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DeVotchKa - Paradise, Boston 5-18-2008

[music | DJ? Acucrack - Thalidomide]

Tonight was Devotchka, with Basia Bulat and Fancy Trash opening.

Plus some pics

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Sprung

[music | Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds - Albert Goes West]

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The Cure, Agganis Arena, Boston 5-12-2008

There are some bands that I just don't want to stand around and watch for 3 hours. Then there are others...

More, and lots of pics

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China Forbes

[music | Leonard Cohen - I'm Your Man]

Tonight is China Forbes @ The Paradise, Boston.

Natalie is the big Pink Martini fan here, I like them well enough, but she's the Lounge Music superfreak. We knew this wouldn't be loungey, but it was a very good show. She's a good song writer, and their performance was great. It was kind of an odd show because a huge part of the audience was friends and family (I guess she grew up in Cambridge), and so there was lots of in-joke back and forth.

The Grandmother stuff was the best. Her grandmother is 90 and apparently couldn't hear a thing, so Forbes was just hoping that everything "looks good anyway".

Opening was Lael Alderman, who is also the rhythm guitarist/everything-elsist for China Forbes' band. The audience was super light anyway, and not many people were there for his set, but he was good in a solo-male-singer/songwriter-Jack-Johnson sort of way. If you like Dashboard Confessional, you'll like Lael Alderman. I hope we were able to give him enough love from the 6 people in the audience at that point!

The main set was really entertaining, she pretty much played everything off of '78, and a couple of covers (R.E.M - Superman, Bryan Adams). The Bryan Adams song was good because of the story. This was her encore, and since no one in the audience seemed to go to many shows, they don't understand how encores work. When she said "It's been great playing here, hopefully we get back to Boston soon yadda yadda bye", everyone left. Every. One. So she said she had wanted to skip the encore but that the band made her do another song. So she told a story of Bryan Adams going back out on stage 30 minutes after a show in some stadium and playing to the few dozen stragglers who were still around.

Some of the people came back in after they started playing again. Many didn't :-)

A much higher percentage of my photos came out this time. Previously, I mentioned the blurry/grainy tradeoff I was willing to make, and I made it. I don't care, at least they're visible this time. No new camera however, the one I was trying to buy doesn't come out until June. Forcing ISO 400 and then playing with shutter speed seems to have done the trick largely. Maybe I'll put it at 200 next time for a while and see what happens.

Here they are:

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OUCH!

[music | The Pixies - Break My Body]

If you'll remember back a few months, I lost a toenail after catching a drunken pit guy at Rev. Horton Heat. In today's installment, it's a fingernail.

Today I was putting some switches in a rack, and was putting in cage nuts the un-safe way. With a screwdriver instead of a cage nut tool. Here's what the aftermath of that can look like unless you're more careful than I am.

I'm putting pictures behind here for people who are queasy:

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Saul Williams at the Paradise

[music | People Under The Stairs - More Than You Know]

What a surprisingly good show, I'm not surprised that it was a good show, but it was just amazingly good. Dragons of Zynth opened, who I'd never heard of, but I really liked them, and they will get my CD money. The first few songs reminded me of Smashing Pumpkins is a big way sound-wise, and their souled-up cover of Janie Jones really made my day, after learning I'd missed Mick Jones's band this past weekend.

Saul Williams was everything we wanted to see. Fantastic show and if you don't go see him you're a moron. Especially considering they were $15 tickets. Like many people, I came to him through Nine Inch Nails, with the tour a couple years back, and then Niggy Tardust, the album so nice, we bought it twice. The thing that motivated the audience most was his poetry. I wouldn't consider myself a huge fan of so called "urban poetry" as much, I think I associate the genre too much with Harold Perrineau. It's probably because I'm neither Urban nor a poet. I hang around in the city a lot, but I hardly think that makes me qualified to call myself Urban. In any case, his imagery was powerful and moving. His band was really tight, despite some on-stage tech problems, which happen all the time to everyone. The audience couldn't tell anyway. Well, I guess one guy yelled that he couldn't hear Williams' voice, but evidently that guy wasn't leaning on the stage, cause he sounded perfectly clear to me.

Natalie said that, even with all the shows we go to, this is right up there among her favorites, and I agree, energetic as hell, great lyrics, great sound, .

Williams' daughter came out for a couple of songs, she joined him on her spring break and was dancing like crazy and singing her head off. If all other career choices are unappealing to her, she could make for one of the great hype-men someday.

I'm glad Boston gave him such a great crowd, hopefully he'll come back around soon, as amazing as Niggy Tardust is, the live show was even better.

I swear that before Sunday's show I'll have a way faster camera. I'm getting really tired of having very non-grainy, usually blurry pictures. I want to swing that pendulum.

I only got a couple of decent photos, here they are:

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Dropkick Murphys, Tsongas Arena, Lowell MA, 3-15-2008

UPDATE: You're probably looking for the 7-10-08 show at the baseball park, those pics are over here

[music | D.R.I - In the Pit]
[music | Pete Seeger - Which Side Are You On]
[music | Dropkick Murphys - Dirty Glass]
[music | The Bruisers - These Two Boots of Mine]

We were very lucky to get these tickets. I guess they just moved the venue to the Tsongas on Thursday and opened up a huge block of tickets. We'd tried to hit the St. Patricks day shows a year or two ago, but they sold too fast. This time I was worried we'd have to be in seats, in a hockey arena, and I just wouldn't have bothered. As it was, we were right up front and got to see a fucking brilliant show.

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New York Dolls @ The Paradise

[music | Jim Carroll - People Who Died

Whee I got to see David Johansen and I got the photos to prove it. What an awesome show. The audience didn't move around much at all, and those that did were dragged out by their throats, so that sucked, but it was good to get out, hang with my friend, drink some beers and see the Dolls. Highlights were obviously singles (Trash, Personality Crisis, Looking for a Kiss, Frankenstein - in that order). They also did a cover of Piece of My Heart, which rocked. Here are some of the not-that-shitty pics I took, more are at the Flickr set. I wish I hadn't been buried in the crowd, but the Dise was packed, I didn't want to ditch my friend and assert myself to the front, and the balcony was pretty much out of the question. 90% of the pics I took sucked, but some survived, unfortunately, none of the rest of the band survived (as in reality pretty much). I was supposed to meet one of my work friends, but that wasn't happening. Hopefully she got in since the show was sold out by the time I showed up, which thanks to my sucky weekend karma and our general slowness, meant I missed Opening Band.

UPDATE: Oh yeah, and as I was telling Sean. Scrooged is provably full of shit. No way is anyone getting in a cab driven by that guy.

Pics Inside

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The Pigeon - R.I.P

I am no longer a default bird owner.

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AFC Champion New England Patriots

[music | Ministry - Isle of Man (Version 2)

Once again, the Pats go to the Superbowl. Here are some photos from the game. My camera came with 2 sets of dead batteries, and when they die, it tends to have focusing/speed/writing-to-memory problems, but here are some that didn't come out looking like complete ass.

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by Dr. Radut