Posts tagged ‘Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros’

she’s got the medicine that everybody wants

I’ve been a little lazy with the blogging but, omg – I went to see Grace Potter & the Nocturnals (finally!) and Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros (you’re nobody unless you have ‘& the’ in your name) last weekend at the Congress theater for the Chicago Blues and Bluegrass festival, and have to say, I had a blast!

It was definitely an interesting take on a music festival, which to me usually means sunblock, tank tops, and lots of sweaty bodies, but being that it’s December in Chicago, they get points for…uh, making due? We unfortunately didn’t get there in time to see some of the smaller local bands, to which I might have had a different opinion, but it was a good attempt to put a whole lotta bands and a whole lotta fans in a sizable venue. It was a little unorganized, my miller lights ranged from $6 – $9 depending on how nice the bartender was feeling at that particular moment, and I’m pretty sure there was only one restroom in the whole place. The lines were horrendous, but all things considered, it could have been a port-a-potty.

To no surprise, Grace Potter & the Nocturnals killed their show. I’ve been obsessing about them for a while now, and if it’s possible, I like them even more after seeing them live. Grace obviously has some amazing pipes, a voice so powerful and emotional, you are a blown away a little more each time you hear it. I’d kill to have a voice like hers. I’d also kill to have legs like hers. It’s pretty unfair how much she has going for her, she’s such a talented musician and in addition, drop dead gorgeous! (um, I’d like just one of those charming characteristics, thank you) but she honestly pulls it off so well, you just have to sit back and appreciate her. (Sigh). She started off on the organ, rocked out on an electric guitar, moved to an acoustic guitar, and danced her little heart out. (Sigh). The band is pretty dynamic, which they’ve proven by their three albums that are all so different, but still have the same addictive bluesy tones and heartfelt harmonies. I initially started listening to them because I liked their bluegrass, more folky sound, but now often find myself craving their raw, edgy rock songs. Either way, they’ve certainly caught my attention, and certainly put on a great show! Unfortunately they only played for an hour, but managed to make the most of  it playing a few hits and one new tune. I was psyched I got to hear ‘One Short Night’ my favorite song on their new cd, and finished it off the the oh so catchy tune ‘Medicine.’ Hopefully they’ll come back to town soon so I can hear ALL their fabulous music! Can’t wait to see them again!

In between acts The Shams played a short set, they were actually pretty decent, but quickly lost the attention of the crowd. It’s hard to be the middleman. Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros finally came on (an intense stage presence, all 10 of them) and kicked it off with their hit 40 Day Dream. There was a lot going on up on that stage, and although I enjoyed it, I was a little overwhelmed. I wasn’t quite sure where to focus my attention. Don’t get me wrong, they sounded beautiful, but there seemed to be some disconnection between what was going on the stage, and the crowd. It’s possible Grace set the bar too high with her high energy, (or that I’m so obsessed nothing comes close) but the Zero’s seemed to have lost the spark. They did have a few high points – one of them being when Alex Ebert went shirtless – another when they played their hit song ‘Home’ and everybody went nuts. Not a single person in the crowd was quiet – EVERYBODY was on their feet singing and dancing around like a bunch of free-spirited hippies. They finished off their show with a few new songs, one where Ebert asked the crowd to take a knee (uhhh, on that floor? no thanks) and one long beautiful instrumental melody. They’re a talented herd of musicians, weather or not they’re a good act. Overall though, I enjoyed both shows, and I’ll definitely be interested to see what these bands do in the future!

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December 13, 2010 at 10:20 pm Leave a comment


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