Amoeblog

lisa gerrard at the palace of fine arts

Posted by Brad Schelden, May 27, 2007 08:50pm | Post a Comment
So I saw Lisa Gerrard last night at the Palace of Fine Arts. I can't really imagine a better place to see the magical Lisa Gerrard than the Palace of Fine Arts. Besides maybe the Paramount theater in Oakland, where I last saw Dead Can Dance perform a couple of years ago. I usually like to get to the Palace of Fine Arts early so I can walk around and enjoy it, but we didn't have enough time and it was really cold last night.
My friend Rosemarie joined me for the show last night. I couldn't think of a greater person to join me for the show. I have not seen her enough lately so it was great to be able to hang out on such a magical evening. We both love the Dead Can Dance and Lisa Gerrard, so we were very excited for the show.

Seeing Lisa Gerrard is sort of like going to church. Her fans are all very devoted and would do anything for their Lisa. And it seems she would do anything for her fans. She really does give back all the love to her audience. You can just feel the love in the crowd. I really do love seeing Dead Can Dance perform with all their magical different instruments. Its also great to see the vocals of both Lisa and Brenda Perry go back and forth. But it was nice to see Lisa all by herself last night. She was joined by one of the members of Dead Can Dance, John Bonnar on keyboards. She was also joined by the guy who plays on the new album on keyboards and piano.

Her shows really are very magical. The feeling you get from the show stays with you years later. Her voice is amazing and really takes over the whole theater. I was literally staring at her trying to imagine how she makes her voice do the things it does. Her voice quickly changes tones and styles in mid song. Its like a whole chorus is coming out her mouth. She played a mix of her new album and her previous solo albums. The best of which is her first solo album, "The Mirror Pool."

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patrick wolf live at cafe du nord...

Posted by Brad Schelden, May 23, 2007 10:23am | Post a Comment

So last night we went down to the beautiful Cafe Du Nord to see the brilliant Patrick Wolf. Curt had never been there! So I was excited for him to see it. The bastard has only been to San Francisco once about five years ago. I missed that show and have been waiting ever since to see him live. I have loved all 3 of his albums and have been waiting patiently to hear how they sounded live. I was a little worried that he would disappoint.  It was hard to imagine him pulling off the brilliance of the albums in a live setting. But he literally blew me and everyone there away. I was expecting some over the top outfit and of course he met my expectations in this regard at least. I thought maybe some suspenders and a jaunty cap with a feather. He came out with a blue wig, shiny gold suspenders and little school boy shorts. He reminded me of a young Liza Minnelli mixed with Mccauley Culkin's version of Michael Alig. Maybe with a little Marc Almond and high school musical thrown in there. He even made a costume change half way through the show. He was joined by three young men on stage. Stand up bass, drums, and of course electronics. His violin player had gone back to England because of the "weather." The songs sounded great live and he was quite the little show man. He interacted with the crowd and told some great little stories.
 
He played a lot of my favorites from the first two albums. The live version of "To the Lighthouse" brought some little tears to my eyes. The highlight of the night was right before he came on stage. Five bears walked right in front of us to find their spot for the show. While a couple of them were obviously dragged to the show. The fact that they were there made me happy. It was overall a very stylish indie crowd. But its nice to know he has crossed the boundaries into bear territory. And I swear I saw George Lucas and Catherine Zeta Jones in front of me as well. The best thing about the show was how positive he was. He could have easily been a little mopey depressed emo goth on stage complaining about how horrible and tragic his life was. But he instead remained positive and optimistic. He shared not only his music with the audience but also a little bit of love. I left the show with a big smile on my face.

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the albums coming out today 5/22

Posted by Brad Schelden, May 21, 2007 07:29pm | Post a Comment
Out today is the new album by Erasure. Yes, they are still putting out albums. It seems like they are putting out a new album every year or so now. Almost as often as their best period in the late 80s and early 90s. Vince Clark, one half of Erasure, is for sure one of my heroes. After helping to form Depeche Mode and create one of the first brilliant synth albums "Speak and Spell,"  he went on to create two brilliant Yaz albums. Then came Erasure with such brilliant albums as "Wonderland, "The Innocents," "Wild," and "Chorus." Erasure has actually surprised me a couple times over the past couple years by creating some still brilliant songs. They basically invented synth pop back in the 80s. I can't really imagine where I would be without them. They have wrote some of the catchiest songs of the period that still remain great songs.

