Spring Fling – Concert Review

Spring Fling – Concert Review

Concert Review

by lsg original

 

Spring Fling

CAGE THE ELEPHANT – Photo Gallery – http://www.localbandreview.com/2016/04/cage-the-elephant-lsg-original/

SILVERSUN PICKUPS – Photo Gallery – http://www.localbandreview.com/2016/04/silversun-pickups-sspu-lsg-original/

FOALS – Photo Gallery – http://www.localbandreview.com/2016/04/foals/

BEAR HANDS – Photo Gallery http://www.localbandreview.com/2016/04/bearhand/

 

Hartford, CT
3.30.2016

lsg and Caito

lsg and Caito

I like to start with a disclaimer…”I am a fan with a camera.  So, my reviews are from the perspective of a concert-goer who is a photographer.”

I went into Spring Fling 2016 on 3.30.2016 with one serious preconceived impression.  I had seen Cage the Elephant a few years ago…and was blown away.  At that time, I could easily say that they were one of the best live bands around – and I have seen plenny in my happy life.  So, I could have either walked out of the XL Center in Hartford utterly disappointed or completely elated.  Guess what?  They continue to be one of the best live bands around, hands down.  But let’s back track before we get into that.

For those of us here in the nutmeg state, we were thrilled to see Bear Hands on a big stage.  It’s hard to believe I watched them at local festivals here.  Our hometown boys (Val Loper & TJ Orscher are from CT and Dylan Rau and Ted Feldmen went to Wesleyan U), demonstrated the fact that they absolutely deserved to be there.  I was pleased, as was the crowd, when they stepped onto the stage and immediately acknowledged that they were on home turf and paid homage to our beloved Hartford Whalers.  They blazed through a 7 song set that included their latest single from the album “You’ll Pay For This”, being released April 15 and finished up with their hit, “Giants”.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOlcDBXKhSU

I admit, I didn’t know much about FOALS (Yes. It is lovely in my cave, thanks.)  But, the crowd did, judging by the roar that came up when they came out.  FOALS ripped through 9 songs, wrapping things up with, “What Went Down” from the album of the same name. Winner number 2 (How can this get any better, at this point?)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ATrd2t9pLcE

I have not had the pleasure to check out Silversun Pickups before despite the fact that I dig ‘em a lot.  I won’t lie, it was a blast to see them perform hits like “Naked Eye” and “Panic Switch” (see disclaimer).  I sang along with the best of em!  I admit, I am partial to the rhythm section.  I was mesmerized watching Nikki Monninger.  She’s a true rock star.  And Chris Guanlao is just a monster on drums.  When they walked off the stage, as I so eloquently attest, they had killed everyone right in the face!  Mic drop. (OK.  HOW can this get any better…?)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9fLkb0GcQM

…This is how.

Back to Cage who are out on tour supporting “Tell Me I’m Pretty”, their 4th studio album. I can’t even.  Fuck.  Yes.  Fuck.  I was thrilled to have camera in-hand for this one (please recall my first paragraph).  They are a true rock band.  They have all of the necessary requirements down, as far as I’m concerned.  From the incredibly retro stage, to the tight band and the big as life front man, Matt Shultz.  And so many words come to mind when I think about his performance.  Flamboyant.  Superman.  I’m sure this has been said about Matt more than once, but damn, he embodies Mick Jagger in his movements and swagger.

The culmination of this insanely great performance was the seemingly obligatory stage dive/crowd walk.  At this point in the show, if you weren’t already thinking “He’s crazy/insane/incredible/ohmygod”, his beautifully choreographed swan dive into the crowd was both miraculous and bat-shit crazy.

Here’s an example. He’s among an illustrious group…

http://loudwire.com/most-epic-stage-dives-video-mashup/?fb27

 

Once he was extracted from the throng, he sat right next to me on an amp.  And in that moment, I was a groupie.  We looked at each other and all I could utter was “That was RAD!”  And really, it was.

The set list for the Hartford show was perfection throughout (see set list below) but these were highlights for me…”Take it or Leave it”,  “Punching Bag”,  “Come a Little

Closer”, “Mess Around”, “Cold Cold Cold”, “Too Late to Say Goodbye” (My fave off the new album), “Trouble”, and finally, “Teeth” for the epic riser jump (proud to say I caught that image!) and crowd surf.  Oh, Hell!  It was all unreal!

I could easily have seen every stop on this tour and never tired of it.

Bonus?  Brad Shultz’s stage dive into the audience AFTER the band had walked off stage!

Here’s a good representation of what you’ll experience from Cage the Elephant:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUB7MW9CWtg

Tour dates for Cage the Elephant

https://www.cagetheelephant.com/tour/

 

I do realize there is a lot of year left.  But, I will say right here and now, that the numerous tours, especially the onslaught of summer festivals and the various high-profile “reunions”, Spring Fling will be hard to beat.  As April 1 is the final day of this particular tour, you won’t get them all together in one shot.  So, you should seek out each band on this bill.  You’ll be happy you did.

Cage the Elephant Setlist – Hartford, CT 3.3.0.2016

  1. Cry Baby
  2. In One Ear
  3. Spiderhead
  4. Take It or Leave It
  5. Aberdeen
  6. Too Late to Say Goodbye
  7. Cold Cold Cold
  8. Trouble
  9. Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked
  10. Mess Around
  11. Punchin’ Bag
  12. Telescope
  13. Back Against the Wall
  14. It’s Just Forever
  15. Come a Little Closer

Encore:

  1. Cigarette Daydreams
  2. Shake Me Down
  3. Teeth

Lisa Sanchez Gonzalez – lsg Original

Lover of music and the visual arts, Lisa Sanchez Gonzalez is the insanity behind lsg original photography. lsg specializes in artist and performer photography. She’s had the honor of photographing national bands such as Weezer, Snoop Dogg, A Simple Plan, Paramore, Whitesnake, Wye Oak, and The Antlers along with countless local bands and performers.

Hailing from Hartford, CT, Lisa is a life- long music connoisseur. Growing up, her mother exposed her to everything from The Stones to Simon and Garfunkel to Earth, Wind, and Fire to Loretta Lynn…and everything in between. No genre was left unexplored in her vinyl collection. She saw her first concert at 14…Rod Stewart at the (then called) Hartford Civic Center. Thirty years later, it’s still her favorite pastime.

Lisa has two kids (grown!) and a day job. Her loves of music and photography have melded into a second career. And her love of CT keeps her promoting and pushing for local artists and performers. Lisa spends the greater part of her free time seeing and shooting live bands, performers, and artists and art work…and purchasing vinyl!

Scene Queen lsg on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Scenequeenlsg

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Lisa on LBR: http://www.localbandreview.com/author/lsg/

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