Review: Brian Jonestown Massacre, Lucid Lynx at the Paradise in Boston, MA 9-09-2017

Sign Brian Jonestown Massacre

I bought a ticket for this show the second they went on sale, so needless to say, it’s been a long wait, but the night has finally arrived! I decided to drive to the Paradise, since the last time the Brian Jonestown Massacre played here, it was over 3 hours and I ended up missing the train, which in turn became a pricey Uber ride back to Alewife, but soo worth it! After circling the area for a while to find a parking spot, I managed to get almost the same exact space that I had only a few days earlier when I saw Warpaint. It was about a 15-20 minute to walk to the Paradise. There was a very short line to get in and there weren’t that many people yet. I started the night with a Harpoon Wannamango, which was ok, but I expected a better flavor since it seemed a lot of people like this beer. I waited for openers Lucid Lynx to go on.

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Lucid Lynx

Lucid Lynx are a trio that met at Berklee and play psychedelic music. I had never heard of them until this show and was very pleasantly surprised. they played about 40 minutes of pure mellow psychedelic music that was just trippy enough without venturing into drone territory. I was really digging this band.

In between sets, I noticed that none of the usual people I see at these types of shows was around. It also seemed to be more of an older crowd this time around too. I ordered a Harpoon UFO White, my old standby and tried to find a good spot for Brian Jonestown Massacre.

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Brian Jonestown Massacre

As Anton Newcombe and the rest of The Brian Jonestown Massacre came to the stage, the crowd went nuts! This was the band’s last show of 2017, so you knew it was going to be a good one. Starting out with “Groove” and “Geezers” with the fired up audience getting involved by yelling the “woo!” part during “Who”, it seemed like everyone was enjoying themselves.

Brian Jonestown Massacre Anton outside

Although I was pretty tired by the end of this almost 2 1/2 hour set, it’s always good to see the Brian Jonestown Massacre live. After the show, Anton Newcombe was taking pictures with a few fans outside of the Paradise, which was pretty cool. It seemed like the only thing really open was McDonalds, so I ordered some food and walked back to my car and was home pretty fast.

Review: The Brian Jonestown Massacre, The Veldt at The Paradise in Boston, MA 5-7-2016

Sign

Since I was unable to see the Brian Jonestown Massacre at the cancelled Levitation 2016, I was hoping to see them locally here in Boston, but didn’t order a ticket in time and the show was sold out. Through a pretty cool set of circumstances, I was able to go after all and I appreciate that more than anything!

After a very fast ride on the Red Line to Park Street, then a change to a very slow ride on the Green Line, I finally got to The Paradise. As I walked in, North Carolina’s The Veldt had just started playing. I ordered a Hoptical Illusion beer and tried to find a spot to see the band.

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The Veldt

It was kind of hard to see 90’s soul shoegazers, The Veldt, who were opening three of the East Coast shows on this tour, and not just because of the massive crowd around the stage, but because the stage was really dark. This was a big difference from seeing them in Austin where there were all kinds of swirly visuals being projected onto the band. One thing was for sure, the sound was much cleaner and louder than when I saw them last week at Barracuda. The first half of their set seemed to consist more of their shoegaze sound and switched to a more soulful sound for the second half. I have really enjoyed seeing The Veldt twice in two weeks and hope they stick around for a while and continue to tour.

After their set, I went outside to get some air and ended up randomly chatting with a really cool couple from RI. Then in a repeat from last week in Austin, I saw Tayler from Magic Shoppe and we chatted for a bit. I have to say, the psych scene is one of the friendliest (and yes, even in the notoriously very unfriendly Boston). I went back inside and ordered another Hoptical Illusion, while waiting for The Brian Jonestown Massacre to go on.

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Brian Jonestown Massacre

The Brian Jonestown Massacre came out to very loud cheers and applause from a sold out crowd that reached across all age ranges. I’m sure by now everyone knows about the Dig! documentary and the band’s past (and for some reason, if you don’t, I highly recommend see it!). From the very first song, BJM frontman Anton Newcombe held the audiences attention for a nearly 3 hour show that didn’t fixate on any one era of the band’s music. They played an incredible mix of older songs like “Geezer” and my personal favorite “Open Heart Surgery” to some newer stuff, some of which hasn’t been released yet. The crowd sang along with “Who?”, seemingly having fun yelling “whoooo” every time that part of the song came up.

