Welcome Home - Green Day at Shoreline, 9/4/10 - Photo by Green Day Mind
I have just barely come up for air after the last week of Green Day’s North American tour. I unexpectedly went to the Irvine show in LA, then Chula Vista, and finally, the most amazing show of them all, Shoreline, the final show of the tour leg. I also got to attend Oakland’s rogue music festival, Hoodstock, yesterday, and saw my raw lovelies, the Mystic Knights of the Cobra play. It’s been an incredible week!
I’ll post more later as I’ve been keeping notes, but my hangover from the last week is still a bit thick in my brain. No worries, though, if I can remember it, I’ll have a lot to report (of what I can), as usual!
I’m here in Northern California for the next week. I am the luckiest woman in the world and so incredibly happy right now. I hope all is well with you!
Green Day in Holmdel - St. Jimmy - Photo by xGeneralxS
“You know, you spend your fucking money to come to a fucking show and it’s my fucking honor and our privilege to be up here and to give you the best fucking show you’ve ever fucking seen.” –Billie Joe Armstrong
He's a Scream - Green Day at Holmdel - Photo by xGeneralxS
It’s become a personal cliche to me. Almost every Green Day show that I have been fortunate enough to attend during the 21st Century Breakdown tour, turns out to be the “best one yet.” Of course, that’s not quite possible, is it? After all, I didn’t walk away from the kick-ass kick-off show in Camden thinking it was the best show I’d been to. I had a blast, of course, but having worked that day, taken care of people to get to the show, gotten to the show just as it was starting and dealing with dickey boys in the pit, the show was still fun, but the audience (that means me) didn’t give it a 110%, and that is a major factor in a Green Day show. Green Day always give it their all, but I couldn’t put aside the day’s stress and let go. Plus, I could have sworn I was going to faint a few times in the pit. I stuck it out, but missed the 2nd Encore in search of water for fear of never feeling hydrated again in my life.
What Did You Say? - Green Day at Holmdel - xGeneralxS
While each gig’s structure remains the same as well as the setlist most times, each show is a little different and tailored to the venue itself, depending on its size and atmosphere. But a major factor to a Green Day show is the amount of energy that an audience brings with them that fuels this band’s performance. The more energy released by the audience, the more the band soaks it up and throws it back out. I once wrote in a fangirly post titled “Green Day is Different” that because of the massive synergy between Green Day and its fans, each take what they need to create the best experience possible. Oh, and we don’t care if anyone doesn’t like them, haha. It’s a win-win situation, a beautiful give-and-take, particularly when it comes to a live Green Day show.
For two nights, over three days, I traveled to see Green Day perform in Hartford, CT on 8/12 and then again to Holmdel, NJ for their show on 8/14. I walked away both times thinking that it was the best show I’d seen for different reasons, and began thinking, what in the shows made me feel this way?
Jill's Tattoo Needs Two More Signatures! - Photo by GDM
Last July, Green Day hit Hartford’s XL Arena and though I didn’t go to the show, I did read the many-page thread at the Green Day Community regarding the show. The kids who went bonded tightly with the band that night and threw out requests, getting them to do “F.O.D.,” “Dominated Love Slave,” “Only You,” and “Christie Road.” Of course, some of these songs may have been planned by the band, but “F.O.D.” and “DLS” were certainly requested that night. As I read, I became more and more sad that I didn’t make the show. When it was announced that they would head back to Hartford at the Comcast amphitheater, I had no choice but to go. So, I did.
Billie Joe, at the start of a great version of “¡Viva la Gloria!” told us in Hartford that “he had done a lot of tours, that we’ve done a lot of tours, but these last shows in America have been the most fun.” And I have to say, from the shows I’ve been to over this tour, Hartford was the most playful, which is saying a lot, since a Green Day show is always full of playful experiences.
