Last night Albert Hammond, Jr. kicked off their headlining US tour in San Diego. The show was heavily promoted and a "recommended" by FM 94/9 which ensured plenty of airplay leading up to the show and a near sell-out crowd.
Opening the night was The Mooney Suzuki. A fun classic rock band from New York, the songs are hooky and repetitive and the band made lots of attempts for hand claps from the crowd, but this is Solana Beach, after all, so the head nod is the best you're really gonna get. The show at the Beauty Bar tomorrow should be an entirely different story when they play with lo-fi-fnk. There was one particular song that stood out for me where there was a bit of Elvis Costello to the sound. The rest of the nearly one hour set was fun but being unfamiliar with their material, there were no distinguishing differences for me.
After the set, Andrea and I met up with Brooke outside for a few and then she took us upstairs to the private section reserved for 94/9, so thanks to the station, Hal, Owen, et al for not booting us out. In the other half of the upstairs area, Eddie Vedder's brother was having a party but we couldn't really figure out which guy he was.
My camera wasn't doing so well from this vantage point, so I mazed around from the side of the stage and worked my way across the front area with the "I lost my friend" excuse, which was, in fact, half valid, because Dave was hanging out up there. While I mazed through I got a couple better shots. You can actually tell my progress in getting from one side of the stage to the other.
I was a little surprised by the show. I spent the day listening to the entire album (legally on MySpace) and really enjoying how different is was from the Strokes, but the show, with a full band (5 piece), was a lot more rocking than I expected. That wasn't bad, but I would've liked a couple of the mellower tracks to be played that way live. So as to not piss off all the people I'd just maneuvered in front of, Dave agreed to take more pics and I made my way out the side for a little break. While in the patio, Will, the drummer of The Mooney Suzuki asked for a light. I asked about the Beauty Bar show and if they were not touring with Albert Hammond, but he said that there were just a lot of breaks in between tour stops, so they all play in LA tonight, but tomorrow The Mooney Suzuki will come back to SD and then pick back up on the tour, which they will do throughout the tour until it ends at SXSW. I told him he can expect a good crowd at the Beauty Bar on Wednesday, one that is willing to participate in all the hand clapping they desire.
Back in the show, I made my way back upstairs and watched the rest of the set from the balcony. The set felt short, but with one album and no Strokes songs in the set, that is to be expected for a new artist.
I posted the set list in the other post, but here it is, decoded:
Every One Gets A Star
Old Black Dawning
Call An Ambulance
In My Room (Beach Boys cover?)
Bright Young Thing
Hard To Live In The Moment
There was no encore, presumably because that is so cliché and New York bands are crazy like that...go against what's expected...livin on the edge...yeah! Kidding. But there was no encore, the show was done by about 11:30 and I was outta there because my night was not quite complete...
By the way, special thanks again to Brooke, 94/9, Dave for taking pics, and BlogSanDiego for the tickets.