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Evan Dando

They even had Evan Dando of The Lemonheads come out and play a mini set, which was something Newcombe teased earlier. After Dando left the stage, the band came back out and kept playing as the night got later and later. The crowd thinned out a little bit, but by a lot less than you would normally see at a show. This was probably due to the fact that the show went until almost 1am, long after the T stops running, but nobody wanted to miss any part of it. They could have played till 5am for all I care because it was incredible and worth missing the last train! They ended the night with an awesome, high energy jam that fired up the crowd.

I didn’t even care that I had missed the last train (thanks MBTA for cutting late night service), because this night was soo worth it! After wandering down Comm Ave. for a bit to find some food, I ended up at Otto Pizza, where I got a couple of slices to go. I requested an Uber to get me back to my car at Alewife and made my way home. This was an absolutely amazing night of music and will probably go down as one of my favorite shows of the year.

Concert Review: KMFDM at The Paradise in Boston 3-20-2013

KMFDM - The Paradise sign

I got a late start for what is usually a pretty long ride on the T. Red line to Green line and back at the end of the night (before it stops running ), but for some reason, tonight, it went by pretty fast. I got to the Paradise, bought a ticket at the door (where I also noticed several people buying earplugs) and made my way to the bar for a much needed Harpoon IPA.

The first thing I noticed was that a lot of people were wearing black leather trenchcoats, had long hair, and/or were gothed out at this show. Was I in the Matrix? I thought the industrial “look” died out in the 90’s (and yeah, I went through that phase in the early 90’s) but apparently not. Maybe people are getting ready for Man Ray to reopen soon.

I managed to catch the last 5 songs of Legion Within‘s set. They weren’t bad, and a good portion of the crowd seemed to like them, but I just wasn’t really into it. The lead singer seemed really nice and was chatting with people at the merch table though. Also, I was kind of surprised to find out they were from Seattle, as this isn’t the kind of music usually associated with that city. It was back to the bar for a Harpoon UFO and then to find a good spot to watch KMFDM.

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KMFDM took the stage to chants of “KMFDM sucks!” and went right into “D.I.Y.“. They also played “Kunst“, which is my favorite song off of the new album of the same name. It was a pretty straightfoward set, with very few breaks between songs. As expected, the crowd was really into every song. The band came out for 2 encores. They started to play “Sucks” but went into another song. The night ended with “A Drug Against War” which had the crowd fired up.

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It was a really fun show and I was glad to see KMFDM again. That being said, they put on a much better show when I saw them at Lupos in Providence 10 years ago for the WWIII tour, that included screens with visuals behind them and a lot, I mean a LOT of strobe lights (where they had warnings at the door about not coming in if you’re prone to epileptic siezures from strobe lights). It would have been cool to get a couple of long desired KMFDM t-shirts, but they didn’t have any left in my size, unless I was a small (not happening) or a 2xl or larger (seriously???). Perhaps I’ll have better luck the next time they come through Boston.

Concert Review: The Jesus and Mary Chain at The Paradise in Boston 9-11-12

JAMC Sign at The Paradise

I don’t know why I put myself through the horror of going to shows at The Paradise. It’s a great venue (except for those poles!), but having to take the red line and switch to the green line is soo inconvenient and a huge pain in the ass for those of us who come from the ‘burbs. But I guess it’s still easier than trying to find parking in that area, which is practically impossible. Perhaps, the green line is the lesser of 2 evils.

I arrived at the Paradise much later than planned (and missed The Vandelles, who I will try to see at Deep Heaven Now 6 in Somerville next month), where I met up with a couple of friends, one of which had my ticket. As we made our way in, and went for the bar, where they grabbed some ‘Gansetts and I got a Harpoon Summer Ale. We caught the last few songs of Psychic Paramount, who were playing noisy and droning music, which most people didn’t really seem to be into, myself included, which was weird because I usually like that kind of music.

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The Jesus and Mary Chain, who are from Glasgow, were on next. With the exception of a few shows here and there, this was their first real tour in about 15 years. I went to the first of two nights that they were playing in Boston. I’m not sure how the second night went, but I hope it was better than this one.

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It was a really, really loud show, with lots of squealing and feedback driven guitars for about an hour and then that was that. Seriously. An hour and it was over, although they are notorious for their short live shows. The band even had to restart songs a couple of times because at least once, singer Jim Reid stopped the band because he thought they were playing in the wrong key, amongst other issues.

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There was an unusually large amount of hipsters for this kind of show, including several who tried to push their way in front of me and my friends, but we denied them as it was crowded enough where we were. Also, what was with people throwing their beer cups at the stage?