“¡Viva la Gloria!” – Green Day, Comcast Theater, Hartford, NJ – PsypherSCSU
Pharoah Playtime at Hartford - Green Day, August 2010 - Photo by Kimberly Martin
I took the Peter Pan bus up to Hartford and was met at the bus station by a new Green Day acquaintance, Jenne, a lovely person whose 5-year old daughter is also a huge fan of Green Day. Jenne would go on to surprise her daughter with her first show in Mansfield, MA, later in the week. At Hartford’s show, I also met up with Nicole, who was at that first Foxboro Hot Tubs show in New York City. Nicole would surprise her 5-year old son to his first show at Holmdel two days later. Green Day has become a family affair, complete with spitting, cursing, and sometimes, masturbation (a lot less than the American Idiot tour, for sure) and it’s all good! Jenne and I arrived to the venue in plenty of time, and met up with the usual suspects: ToniAnn, Stephanie, Geraldine from Albany (who I had met at MSG1 back in 2009), Shannon, Briana, David, Mary, Rich and Billie De (the couple who helped me onstage during “I Fought the Law” at the FBHT show at Don Hill’s), Luanne and her daughter, Allie (who had traveled from Chicago’s Lollapalooza to attend the shows in Hartford, Holmdel, and Mansfield); and Rory, my soundcheck buddy from MSG2 in 2009. It was fun hanging out with everyone, and when we finally got into the venue, we were raring to go.
Davey Havok, AFI, Holmdel - Photo by xGeneralxS
I hadn’t caught AFI’s gig at Camden, and I don’t know the band’s music well. I enjoyed them more than I thought I would. They added that extra opening spice to the show that I had only encountered seeing from one opening band before them, and that was Prima Donna’s two London appearances at the 02. AFI were engaging onstage, all over the place and had a nice exaggerated style. The more their set moved on, the more they and I got into it.
Mary R's Dad is Happy That She's Onstage! - Green Day, Hartford - Photo by GDM
I started this show uncertain of where to be in the pit. So many people where there that I knew and I wanted to share the show with all of them. I ended up about four or five people from the barrier, and I have to say, there were so many girl fights this night, that it made me laugh. Girls were getting into arguments with each other left and right, though I have no idea why. The pit was a bit rough, but since it was mostly dicky women instead of dicky boys, it was much easier to deal with. Luckily, a really amazing thing happened during one of those “Everyone And Their Mothers On Stage Now” moments that have been happening lately, were the band pulls up a bunch of people and completely covers the stage in fan bodies. Mary R. got pulled onstage and I made a move that I will never regret: I headed straight for her spot at the barrier and spent the rest of the evening hanging out with David and G.L.O.R.I.A.!, who had sang “Longview” at Hartford last year. Mary R. made it back to her spot (a little bit more cuddly with her beau, David by this time), and I was in the spot that I love for the rest of the night: right under Mike (uh…) with a great view of Tre as well, and so close that it was great to be able to play directly with them. Mike threw me a pic, and I caught it, WITH ONE HAND, and he… was… impressed. I’m pretty happy to have one. It says “DIRNT XXX.” :wub:
Mike Threw It and Caught It With One Hand! - A Small "Life Complete" Moment
They’ve done “Give Me Novacaine” at Camden, Hartford and Holmdel. I remember hearing this number for the first time at London’s 02 back in October. It was great there, but the sound of the large arena drowned the song out a bit at the beginning of the tune and it was difficult to figure out what was being played until well into the number. The sound at Hartford and Holmdel both had excellent quality (Camden’s bass sound was off, sadly), except for some glitches here and there at Holmdel. It was great hearing Novacaine!
“Give Me Novacaine” – Green Day at Hartford, August 2010 – PyspherSCSU
Hartford was the first time that I had heard “Whatsername,” sung live, and this show as well as the Holmdel show contained two of the best 2nd Encores that I’ve seen. Holmdel, truly beat them all, though. Here’s video to Whatsername, complete with an asshole at the end who wrestles Tre’s drumstick away from someone, but still, it’s a great 2nd Encore nonetheless.
At either Camden or Hartford, I can’t remember now, at a few points, those in the seats started banging their chairs in ecstatic appreciation of what was happening on stage, and the sound roared through the venue. I turned around and just looked at everyone standing up, right there, right in the moment, as the banging cascaded throughout the place and added that bit more fuel to the performance fire from the stage. I love it. Bring the boys your all, and they’ll give it back to you in the same amount and more. This is the main difference (to me), of my perception of the show in Camden and the show in Holmdel. I was able to give it 110% at Hartford, and got that back in spades.
