Monday, August 10, 2009

Lollapalooza 2009 - Day 2.1 - The Raveonettes at the Empty Bottle

As with last year, the 10 hours of baking in the sun and seeing a constant stream of bands (16 by my count) was once again not enough for me, I decided to head out to one of the local clubs for one of the official Lolla aftershows going on around the city.

Longtime readers might remember that I decided to do the same thing last year at the Double Door, but the results were not so great. I braved it again this year in the hopes that things would run alot smoother, and that I might actually be able to see a headliner play before 1 AM.

I went to go and see Living Things again at the Empty Bottle, as they were opening for another band I love, the Raveonettes, at the Empty Bottle. It took me a little while to get back to my car from the L that I took, then only about another 15 minutes or so to get to the venue from where I parked. The fun part was then driving all around that neighborhood for a good 10 minutes until I could find a good place to park about a mile away. Good times.

I got into the venue around 11, and Living Things were already on. I thought the show was supposed to start at 11, so I wasn't too worried about it. However, it turned out that they had been on since around 10:30, so I missed almost all of their set and only got to see 3 songs. It was okay, since it was 3 songs I hadn't seen at their set at Lolla, including a stomping "I Owe," which had singer Lillian Berlin planted in the audience, passing around the mic to have some help belting out the song's chorus.

Thankfully for me and my 35 year old knees and feet, the Raveonettes set up pretty quickly after that. The good news also was that the Raveonettes' record label were videotaping their performance to put out there somehow when their new album comes out later this year. I was standing right next to one of the cameramen, so it'll be just like watching the show from my perspective in some parts.

I've been a fan of the Raveonettes ever since they first broke through here in the US in 2003. Their a Danish band, and the best way to describe their sound is to take a guy/girl group from the 1950's, and have them sing with a band recreating the massive wall-of-guitar sound made by bands like Jesus & Mary Chain in the 1980's and 90's. And how can you not love any band who intentionally wrote every song on their debut album in the same key?

The band is essentially only guitarist/singer Sune Rose Wagner and guitarist/co-lead singer/goddess Sharin Foo (who bumped into me while she was walking to the backstage area, which I have to assume means she is in love with me), and they vary who they have backing them tour to tour. This time around, they did have a percussionist and bass player, which they haven't had in a couple of years.

The band started off with some of their better album tracks, and quickly moved into some brand new material, which they said was being played for the first time anywhere. The songs didn't stray far from their formula at all, which is fine since they do it so well.

They did play most of their best songs, including "Attack of the Ghost Rider," "Aly, Walk With Me" and "Great Love Sound," so it was a very special treat for the fans not just for the new material, but to get to hear the best of their old stuff as well.

They pretty much finished within an hour, which pretty much meant that was the set they'd be playing the next day at Lolla, so it was a good sneak peek of what to expect out in the blazing sun the next day. And the good news is that by 1:15, the show was over and I was on my way home to finally get off my feet, and rest up for one more day at Lollapalooza.

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