The band came back out to play a couple of songs for the encore, which got most of the crowd dancing around. Overall it was not an entirely bad show, and definitely not the worst I’ve ever seen, but the word “meh” pretty much sums up the disappointment of this night.

Review: The Dismemberment Plan at The Paradise Boston

The Dismemberment Plan at The Paradise
The Dismemberment Plan at The Paradise

Because of the huge amount of snow piled up in Boston, as well as the ever elusive parking spot anywhere near the Paradise, I decided to take the T into the city. The downside of relying on the T to get to a show in Boston is that it doesn’t run late enough, but more on that later. I had missed the first band, Certainly Sir, but arrived before The Forms went on stage.

The first thing I noticed was the huge amount of plaid shirts, then I noticed that pretty much everyone had a beard, something that singer Travis Morrison would acknowledged during the Dismemberment Plan’s set. At this point, I cursed my inability to grow a decent beard while feeling like an outcast. Next, almost all of these bearded, flannel wearing people were drinking PBR’s (I believe the “B” in PBR should stand for “beard”, because you can’t have one without the other). I’m getting off track, this isn’t a review of hipsters.

The Forms
The Forms

The Forms which consisted of two people, went on stage. They played dance music but I just couldn’t get into it. Sort of reminded me of Javelin but different. Something seemed to be missing but I just can’t place it. I didn’t notice too many people dancing though, more of just a light sway. This was kind of disappointing since I saw a lot of posts and tweets saying not to miss these guys.

The Dismemberment Plan
The Dismemberment Plan

The Dismemberment Plan, playing their first show in Boston since 2003, walked onstage to loud cheers from the sold out crowd. The band looked really happy to be playing together again, which is usually a pretty rare thing. It’s great when a band is really enjoying themselves and looking like they are having a lot of fun! I don’t think singer Travis Morrison stopped smiling for the entire show!

The Dismemberment Plan - Travis

They started out with “The Face of the Earth” and went into a “A Life of Possibilities“. I have to say, it was pretty good setlist, which included my favorite song “The First Anniversary of Your Last Phone Call“.

I left during “Ellen and Ben” to make sure I could get back home. So, I was pretty bummed to miss “Ice of Boston“, because it would have been amazing to get up on the stage with them during it! Hopefully, the band will stay together and do another tour. Judging by the good time had by everyone, I wouldn’t be surprised if they did.

The Dismemberment Plan

The Dismemberment Plan

The Dismemberment Plan

Overall, it was a very fun night with a band that I love and hope to see again in the near future. My only regret was taking the T there, which made me miss what could have been an even more amazing experience.

Concert Review: CKY at The Paradise Boston

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Chad I. Ginsburg and Deron Miller of CKY

CKY is one of my favorite bands ever. As proof, one only needs to look at my Last.fm most listened to charts. I was excited to find out they were coming to Boston and even though I was exhausted, I forced myself to go, but missed all of the opening bands. For once, I was ok with that (nothing against those bands, but a nap was a little more important at that point).

We got there a little later than I wanted to, thanks to excellent detour signage in Boston (insert sarcasm tag here) and walked in during “Flesh Into Gear“, which I was told was maybe the 2nd or 3rd song, so it was still early…whew! This was the first show I’ve been at The Paradise since they remodeled and moved the stage away from that infamous view-obstructing pole. I like the new layout, which has the advantage of making it easier to get to the bars as well.

Chad I. Ginsburg
Chad I. Ginsburg

I expected there to be a huge crowd, but it was fairly small considering the following that the band has, as well as it being an all ages show. The band interacted with the crowd all night, even asking what songs people wanted to hear. A few times during the show, they would put on some crappy dance music like the Backstreet Boys or Justin Bieber and start dancing around the stage and mocking the songs. At one point there were problems with Chad’s guitar and he seemed to be pretty pissed off about it. They ended up killing time while someone fixed it, by playing more dance pop songs. Chad was getting pretty pissed off, yelling at their roadies, which was pretty entertaining.

The set consisted almost entirely of songs from before the Carver City album (possibly because there is more synthesizer on that album than the other ones?). Some of the songs they played were “96 Quite Bitter Beings”, “Sara’s Mask”, “Disengage the Simulator”, “Knee Deep”, “Plastic Plan”, and “Close Yet Far”. I was kind of disappointed not to hear “A #1 Roller Rager” since that is my favorite track off of Carver City, but I was pretty happy with the songs they played. In between songs, the crowd was loudly chanting “CKY! CKY!”.

Overall, I was glad to finally have the chance to see one of my favorite bands live. It was a really fun night and I will definitely be there the next time they come through the area, that’s for sure!