Tag: Raleigh Amphitheater
First, Nick Lowe is cool. As Jeff Tweedy said when Lowe came out to accompany Wilco for two songs (including one of his own), “It’s okay to like Nick Lowe.” He was a perfect opener. He played solo, just him and his pretty, old Hummingbird. Sure, this is the guy that people mostly (if not only) know for “Cruel to Be Kind,” and that seemed to be the main criticism of him I was hearing. But I scoffed at these doubters – these fools would doubt anyone that Wilco choose to play with them. His guitaring was smooth, his lyrics were smart, and he was cool. Supreme.
Now, Wilco. ”Who’s your favorite band” can be a pesky question if you don’t have a ready answer. Wilco’s been mine since early high school. This span of favoritism has included weeks without their music and days of listening only to them, but even when I’m not listening to Wilco I know that I’d like to be. With 75 of their songs on my iTunes, adding up to more than five hours and 19 albums (and EPs, Singles, Compilations, etc.), they surely outnumber any other artist. (This doesn’t even include Loose Fur or any other side projects.) Plenty of their 4+ minute songs have over 30 plays, and the star ratings… plentiful. I love them.
So, hooray for Raleigh. We hosted Wilco’s new album (The Whole Love) release party, and we got a shout-out for housing their merchandiser, Kung Fu Nation. Many of my Wilco-friends thought The Whole Love has restored their faith in the band, and it’s their favorite album since (blablabla yadayadayada), etc. Yes, the new album kicks ass, but for me, so do the old albums–all of them. Songs from their Wilco album already feel like classics, and hell, so do half the songs from their newest album. They proved their range of greatness with a killer set and a magnificent encore. There’s nothing like knowing every song. This is their set list as recorded by me (comment corrections if necessary):
1. Art of Almost
2. I Might
3. Rising Red Lung
4. Ashes of American Flags
5. Bull Black Nova
6. I Am Trying To Break Your Heart
7. One Wing
8. Dawned On Me
9. Born Alone
10. Impossible Germany
11. Say You Miss Me
12. Whole Love
13. Pot Kettle Black
14. Handshake Drugs
15. War on War
16. Black Moon
17. One Sunday Morning
Shot In The Arm
36 Inches High (Song by Nick Lowe, with Nick Lowe)
I Love My Label (with Nick Lowe)
Red-Eyed and Blue
I’m The Man Who Loves You
One hell of a night. Tweedy called it out himself. Honestly, though… it could’ve been a little louder (and I had great, close seats). I’ll be glad to see them as many times as I can. They produce a poster for every single concert they put on. If that’s not some indication for how much they care about their shows, I’m not sure what is. You can always count on bits of Tweedy’s character in between songs. This evening was not filled with rants between each song, but there were a few gems to prove how personable he can be (plAAAtinum).
What to say about the Fleet Foxes concert? I don’t think I have ever been that wet in my entire life. There was a torrential downpour the entire concert, or what there was of a concert.
I arrived at the Raleigh Amphitheater toward the end of The Walkmen, the opening act. At this point the rain was fairly mild and I had a rain jacket and a towel so I was prepared. By the time Fleet Foxes started, the downpour began. They began by playing songs from their new album, Helplessness Blues. The rain made for a unique atmosphere. People wearing trash bags, people without shirts or shoes. Everyone was soaked. But people made the most of it, and at one point there was a parade of fans dancing and singing through the venue in the rain.
I enjoy all of Fleet Foxes’ albums but I have a special connection to their self titled album, so when they started playing songs from that one I was in bliss. They played “Your Protector” and “Ragged Wood.” Then suddenly, in the middle of “Ragged Wood” a speaker blew out. Fleet Foxes tried to continue playing but they had to stop. Then they said they had to take a break until the storm passed. So in the downpour we waited in limbo, not knowing whether the storm was going to pass at all. At that point, my rain jacket and dress were soaked through and I was dripping water. The storm started to get the best out of some people and fans began to gradually trickle out. My friends and I were stubborn and did not want to be defeated by Mother Nature, so us and other fans just stood in the rain hoping it would let up so we could hear some Fleet Foxes.
Fleet Foxes had to cover up all their equipment and were also just standing on the side of the stage hoping the storm would pass. After a while, the rain let up but they announced that they had to wait for the lightning to stop in order to play. Looking up at the sky I saw that there was lightning every five seconds or so, so it did not seem hopeful. A tech guy then came up to a microphone and stated that another storm was coming so Fleet Foxes would not be able to play again. The lead singer of Fleet Foxes then came onto the microphone and explained that they were sorry and if they could play, they would. He also complimented us Raleigh fans on being awesome for standing through the storm. He claimed they would try to make it back to Raleigh soon, and he sounded sincere.
Later on their Twitter they wrote “Raleigh: you were the most amazing audience we’ve ever had the honor to hang with, sticking it out in that crazy storm tonight.” And “Seeing you people in Raleigh tonight made me more proud to be a part of this than any other thing we’ve done. #thankyou #fucknature”
So in the end, the Fleet Foxes concert was definitely an experience, although the experience didn’t include as much music as I had hoped for.