and Superunknown) he exceeded on some of those notes and took us to new vocal heights. Did it matter that this was the 6th show of the tour, time will only tell?

The band was awesome as well. I have seen drum giants like Joey Jordison and Neil Peart and realized how Matt Cameron using a very economical looking drum set carried a big beat that helped the songs aquire their thunderous pounding. Guitar player Kim Thayil might not be a sexy name like an Eddie Van Halen but he sure knows how to make his guitar give that bite that makes us smile. Overall the stage was kept to a minimum – 2 backdrops and moderate lightning. It was all about the performance of the band rather than some fancy hydraulics machinery. This evening the support act was Coheed & Cambria.

Click here for the complete list of dates.

…and now for the amazing story…I was in front row for all of the show and had a blast. I walked away with a Chris Penne drum stick, a Claudio Sanchez guitar pick, a Chris Cornell guitar pick and I got to touch Claudio’s double neck white Gibson SG guitar.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWWxoEJo-9Y&feature=channel_video_title

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Soundgarden Announces Remaining Summer Tour Dates

Soundgarden, one of Seattles great all time bands, has announced the remainder of their 2011 Summer Tour. 

Spanning from July 2 through July 30, Soundgarden will hit up parts of Canada, the East Coast, Chicago and some West coast spots (Sorry to those of you in the South!). 

Guests opening random shows of the tour include Coheed and Cambria, Queens of the Stone Age, Mastodon, The Mars Volta and the Meat Puppets.  These will be shows NOT to be missed!

 

Full tour itinerary (Please note, I believe there is a typo on the Vancouver date on the Soundgarden website- likely to be July 29):

Date City Venue PreSale Times
July 2 Toronto, ON Molson Canadian Amphitheater On Sale Now
July 3 London, ON John Labatt Centre Mon, May 9, 10:00 am PDT
July 5 Ottawa, ON Ottawa Blues Fest On Sale Now
July 6 Uncasville, CT Mohegan Sun Arena Mon, May 9, 11:00 am PDT
July 8 Newark, NJ Prudential Center Mon, May 9, 9:00 am PDT
July 9 Wantagh, NY Nikon at Jones Beach Theatre Mon, May 9, 7:00 am PDT
July 10 Mansfield, MA Comcast Center for the Performing Arts Mon, May 9, 12:00 pm PDT
July 12 Fairfax, VA Patriot Center Tues, May 10, 9:00 am PDT
July 13 Philadelphia, PA Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing On Sale Now
July 14 Atlantic City, NJ Borgata Spa & Resort Event Center Tues, May 10, 10:00 am PDT
July 16 Chicago, IL UIC Pavilion Tues, May 10, 11:00 am PDT
July 18 Morrison, CO Red Rocks Amphitheater On Sale Now
July 21 San Francisco, CA Bill Graham Civic Auditorium Tues, May 10, 1:00 pm PDT
July 22 Inglewood, CA The Forum On Sale Now
July 23 Las Vegas, NV The Joint Tues, May 10, 2:00 pm PDT
July 19 Vancouver, BC Rogers Arena Tues, May 10, 3:00 pm PDT
July 30 George, WA The Gorge Amphitheater Tues, May 10, 4:00 pm PDT

 

SPECIAL GUESTS:
Coheed and Cambria: all shows 7/2-10 (Toronto, London, Ottawa, Uncasville, Newark, Wantagh, Mansfield)
The Mars Volta: all shows 7/12-23 (Fairfax, Philadelphia, Atlantic City, Chicago, Morrison, San Francisco, Inglewood, Las Vegas)
Queens of The Stone Age, Meat Puppets: 7/29 (Vancouver)
Queens of The Stone Age, Mastodon, Meat Puppets: 7/30 (George, WA)

Soundgarden Announces Summer Tour

On the heels of a smoking solo performance by Chris Cornell in New York City last night, Soundgarden, one of Seattles finest bands, will be on tour this summer for the first time in ages!  Soundgardenworld.com announced the long awaited news just a few minutes ago.

