Saturday, October 13, 2007

Show Review - Saves The Day acoustic

Saves The Day, Dr. Manhattan, & Single File at Alley Katz in Richmond, 10.12.07.

This tour is Saves The Day's first acoustic tour ever, promoting their upcoming album Under The Boards.

The opening band was Single File, a three-piece from Denver with incredibly catchy garage pop. Their singer had an excellent voice, and they were fun to watch. They played a half hour of songs from their album No More Sad Face, including:

My Best Defense
The Grocery Store
Melody Of You
Look At Me I'm Crying
Zombies Ate My Neighbors

"Velcro" is easily their catchiest song, reminiscent of American Hi-Fi style pop. About halfway through the set, the guitarist and bassist switched instruments and continued on with the set. Both were equally proficient with the two instruments. I'll definitely be keeping an eye on this band.

The direct support was Saves The Day's new labelmates, Dr. Manhattan. They had an interesting setup: the drum kit had a shirt strapped to the front that read "CRUNK OR DIE!" and the keyboardist also had a kick drum propped up on two tupperware bins to beat on. Now, the songs these guys write are really interesting and inventive. However, most of the band was clearly chemically altered, and kind of embarrassing to watch. It was neat to see the keyboardist jumping around and banging on his drum, but the singer and bassist were just making fools of themselves. Hopefully they'll learn to grow up a bit - they have potential to have a powerful show.

Finally Saves The Day came on. David and Chris took their seats to a screaming crowd, who immediately began shouting out requests. Throughout the show they kept reiterating that they would take requests at the end, but that they would play a prearranged set first.

Everything was spot on. While Chris' voice has gotten more nasal over the years, he still hits every note. He's also still clearly passionate about his music, even the oldest songs. The set drew from Saves The Day's entire catalog, including Can't Slow Down and a number of b-sides. Songs included were:

This Is Not An Exit
Rocks Tonic Juice Magic
See You
Radio (new song)
Dying Day
Third Engine
Three Miles Down
Stay (new song)
Don't Know Why
Take Our Cars Now

*break before requests*

You Vandal
All I'm Losing Is Me
Holly Hox, Forget Me Nots
Sell My Old Clothes, I'm Off To Heaven
Shoulder To The Wheel
At Your Funeral
Jessie And My Whetstone

At one point, David had a look of complete astonishment on his face as the crowd finished a verse for Chris without his help. Saves The Day is another band whose fans are completely devoted to them. Chris was overwhelmed at the number of requests and the intensity of the requesters. On songs from Stay What You Are and Through Being Cool, I could barely hear Chris over the crowd, even though I was standing three feet away from him. The new songs sounded really good; "Radio" in particular sounded like a return to the sounds of Stay What You Are and Through Being Cool.

Note to showgoers: if you plan on getting completely drunk, please stay at the back of the venue. The kids who got there early to get a front row space will not appreciate it when you push your way in, spill beer all over them, and sing loudly in their ears while pumping your fist. Also, an acoustic show is not the place to attempt to crowd surf or stage dive. Thanks.

Other than that, it was a great, intimate night where it was easy to see the love of the crowd for the band, and vice versa.

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