On a serious note, I want to wish Jill (she of the epic Green Day Shenanigans tattoo seen above), a speedy recovery. About 12 hours after the Hartford show, Jill suffered what doctors think is a mild heart attack, was in the hospital for a few days and now has a stent. Jill wasn’t even in the pit that night, but sitting on the lawn. That’s how hard Green Day rocked. Get well soon, Jill, that’s certainly giving your all to God’s favorite band!
GREEN DAY IN HOLMDEL
BJA Hollow Body - Green Day, Holmdel August 2010 - Photo by xGeneralxS
I had been to the PNC Bank Arts Center back in the 1980s and I believe saw Berlin and the Thompson Twins perform. But don’t quote me on that lineup, because I barely remember. I do know that I’ve been there, and I’ve seen it many a time on the way to the Jersey shore. The show was located deep in the middle of Nowhere, New Jersey in Holmdel Township. It’s a great amphitheater venue, built in 1968 of concrete acoustical pillars on the side of a hill, a natural acoustical space and the sound in the venue is amazingly clear. So clear, in fact, that Billie Joe Armstrong’s voice sparkled like polished glass reflecting in the sun. Holmdel brought us another amazing second encore, a soaring and heartfelt rendition of “When It’s Time.” Audience members were so close to the band that many of them were able to take high quality video of the performances, and we are truly lucky to be able to hear them for as long as we can.
“Minority” Solo with a Pretty Hollow Body – BJA at Hartford – YourBestShotMedia
BJA's Hollow Body - Photo by Kimberly Martin
Jill T. and I had been discussing at the Hartford show a guitar that Billie Joe pulled out that we had never seen before, and wondered if it’s one of the new guitars that Green Day tweeted about shopping for during their stop in Buffalo a few weeks ago. Billie Joe played a long solo on it during “Minority” on both nights and Kimberly caught a snippet of it being played during “American Idiot.” I asked one of the mods at the GDA, Eirik, what he thought, and he had never seen him play it before, thinking that it was possibly one of the studio hollow bodies being used on the road. I have no idea, I just like the sound!
In fact, the sound was so amazing at this show that there were moments where I felt like a multitude of angels were singing all once, starting from Billie Joe onstage and rising up with about 17,000 attendees. At one point, I just stopped dancing, closed my eyes, and listened to the sound bouncing off of the concrete. The sound was so resonate that it made a few occasions of feedback (especially during “Jesus of Suburbia”) noticeably stand out during the night. No matter, though, the night climaxed with that same version of JOS filling the space with a rousing, fist-pumping, adrenaline rush.
Mr. Lovely - Green Day at Holmdel, August 2010 - Photo by xGeneralxS
SAVE ME! - Green Day at Hartford - Photo by xGeneralXs
I think I annoyed a few people around me during the show. I came with Dawn, Nicole, and Michael. Our seats were in the 300 section of the venue, which made me really sad at first because I felt trapped in the upper level, when everyone else was down below in the 100 and 200 sections. I ended up standing with Luanne and her daughter Allie, in the aisle way right next to the soundbooth (Billie Joe had announced that everyone could fill up the aisles down below because no one would be sitting during the concert), and we had a great time rocking the aisle. I had so much room to dance that I got a little wacky, and Luanne and I did choreography from American Idiot on Broadway. Dawn mentioned that security had come up near us during the “I Don’t Care” movement of JOS as we were doing the faux 7/11 hand-to-shoulder fight scene. I’m sure everyone around us thought we had lost our bloody minds. To me it was a perfect example of giving that 110% of performance as an audience member, matching the energy given by the band onstage and creating again that synergy of complete connection between band and fan. And man, was it friggin’ fun!
Davey and Billie Joe at Holmdel - Photo by xGeneralxS
Some of the many audible highlights of this night: “Who Wrote Holden Caulfield,” featuring AFI singer, Davey Havoc; the soul-rousing and fist-pumping rendition of “Jesus of Suburbia” [see Youtube below], “Letterbomb” [VIDEO LINK HERE] and one of the most epic “Longview’s” ever, complete with an American Sign Language teacher who was so good that she got a guitar at the end instead of the singer. [See Youtube below]. Oops.
