Saturday was my birthday and as such it may have been the busiest birthday I have had in a long time, so busy that I decided to split my posts on it into two. I got the chance to go see a great show and go to the Arizona State Fair. I'll post on the Fair Tuesday, but I thought that the concert alone deserved its own post.
My favorite band is Weezer. I love Rancid, I love Social Distortion, I love a lot of bands, but Weezer is straight up my favorite. To have the chance to see my favorite band, on my birthday, with dead center row 6 seats was unbelievable. I had never seen Weezer before, and when I heard they were playing at the Coliseum, I knew I had to go and that I needed some sweet seats. I went with my good friend Stephanie who totally enjoyed the show, though maybe not as much as me.
The concert started at 6 so we got the the venue about 5:45. We got in with no wait and found that there were opening acts. You see, according to all the websites I had visited and checked out for info on the tour, the other bands were not on this bill. But there they were. Tokyo Police Club started it off, but we missed the entirety of their set. We spent so much time trying to navigate the pitch black staircase to the floor that I actually had to carry Stef down the last flight. It was fucking dark!
We grabbed out seats and settled in for the next band, Angels and Airwaves. Fronted by Tom DeLong of Blink 182 fame, they had a really solid set. Stef was really into them having never heard of them before and not realizing that Tom of Blink was the lead singer (of which she was a huge fan). I had heard a few songs on the radio but was more preferable to the other members of Blink's band, Plus 44. That being said they were a good opening act and really got the crowd prepped. I really like some of the cool lighting effects that they did, using palm based lights and laser beam goggles to create a sort of mini light show during the song.
When Weezer came out they blew the doors off the place. Dressed in matching white jump suits against a very plain white tarped backdrop, they kicked off with my favorite song, My Name is Jonas. Then they followed it up with consecutive hit after consecutive hit. I had a small wish list of songs going in that I was hoping to hear, Jonas of course, but also Perfect Situation of their previous album Make Believe, The Greatest Man That Ever Lived off their current album Red, and if I was really lucky, El Scortcho off of Pinkerton. Weezer did not disappoint, they played it all. Even digging out a song I didn't think they would play in Susanne off the Mallrats soundtrack.
There were so many things that impressed me about the band. Each member of the four man band got a moment in the spotlight during the opening few songs. The drummer did vocals to Jonas, the lead guitarist and bass player sang on the songs and Rivers Cuomo did Pink Triangle off of their album Pinkerton. After each band member took center stage, they dumped the Clockwork Orange white jumpsuits and shed down to some red jumpsuits, then they pulled the tarp to reveal the backdrop, a huge light board from the floor to the ceiling and kicked it into high gear with Say It Aint' So.
There were several moments in the concert that were extraordinary. One was when Rivers rode on a guys back through the crowd during El Scortcho playing the guitar. High fiving and smiling, he looked to be genuinely enjoying himself.
Another was the hootenanny jam they performed for their FIRST encore. They invited like 35 people up onto the stage, all of whom had their own instruments, and did a huge ensemble jam session covering Island in the Sun and Beverly Hills. It sounded really great, a combination of guitars, drums, horns, flutes, trumpets, even a didgeridoo! It was incredible!
The next was the two great covers they played. Time from Pink Floyd I think caught everyone off guard but they nailed it and I am not a Pink Floyd kind of guy. The second was during their SECOND encore. They left after the jam session with the musicians and a grip came out with a little red record player. He hooked it up and put on Weezers new album to play their song Heart Songs. Its an ode to all the bands that influenced them over the course of their life, from Eddie Rabbit in the 1970's to Nirvana in the 90's. Just as the lyric came to Nirvana, the band came on stage and kicked the record player over and busted into a killer cover of Sliver (Grandma Take me Home) by Nirvana. It was amazing. I was a little disappointed to see so many people not know the lyrics (or maybe even the song) to Sliver, but I loved it.
It was incredible to listen to so many people sing along with the music. I have never been to a concert where I knew the lyrics to every song they played, and sang along with every note. Even bands like Rancid played a few that I didn't know, but Weezer torched everything. The more I reflect on it, the more I wish I could go again. They could have ended after the first 5 songs and I would have been content. The fact that they played for almost 2 hours...well it was incredible.
After Nirvana they closed the show with Buddy Holly and the whole crowd was still singing along. It was maybe the most fun I have ever got to spend at a show. Getting to go with Stephanie was just icing on the cake. I may not know exactly where I stand, but I felt very close to her during the show and the rest of the night. It was all I could have asked for in a birthday, and the night had just begun.
End of Line.