I went to a lot of live concerts this year, more than any other year I have been alive, and many of them were mind-blowing (while the rest were just merely awesome). Here are some thoughts on my favorites:
- The Decemberists at The Fox Oakland, February 14th
I wrote about this concert here.
- LCD Soundsystem at Terminal 5, March 31st
This was the last of LCD’s run at Terminal 5 before their final show at Madison Square Garden, and it was my favorite of the three I saw there. I had a much better spot at this show, even though I was near the back of the floor crowd and I thought they really just fucking laid it all out on the table. When they were playing “Yeah” or “Time to Get Away” and the synths were blaring I just could not imagine wanting to be anywhere else at that moment. It also really ignited my interest in making music, I wanted to be up there playing music like this as loud as possible. It was the highlight of a week that had nothing but good shows from one of my favorite bands.
- Robyn at Coachella, April 15th
- The Joy Formidable at Coachella, April 16th
- Mumford and Sons at Coachella, April 16
I wrote about my Coachella experiences here.
- The Mountain Goats at The Fillmore, June 20th
Probably tied with the LCD Terminal 5 show for my favorite of the year (although I think that was a special case, so advantage Mountain Goats). I saw the Mountain Goats in 2009 with Jason but at the time I was not very familiar with their stuff. It was an amazing show and I came home and bought every single album. I studied up and so this time when they played This Year, No Children and The Best Ever Death Metal Band in Denton I knew all the words. The band, and John Darnielle in particular, seem to love playing SF and always put on an incredible show and this one was no slouch. Just unbelievable. Since the Decemberists have closed up shop for a while, I think The Mountain Goats are definitely my number one recommended band to see live.
- Titus Andronicus at The Fox Oakland, June 22nd
I wrote about my obsession with Titus Andronicus, and this show, here.
- Cibo Matto at Bimbos 365, June 25th
After being obsessed with Cibo Matto ten years ago, it was unreal getting to see them live. It was super fun.
- Arcade Fire at Outside Lands Festival, August 14th
I briefly wrote the following about seeing Arcade Fire at Outside Lands:
Tonight during Arcade Fire’s set I started crying, once at the beginning of the set during Keep the Car Running and again at the end during Wake Up. It was wonderful.
- Supercommuter at The Paramount Theatre, August 28th
Supercommuter played last in a pretty awesome lineup on Saturday at PAX. By the time they got on I was really tired and ready to pack it up, but I wanted to stick around for at least one song. As soon as they started though, I could tell I was in it for the long haul as their music sounded AMAZING as loud as possible at the Paramount (a pretty large venue with huge repeaters). I loved Optimus Rhyme and so it was a very pleasant surprise to find that Wheelie Cyberman had ended up in a new band, and I love both Supercommuter albums to death. I started their set feeing extremely tired and ended it feeling pumped full of energy.
- St. Vincent at Treasure Island Music Festival, October 16th
I had listened to St. Vincent before but this was the first time I saw her live. She just attacks the guitar with an intensity I thought reserved only for Metal and wangy guitar rock, but at the same time writing these absolutely gorgeous songs. A bonus was that same night I ran across town to see Thao and the Get Down Stay Down at the Independent, Thao Ngyuen being another incredibly talented female guitarist. It was a very good day for that
- Paul and Storm at Cafe Du Nord, November 30th
Not many people came to this show, maybe thirty-five total, but I think we tried our best to make it up to Paul & Storm with our enthusiasm. Also the panties I threw on stage got picked for the line in “Opening Band” even if I did go extra creepy with them.