“Longview” – Green Day, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, NJ – xGeneralxS
“Jesus of Suburbia” – Green Day, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel – SHUTxChristinaaxUP
When It’s time / Wake Me Up When September Ends / Time of Your Life – Green Day, PNC Bank Arts Center, Holmdel, NJ – RockConcertNo1Fan
Billie Joe - Green Day at Holmdel - Photo by xGeneralxS
As we were stumbling to our cars back to the city after the show, I heard Green Day’s music pouring loudly out of the back of a pickup truck where three burly New Jersey men were tailgating in the parking lot. I really wish that I had been of the mind to grab my iPhone to take a video when I heard the first notes of “Horseshoes and Handgrenades” blasting out, but I had broken my glasses earlier in the night, and I wasn’t thinking straight. In a recent post, I mentioned that I would love to hear “Horseshoes and Handgrenades” at least once on this tour, along with “Peacemaker” and a couple of others from 21st Century Breakdown. I found myself walking brusquely over to where the three dudes were cleaning up their area a bit and I asked if they had been to the show that night. They said yes and then I asked, “Hey, wouldn’t you love to hear this song, ‘Horseshoes and Handgrenades’ played live?” One of the fellows bellowed, “Yea, I have never understood why it wasn’t a single! It shoulda been a single!” and I concurred. There’s been talk from folks in the pit lately that they have seen lyrics to “Peacemaker” taped at Billie Joe’s feet for the last few nights, but it hasn’t happened yet. The anticipation isn’t killing me, but I am pretty excited for the possibilities!
My next tour stop is Montreal! See you French-Canadian Idiots there!
For a little detour on the Homecoming road, the vivacious Zoe posted a link to a cover of Green Day’s “The Grouch” on Facebook and I was pretty floored when I listened to it, and subsequently, a few more of Team Perfect’s Green Day covers as well.
“WHAT IS TEAM PERFECT? It’s the name Devonte Hynes (of ‘Lightspeed Champion’) and Florence Welch (of ‘Florence and the Machine’) gave themselves when they performed together. These recordings are from their cover of Green Day’s “Nimrod” album. They were recorded back in 2007 on Devonte’s laptop; so please do not complain about the quality — this is the highest quality version out there.”
You can read more about Devonte Hynes, also known as Lightspeed Champion, at his website. The British Hynes has written music for performers such as The Chemical Brothers, Florence and the Machine, and Diana Vickers. He also has his own solo career, releasing Falling Off The Lavender Bridge in 2008 and his 2010 album, Life is Sweet, Nice to Meet You, along with a host of other material he’s done as well as these underground Green Day covers. He’s also a classical performer but throat surgery interrupted a two-year tour in 2008. He’s a graphic artist and seems to be an out-there character. He teamed up with Florence Welch of the Machine to record covers from Nimrod for female voice and acoustic guitar.
All of the songs were recorded on a laptop and are raw. It’s pretty awesome to hear “Platypus (I Hate You)” and “The Grouch” while Welch sings and Hynes attacks the acoustic guitar behind the lyrics. “Platypus’s” curse words sound dangerous and dainty coming from a woman, but the meaning comes down to the same, I just hate you and “The Grouch” reminds us that men and women alike can suffer a bad, horrible, terrible no good life, so fuck you very much, but sweetly. Not only that, but they also highlight Billie Joe’s lyrical and Green Day’s musical penmanship as the stripped-down songs allow a different exploration of the musical complexities of Nimrod. As Hynes says at the end of “Playtpus (I Hate You),” RROOCCKK!
Team Perfect Does “Platypus (I Hate You)”
Team Perfect Does “The Grouch”
Check out the other covers such as “Redundant,” “Worry Rock,” “Nice Guys Finish Last,” “Hitchin’ A Ride,” and “All The Time” that were also recorded in 2007. It’s a bit difficult to track down a place to purchase the songs, but do catch all of them and other covers by Team Perfect at the Youtube site as well as Hynes’ other works. You hardcore Green Day collectors out there may have already heard these cause you’re so cool, but for those of us who haven’t, enjoy!
