Soundcheck

Catfish and the Bottlemen – Soundcheck

Why do bands all cluster their shows around the same time? I can understand the appeal of a summer tour, and I get nervous about weather-related cancellations in the winter, but how about March? April, maybe? There were two shows I had to pass up recently due to time or money restraints, largely because this is also crazy end-of-the-school year time. There are kids’ events to attend and summer camps to be paid for and new clothes needed. My concert calendar wishlist is packed through the summer and I’m not even putting some of the big ones on it.

This has prompted me to set some criteria around what shows I will definitely go to and which ones I will base my decision about going on more spur of the moment factors. Is it likely to sell out? Upon hearing about the show, did I immediately check my calendar and my bank account? If those two things are a yes (and the rest of it works out), then I buy a ticket as soon as they go on sale. I work the other possible concerts in around the definite ones, which sometimes results in me blowing off a show that initially sounded like a great idea.

Take this past weekend. Cayetana were playing a show at an all ages venue and I’d even contemplated taking my daughter with me, but in the end I decided I wasn’t up for the drive. We’d been running errands all day and I’d been up early and the thought of the hour-plus drive home by myself made it seem less attractive. Probably if it had been closer to home or I had convinced someone else to come along, those things would have pushed me to head out anyway. I might come to regret that one but I’m hoping they’ll release a new album in the next couple of months and swing back around in the fall. Or, you know, twist my arm and make me go to Philadelphia.

One thing I am not interested in, not in the slightest, is any big festival show. In a renewed attempt to get Snapchat, I recently watched a story from the Bottlerock festival and I can’t say that I was favorably impressed by either the concert or the medium. I guess I really am old. And it has got to be something really special to lure me to a big stadium show. Radiohead is coming soon; to Madison Square Garden or Lollapalooza. I’ll pass. I’d love to see them again but if those are my options, I’ll sit tight and hope for something a little more approachable.

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6 comments

  1. Agreed with all! I heard at the last minute that the Buzzcocks were playing last night. And I love the Buzzcocks and have never seen them. (Although they played Riot Fest in 2014 … and I went, briefly, to Riot Fest, with free tickets I won from the record store … and it was so horrible that we only stayed an hour or two, not within the Buzzcocks’ window.) But … it’s been end-of-school mayhem, at the end of a tough year, and I haven’t slept 8 hours in weeks, and they were the headliner with 3 opening bands … and so, no. I didn’t even try.

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    1. Yeah, I’m with you on that one too. I blew off a show back in December, that I actually had a ticket for, but it was a rainy night, the venue was an hour away, there were 3 opening bands and I had to be up at 6am. Sorry.

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  2. Yes, as much as I’d love to see half the bands at Firefly, just the thought of that festival scene (I believe it’s on an air strip?!) makes me recoil. Heat and sun, horrific food choices, and port a potties keep me in check. I guess there’s a limit to my love of live music.

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    1. I contend that our love of live music is above the festival scene. I want to see a band play a full set, not just squeezed in between two other acts, and I want the crowd to be invested in seeing that band, not just waiting for the next one or posturing for selfies. I’m sure there are some great moments but I can hold out for a headlining gig and not feel like I missed out on anything. Port a potties. Ugh.

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