Eric's Show Journal - posted on September 8, 2007 by

Show Journal 2007-09-08

It’s a day later and I’m still not sure what to think of our MusicFestNW show. Kelly’s Olympian was a really cool place, the sound was good and all the staffers were very nice. All the bands on our showcase were really good as well, which is always a huge plus. Most of the bands leaned towards the indie rock side of things. By indie rock I mean good musicians, meaningful songs and generally hip looking people. In other words, pretty much nothing like us. They were all very good (especially the first band) but we stuck out like a sore thumb. As soon as we set up there we noticed a quick change in the attendance. I guess three large skulls on the amps is a turnoff for some people. Appearances or not I can’t say I blame some people for bailing as our setup was a bit problematic. The band before us took a really long time to unload so we were already about fifteen minutes behind. We got up there, got tuned and began sound checking. Somewhere in there Justin’s tuner decided that tonight was the night it was going to stop working (despite having worked 3 days prior) and that pretty much threw him into a panic. He hit things, slammed his guitar on the stage and cursed repeatedly. I kept thinking we were selected to play from hundreds of applications to represent the best of the NW and here we were standing around unable to even sound check properly. By 12:15 Justin was tuned, checked and we finally started with ‘Radio’. Within the two minutes it takes to perform the song Justin was out of tune, I was out of tune, Dustin’s kick pedal had come loose and Dave couldn’t hear the monitors. I think the subsequent pause was longer than the song we had just played. The next song started off promising enough but afterwards it too was met by another pause of indeterminable length filled with guitar tuning and drum set adjusting. By about 12:30 we’re three songs in and we’ve finally gotten our shit together and have started playing well. Only problem is we’re supposed to be done in 10 minutes. We blasted through the songs as fast as we could and finally picked up some momentum. So how was the crowd? There were more people than we expected but they were all a good 20 feet back from the stage leaving a large and empty floor right in front of us. Somewhere in there the “dancing” began. In the beginning the “dancing” was limited to one rather preppy-ish looking guy with flip flops and a collared knit shirt head banging and air guitaring by himself in our previously established “no standing zone”. There was a moment where I was honestly wondering if he was possibly retarded and that I would go to hell for making fun of him? I quickly deducted that he was just drunk. Eventually a few other people joined in up front and started moving around (including my neighbor of all people) and everyone seemed to be having a pretty good time. We finally looked and sounded like a real band. All good things must come to an end and during one of the last few songs one of the revelers fell down and twisted his knee. He laid there on the liquid covered floor of Kelly’s for half a song while a circle of people formed around him. They moved him out and the “no standing zone” quickly returned to it’s former size. It’s only inhabitant was one drunken guy who kept slamming into bystanders and those at tables, trying to grab them and get them to move up front with him. Charming. And that was it. Twenty five minutes had passed and it ended just as awkwardly as it began. For the average observer I guess the show wasn’t that bad overall but at a showcase like this I always hope a little more. If any of that stuff went down at a “normal” bar show (equipment failure, drunk guy dancing, retarded air guitarist, etc) I probably wouldn’t have cared. Tonight it was all a little disappointing. Maybe my expectations are just too high for such an event? Anyway, we got off stage quickly and Amadan closed the night very nicely. We watched a few songs, then watched a few fights and finally went home for a long night of sleep. Thanks to those who stuck around and I hope this doesn’t taint your recollection of our show!