I mentioned also that the Razorbax were in the running for Europe’s “Surfaced Unsigned” contest and the regional semi-final would be coming up on July 31st. I’m happy to report that the semi-finals happened and the Razorbax won the chance to perform at the Midlands Regional Finals! Congrats, guys! The show will be happening at the 02 Academy in Birmingham [LINK HERE] on 29 August, a Sunday. The venue holds 2,000 and the Razorbax perform between 11PM and Midnight. They have 100 tickets to sell, so please join them at their Facebook page for more information.
The Razorbax will also release their single, “A Better Place,” this coming Tuesday, August 3rd. The song is really great and all of the proceeds go to benefit the Autism Trust. You can hear the song below and use the links in the UPDATE above to buy this excellent debut album!
All the best! Break a leg!
UPDATE: You can follow both the Razorbax and their UK independent, unsigned bands promotion company, Nova-Caine, on Twitter! Also, word on the street is that the Razorbax song, “Wake Up! Wake Up!” was played on an L.A. radio station this past weekend! Woot! Great news! You can buy digital downloads of the Razorbax album, Something to Believe In on iTunes, Amazon UK and ReverbNation.
Prima Donna at the Bowery Electric with Dirty Shames and The Threads, 7/25/2010
Prima Donna and Star Fucking Hipsters at Maxwell's, 07/26/2010
Sorry I had to take a bit of a break, but work got in the way. I have my work done for the most part now and I’m happy to say that Green Day’s North American tour is just around the corner coming up in 12 days in Camden, NJ and I’ll be there! Woot!
In the meantime, to hold all of you New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania Lushies over until Camden, this weekend brings our favorite Glam band, Prima Donna, to the area! Double woot!
At the end of June, I headed off to the Bay Area in order to take care of some business which just happened to coincide with a four-night mini-tour of Prima Donna and the Mystic Knights of the Cobra. I caught two of the four gigs, in Santa Cruz at the Blue Lagoon and Oakland at the Uptown. I had a great time dancing with the bands and I also had a blast seeing for the first time a “Zombie Vomit” (uh… what?) band called Culo A Boca (you’ll have to Google that name to find out what it means). One of their songs is “2 Girls 1 Cup,” but you’ll have to Google that also to find out where that title comes from, if you dare). (Though I was told that “1 Guy, 1 Cup,” which I haven’t dared to Google, is grosser…)
I’m very excited about the Maxwell’s show as “Star Fucking Hipsters” (who I’ve seen twice in NYC) will be performing before they head off to their European tour. The dichotomy between SFH and Prima Donna will be something to see! A big shoutout to Mike Chickenman for setting up the show.
I’ll be at the Bowery Electric and Maxwell’s with my dancing shoes on, so beware! See all of you Area Lushies there!
Prima Donna and Mystic Knights of the Cobra Merch
Here’s a couple of videos of the Cobras and Prima Donna at the Uptown and Prima Donna’s video, “I Don’t Want You To Love Me”:
Mystic Knights of the Cobra – “Mutafuko’s Revenge” – The Uptown in Oakland, CA
Prima Donna – “Feral Children in Love” – The Uptown in Oakland, CA
Prima Donna – “I Don’t Want You To Love Me” – Official Video
For more local dates in YOUR AREA for Prima Donna, check out their tour page here. The North American tour goes until August 21 and they are off to Europe in September.
Lis Booth’s interview with Frustrators frontman, Jason Chandler, is now online at Punk Globe Magazine and at Lis Booth’s blog here! As I suspected he doesn’t say much about any new Frustrators material (damn you, Chandler! *shakes fist in air*) but you can learn how Jason found himself in the band and read about the few gigs that the Frussies have played.
I have this dream that when I go and see Green Day’s Homecoming show in the Bay area in early September, that the Frustrators will play a gig around then, too, just for shits and giggles. I mentioned this on the Frustrators Facebook page and got the reply, “Dream until your dreams come true,” so I figure that’s a whole lotta dreaming that I have to get cracking at. I am up to the task since I do like to sleep!
Broadway Calls Interview by Lisa "Lis" Booth at Punk Globe Magazine
Lisa also interviews the former Adeline Records band, “Broadway Calls.” The interview is here.
Just an FYI: The third leg of Prima Donna’s and the Mystic Knights of the Cobra gig in San Jose is canceled for tonight. If you can head to Toot’s Bar in Crockett, CA at the last moment, you can catch the bands tonight with Bobby Joe Ebola and the Chicken MacNuggits. It’s going to a party at the hometown bar. Warning: liver damage ahead! I’m flying back to NYC today and will miss the shenanigans. Have a great time if you head up there and see you, East Bay, in September!