 

Details are still being worked out, but the tour will run from July 2 to July 30.  Four initial dates have been posted:

Date City Venue Pre-sale Times
July 2 Toronto, ON Molson Canadian Amphitheatre Mon 4/18 10 am PDT
July 13 Philadelphia, PA Festival Pier at Penn’s Landing Mon 4/18 11:30 am PDT
July 18 Denver, CO Red Rocks Amphitheatre Mon 4/18 1:00 pm PDT
July 22 Los Angeles, CA The Forum Mon 4/18 2:30 pm PDT

Chris Cornell @ Town Hall NYC 4/13/11

Well I may never get a chance to see Soundgarden, but this sure as hell is a start! What goes on in those heads of yours people? Well whatever it is put it on pause because tonight 43rd edition of the Jay Porks Never Ending Concert Series takes us to Town Hall in the heart of NYC (West 43rd off Broadway) to witness a night of the ‘Acoustic Songbook Tour’ that Chris Cornell is currently on. There was a show here at this same venue last night too, we got lucky that this 2nd show got added because tickets sold out quickly.. I checked today on Stub Hub to see how much tickets were going for and the lowest cost I saw was like 180 bucks or something like that- my tickets were 35 plus the 9 dollars in fees. I got the balcony seats figuring Pam and I wouldn’t need to be headbanging in the pit for a show like this- plus there’s no way this place is bigger than Radio City Music Hall- so we should expect better pics( and hopefully video) from tonights proceedings as we did when we were #Winning on Sunday night.. I caught the 4:50 train to the ferry and the night officially got underway..

Got to Town Hall about 7pm, this massive brick building. Am I coming to vote for something, Town Hall? But actually when you walk in the place is pretty elegant- velvet ropes and all that stuff. Old style 1940’s movie theater seating..

I met up with Pam and headed inside just in time to catch the last two songs of William Elliot Whitmore (whoever that is) was the opener on as we walked in….he got through by 8:30… Walked by all those signs in the hallways that said “no video/audio recording”, device stuffed in my pocket behind an issue of the Village Voice and we were set-no pat downs or body scans.

Before Cornell came on Event staffers rolled in literally blowing whistles grabbing all our attention to shout out the following instructions: “NO FLASH PHOTOGRAPHY!!! NO AUDIO OR VIDEO RECORDING AND THAT INCLUDES YOUR CELL PHONE! YOU WILL BE EJECTED IF YOU ARE CAUGHT DOING SO!”

Okay then, if we’re gonna be such Nazis about it I’ll hold off on the video-just don’t anally rape me like the tone of your voice suggests your going to do. I screamed out “Then how’d I see all that video of last nights show on YouTube?!” to no response.

So about 9:15 our man of the night Chris Cornell hits the stage as the place goes wild. The stage is set up with six guitars lined against an amp- four of them acoustic and two electric. Electric guitars? Acoustic songbook? Turns out they were just a decorative element to the stage setting.

From his first greetings to the crowd you could hear how awesome the sound is gonna be in this place. He asks if anyone was here from last night, then says he’s gonna change things up a little bit tonight. Not sure if that’s good or bad right now-because the set list I saw from last nights show was pretty epic. .. first song he jumps into is “Dark Globe ”, covering the late great Syd Barrett-the sound in this venue is something to be mentioned again, the strums of the acoustic felt like I was on stage with the guy-now my friends we’ve got ourselves a ballgame! Before playing a song called “Ground Zero” he mentions how it’s about Hurricane Katrina, anyone else find that sort of odd?. But what I love about a show like this is the little stories that get told inbetween songs, like the origins of the song and such. For example before he jumped into “I Promise It’s Not Goodbye” he explained how he has a fan who used to write him letters and emails and stuff and he had a daughter with brain cancer. He says “One day he sent me a poem written from the perspective of his daughter-probably wanted notes on it or something but I read it and had to put music to it right away” then went on to play the song. Little knowledge nuggets you pick up at shows, gotta love it. So the building is kinda quiet (or quieter than most crowds I’ve been in) listening to Chris speak and sing his songs… Well, most of us were quiet. A row in front of me, two seats to the right there was this cool chick who we were chatting with before the show started and she warned us that the song request she’d be screaming out all night is “Jesus Christ Pose”.. Now just imagine an intimate quiet setting, everyone relaxing and then at every opportunity you hear a loud blistering fan scream “JESUS CHRIST POSE!!”. I mean it was hilarious-this is a section I can roll with… I bet there were a minority of people in the building who found that annoying, but I actually thought it was quite humorous.. Rather that then “Freebird” right? I thought so.

So this show is chugging along, I’m loving being in a seat for all this-the whole atmosphere makes me feel like an adult seeing a play on Broadway-the only difference being that this DOESN’T suck. A song I could get on board with, “Can’t Change Me” was followed by “You Know My Name”. Awesome already as we now begin to dig into the Audioslave catalog with “Wide Awake”. There were a lot of songs tonight I couldn’t name off the top of my head-so I worked with the “write down lyrics and google it later” motto. Didn’t really need it for “Call Me A Dog” though, that one sort of spelled itself out. And being a ‘Temple of the Dog’ song made it all make sense. I got myself lost in “Sunshower” while I was live tweeting pics and little comments all night long, but then my attention was grabbed by the sounds of that familiar riff and a roar from the crowd, as our first ‘Soundgarden’ of the night “Fell on Black Day” fell upon us. It’s weird because I want to be screaming singing along to it but it’s only Chris and his guitar up there so there’s not a lot of “noise” too drown me out you know. I’d be heard, and if I was someone who had singing talents I wouldn’t be here writing about it if you catch my drift. And are you freakin’ kidding me we’re jumping into “Blow Up The Outside World” next?! Little back to back ‘Soundgarden’ action-I can dig it. Chris you had me at hello!

