The Editors are back on tour in the USA and as flawless as ever! Their tour support seems to compliment their cause and liven the sold-out crowds with anticipation. I had the pleasure of enjoying the entire show - front to back - and I'm here to tell you ... grab your tickets now!
Hailing from San Diego since 2003, Louis XIV was the opener for the night. I have enjoyed their songs "Air Traffic Control" and "Finding Out True Love Is Blind". I haven't ventured too deep into the sounds of Louis XIV as I feel the vocals of Jason Hill can get a little too rough and disagreeable at times. I really enjoy their brit-pop, retro glam-rock style though - and their confidence was apparent from the moment they stepped onstage. There have been many unfavorable articles put out there regarding the new album 'Slick Dogs & Ponies' (released in January of 2008) and their live show ... but, based on their sexually driven lyrics (and the fact that they are banned from playing in Alabama), I was curious to see which way I would sway on the pass or fail meter. With a performance outshining their recorded content, I will definitely be giving them another shot. The Killers took them out on tour for a reason ... Mark Maigaard was perfect on drums, James Armbrust played an energetic bass, and Jason Hill's vocals were much more adequate live. The only thing that creeped me out was Brian Karscig (guitar, piano) on background vocals ... at times, he has very feminine undertones in his voice. Click here to put your face on Louis XIV's new album cover.
Next up - Canadian band Hot Hot Heat! I love, love, LOOOOVE their song "Dirty Mouth" and I'm a fan of "Outta Heart" as well. Needless to say, I was quite excited to see these guys play live for the first time. Lead singer, Steve Bays was crazy energetic onstage ... but, past that - the performance slowed. Guitarist, Luke Paquin, was definitely the eye candy of the bunch ... but, sadly, none of the other band members stood out. Overall, I felt things ended on a monotone note. I do recommend the Hot Hot Heat album 'Elevator' and I will catch these boys live again as I do really enjoy their indie-rock/dance chemistry.
Headlining the sold-out show was The Editors! If any inch of your body appreciates genuine music, you will take the time to see this band live. I've written about The Editors before - so, I won't bore you with repetition. The sheer passion in each musicians performance is reason enough to treat yourself and every single song is somehow even better as a captivated audience member. I don't know how they do it - but, I'm addicted - and I will continue to push my way through the sold-out crowds to catch a glimpse of Tom Smith (vocals, guitar, piano) rocking out as he crawls on top of his piano. Honestly, they are flawless!
Lastly, I'm hooked on 'Alone - The Home Recordings of Rivers Cuomo'! It's his first solo attempt away from Weezer and it was released sorta under the radar back in December. It includes the original demo for 'Buddy Holly' and also has Rivers' favorite demos starting as far back as from 1992. Most songs are extremely raw and it feels as if you are sitting across the living room from the artist as he shares with you these unfinished treasures.
*by Jen Panczenko, who is boycotting the SuperBowl this year.