The MKOTC and Prima Donna tour will continue tomorrow (6/28 at the 16th Street Cafe) in Sacramento. A second show for Prima Donna in the NYC area was added over the weekend. The band will be at the Bowery Electric on July 25th as originally planned and then again at Maxwell’s Bar in Hoboken, NJ on July 26th. See you there!
Greet, a Lushie Nun Mother from Belgium who attended the Razorbax show was the successful bidder winner. And here’s the baby here:
21st Century Breakdown Vinyl signed by Full Green Day Touring Band for the Punks Play for Autism Benefit, London - Green Day 21st Century Breakdown Tour 2009-2010. Photo by Greet Druyts
Green Day at Wembley Stadium
I tried writing about this show, but frankly, I was a little sad that I couldn’t go, so it was a little hard writing about the show since A) I wasn’t there, and B), well, sadly, I wasn’t there. Sigh. I’ve been a bit whiney about it, too, but hey, it happens, lol. I hear from folks who went that it was great, and really, I believe it.
What I really missed out on was hearing for the first time on Green Day’s 21st Century Breakdown tour, the band singing “Waiting.” Sigh.
“Waiting” – Green Day Wembley Stadium – June 19, 2010
I did watch several clips of this show and read every page of the Wembley thread at the Green Day Community, so I feel in a way that I was there, but it’s all in bits and pieces of lore. Some good stories, too, of long lines at Wembley, what Billie Joe said about leaving Green Day in a coffin, of how Tre sang during the “Shout” part of the night, and hey, Mike grabbed the mic at one point too and kicked his legs higher than Tre!
Green Day Blow Themselves Up at Wembley! What a Show! Photo by Unknown Photographer found by Greet Druyts
I also saw a clip of the pyro that went off during the “Minority” encore, but I saw it only on Facebook and can’t seem to locate it on the Youtubes at the moment. Suffice it to say, at the part where the blowers go off and confetti goes flying through the air, there were fireworks that seem to almost blow the band up! Luckily, they survived and appeared a few days later in Glasgow, and will be playing tomorrow night, 6/23/2010, in Dublin.
With that, I’m off tomorrow to the San Francisco Bay Area! The Mystic Knights of the Cobra and Prima Donna are on a four-night mini-tour, and I’m going to go and dance a bit for two of them! And do some other stuff, too. Later!
This past weekend I missed a bunch of things that were happening in New York and New Jersey. This coming weekend, I’m heading out to the San Francisco Bay Area to see Prima Donna with the Mystic Knights of the Cobra. The Insubordination Fest in Baltimore and the Skatopia Festival in Rutland, Oh are also taking place this weekend as well.
What I Missed Last Weekend
Lucky Seventeen Photography Display - Arts All Night 2010, Lawrenceville, NJ
Three liver-damaging music events are happening on both coasts as well as in America’s heartland this weekend.
Prima Donna with the Mystic Knights of the Cobra – San Francisco Bay Area, June 25-28, 2010
Prima Donna and Mystic Knights of the Cobra in SantaCruz, June 25, 2010
If you are in the San Francisco Bay Area, check out the Mystic Knights of the Cobra and Prima Donna playing a four-show mini-tour. The bands will be making stops in Santa Cruz (with Luxury Sweets and SA90 at the Blue Lagoon, 6/25), Oakland (the Uptown 6/26), San Jose (Voodoo Lounge 6/27) and Sacramento (16th Street Cafe 6/28). I’ll be at two of the shows, and I can’t wait! More info on the gigs can be found at both MKOTC’s Myspace and Prima Donna’s Myspace pages.
Prima Donna is on a States-wide tour at the moment and will be playing New York City’s Bowery Electric on July 25, 2010. They’ll be touring the States until August 21st and then head off to Europe starting on September 30 until November 6, 2010. As Tre Cool said, Prima Donna are really big in Spain and Portugal (and all points in between). Don’t miss them here in the States and in Europe, too!
American Skate Skatopia 2010 – Rutland, Ohio, June 25-26, 2010