This new album is about their 13th full length album. Maybe their 15th if you count "Crackers International" and the brilliant ABBA cover album "ABBAesque." They have continued to make accessible dance albums over the years. However, with 13 or 15 albums there are bound to be some ups and downs. "I Say I Say I Say" really marked the end of the great Erasure albums, for me at least. Some might say it ended with 1991's excellent album "Chorus." In 2005 they ended up making a great comeback album, "Nightbird." I have to admit that I am still impressed with Erasure and their new album "Light at the End of the World." It may not have as many great songs as their albums of the past. But Andy Bell and Vince Clark still have the magic to make a catchy pop album. It is easy to find yourself singing along to most of the songs on the album. It might just be my memories of albums past that has kept me an Erasure fan after all these years. But they still have me under their spell. They created a lasting genre that has affected millions and influenced many.

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bjork live!

Posted by Brad Schelden, May 20, 2007 12:36pm | Post a Comment
So yesterday started off really good. My old friend from Long Beach Poly High School dropped by Amoeba. I had not seen Melissa in like 14 years. But of course we recognized each other and it seemed like it had only been a couple months. I didn't really realize that I miss her until we hung out a little.  The rest of the day I had little memories of all the important events I experienced with her. We had to talk about Cameron Diaz a bit. I still can't believe she has not talked about her formative years in high school drama. So I dedicate this blog to my friend Melissa. It's crazy its been so long.

Last night we had the pleasure of seeing Bjork live. For some reason I have never made it out to see her before. I kind of find it hard to believe myself. But it just has never worked out. Or maybe I've been to so many shows at this point that I am starting to forget who I have  seen.  Although it is kind of a hassle to get all the way out to Shoreline, it is kind of a fun adventure.  It's like a little vacation. Parking is just a bit of a nightmare. Even though they have hundreds of employees directing traffic, it still manages to take way longer than it should. There is also nothing really to do in Mountain View other than work at Google or go to a show at Shoreline.  But we did manage to find In-N-Out. So did everyone else it seemed. So we ate our meatless hamburger with hundreds of other Bjork fans. I don't ever eat fast food, but In-N-Out is my one exception. Even though the employees seem to be all part of some weird religious cult, they do make good food. And it is nice that nothing is frozen. They also don't look at you weird when you order an animal style grilled cheese!

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the angel collection...high school honor student by day...hollywood hooker by night...

Posted by Brad Schelden, May 17, 2007 05:56pm | Post a Comment
I finally picked up a copy of the Angel Collection on DVD. Not the Buffy spin-off but the classic 80s teen prostitute saga, "Angel." The original Angel starred Donna Wilkes as Molly Stewart (Angel). She also starred in another one of my favorites "Grotesque" with Linda Blair.  She was Molly during the day, a perfect honor student in high school and then turned into Angel at night, the teenage Hollywood Boulevard prostitute. This movie was released in 1984 and directed by Robert Vincent O'Neill. He had directed some great cult films of the 70s such as "Wonder Women" about kung fu girls on the rampage and "Blood Mania" about a sex crazed nympho who kills her father for the inheritance.

I'm not sure why, but this was one of my favorites as a teenager. I watched it one day on cable and was sort of obsessed with it after that. I couldn't actually remember what it was even called until I found it a couple years ago. You can imagine my joy when i found out it was released as a widescreen DVD box set. The film went on to spawn 2 more movies, "Avenging Angel" and "Angel III: The Final Chapter." All 3 are included in the box set. There is actually a fourth movie made in 1994 "Angel: Undercover." I have never seen this one but I can only imagine how horrible it is. Although, I would not pass it up if it ever shows up on cable. Angel is played by a different actress in each movie. The best of the bunch is for sure the first. Unfortunately you will not find any much needed commentaries or documentaries. But they do at least give you some deleted scenes and the original theatrical trailers.

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