June 20, 2011


Been busy!

My review of Friday night's My Morning Jacket show for Rolling Stone dot com. Last time I saw them was in like 1998 (99?) at Schubas and I do not remember it but I think it was their second Chicago show and there maybe 40 people there? They are way more popular now. I wish I could have written a review of just the people around me. The guys behind me, Fitched out drunk bros havin' the time of their life, huge fans. I was relying on them to provide song titles I couldn't remember, but stopped doing so once they edged towards wasted. They spilled beer down my back but I didn't anything, it was out of exuberance. I was across from a pre-teen or barely teen couple, braces both, 13ish, tops 14. They did not know the songs and I have a feeling maybe they did not even like the band that much they just went because it was a concert. I wonder how or even why they got such good seats (7th row, center). The boy held the girl in traditional concert couple backrub embrace until like, an hour in, they were clearly exhausted by standing and swaying. Their kidness started kicking in and the date vibe receded and they sat; little did they know that MMJ was playing, per usj, a two and a half hour set. At one point I looked over the boy had his head on the girls shoulder, trying to act casual even though he clearly was new to such intimate contact with a girl. She was expressionless, ready fall asleep, staring in the backs of the waaassted adults in front of them. I bet Jim James, thick and hirsute in his tiny trenchcoat, yeti boots and Chico's rack sale scarf is not exactly their idea of a rock star. I bet watching someone play pedal steel when yr thirteen makes you feeling like killing yourself. The show, towards the end was super scary. I could not look up or around. Chicago is notoriously a drunk town, and MMJ fans were shitfaced as far as I could see (illuminated by seizure lights and LED glow) and JUMPING, clawing at their stomachs (air guitar gone wild), teetering, grabbing and shaking their friends--all along the super low, knee height balcony. The Auditorium theatre is nearly 120 years old and was built for little people who did not yet have vitamins, and certainly for drunk people freaking out. I was positive someone was going to pitch forward and fall from their third story boxseat.

I reviewed the new Key Losers, Purple and Green, Ice Age, The Men, White Rainbow mixtape and Nu Sensae/White Lung split in last week's Reader. Key Losers is my second favorite record of the year. The Men I liked more than you can tell from what I wrote, but I am feeling really done with the nineties --esp. with the revisionist nineties being sold back to me culturally. Not that I am more desiring of an accurate nineties revival (I mean yes, I will take nouveau grunge over Aerosmith, Korn, when everything went trip-hop, the dawn of remix albums, Paw, Candlebox) but it's just... lifeless. I am trying to move forward with my ironic embrace of the recent past, so I am thinking I might get super into Papa Roach. Be ahead of the curve.

Here's a bit of straight reporting I did about Big Bill Broonzy and his life in Chicago and legacy on the blues and folk scenes that he helped establish. Get obsessed. Do not hold the fact that he's Eric Clapton's main blues inspiration against him.

Posted by jessica hopper at June 20, 2011 09:43 AM | TrackBack