Back to the ‘Audioslave’ with “I am the Highway” before he puts his guitar down and turns to a phonograph set up to his right. He says “I’m going to perform this as it was meant to be done” as he pulls out the vinyl and starts to play the track which is the piano part to “When I’m Down” while not playing guitar to anything to it.. pretty cool.. I start to smell pot and see a dubey being passed along the row in front of me.. I mean, if you take flash photography we’ll kill you but do all the drugs you want I guess. The only crime there was me not getting in on that as . “Sweet Euphoria” and “Heaven’s Dead” followed. Damn, I wish every night was like this-good music plus being comfortable make the night life as a “rock journalist” a lot less taxing. Back into Temple of the Dog mode with “Say Hello to Heaven” (one of Pam’s highlights of the evening) followed by “Seasons”… Then, I didn’t realize we we’re into the Led Zeppelin cover of “Thank You” until a few lines in..

Then, and you got me on this one, he plays “Sad Sad City” by a band called ‘Ghostland Observatory’.. he explains something to the effect of: “I wanted to translate this song from the electric stuff they use to guitar”. After that, he says “Okay everyone now lets stretch a little bit-stand up”.. so like half the place stands, I guess that wasn’t good enough as he jokingly says “okay now I’m telling you to stand up-everybody stretch it out”.. so we did-everyone in the building on their feet as we ran through two more from the Audioslave songbook- “Be Yourself” and “Doesn’t Remind Me” before he said thank you and went off at about 10:50….People are screaming “One more song!” chants.. people who’ve been to as many shows as I have-you know there’s an encore coming. And if there isn’t one you’d know before they turned the lights on. You get a feel for the shows after a while.

So of course, back out comes Mr. Cornell for a few more songs. All of a sudden the girl in the row in front of me like jumps out of her seat almost into the ceiling with exuberance as Cornell starts the riff for “Jesus Christ Pose”-but then stops abruptly while saying something that I couldn’t hear over the screaming crowd. That was some effed up shit for that chick screaming out “Jesus Christ Pose” all night(which people seated downstairs said they heard loud and clear all night) to be teased like that. Maybe he did it just to mess with her-wouldn’t that be cruel and awesome at the same time? Interesting moment to say the least before we broke into “Black Hole Sun”-started thinking of the memorable music video. Then the token Beatles cover “A Day in the Life” followed by some solo Lennon action with “Imagine” before playing another ‘Audioslave’-“Like a Stone”… While listening to it in its raw acoustic form, I turned to Pam and said “You know I really love this song” and she agreed as we got back to listening to it being the final song of the evening, with Cornell getting a stand ovation and heading off at about 11:15PM..

Incredible evening all around. I mean, besides the show being unique and highly entertaining-the commute(via Public Transportation) to this venue from my house is about as easy as it gets for me AND the rain tapered off and I didn’t feel a drop. Smooth as the red velvet seats at Town Hall, a place I will hopefully be visiting again.

Well, that’s it for me as it’s reaching 5AM and I’m due for a nap before work at 12.. Thanks you all for participating if you made it this far down, and I leave you with tonight’s set list in more readable form below, plus a reminder that I’ll meet all of you back here on Tuesday the 19th as we’ll head out to Terminal 5 to see PJ Harvey! Thanks again people- LATE!

Set List:

-Dark Globe(Syd Barrett)
-Ground Zero
-I promise it’s not goodbye
-Can’t change me
-You know my name
-Wide Awake (Audioslave)
-Call me a dog (Temple of the Dog)
-Sunshower
-Fell on black days (Soundgarden)
-Blow up the Outside World (Soundgarden)
-I am the Highway (Audioslave)
-When I’m Down (sings along to phonograph)
-Sweet Euphoria
“heavens dead”
-Say Hello to Heaven (Temple of the Dog)
-Seasons
-Thank You (Led Zeppelin)
– Sad Sad City (Ghostland Observatory)
::At this point we were instructed to stand and stretch
-Be Yourself(Audioslave)
-Doesn’t Remind Me (Audioslave)
Encore
-Black Hole Sun(Soundgarden)
-A Day in the Life (Beatles)
-Imagine (John Lennon)
-Like a Stone (Audioslave)

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