Live Review: Life After Laserdisque; Past Punchy and the Present tonight…

Category: Blog — @ 5:43 pm February 25, 2006

That’s it. I’m not going to post CD reviews the day before a band’s CD release show anymore. Makes me look like an idjit.

Yesterday I said Life After Laserdisque’s new disc reminded me of Blood Sweat and Tears, which it does at times. Then I go see them live and they sound nothing like BS&T. In fact, they sounded nothing like their CD. Good thing nobody reads this blog. LAL just sorta tossed out most of the retro posing and amped up the modern edges at last night’s O’Leaver’s gig. The arrangements were more uptempo than on the record, with brash guitar and keyboard lines glowing at new angles to a sound that bordered on post-punk prog rock. Still, there was plenty of jam-band stuff going on, including probably the first drum solo I’ve seen since my concert-going days at the Civic Auditorium. There was even a blitzed guy in the audience that looked like Trey Anastasio doing a pseudo hurdy-gurdy dance — it doesn’t get more hippie than that. Frontman John Klemmensen looked relaxed belting out his yodel-like vocals all evening, pulling the capacity audience into a fun-loving party stance — yeah, this is one of them “good-time bands.” Xtra-special features included a video reel that played on the plasma TV — a conglomeration of stuff that included a hilarious safety video (Safety Only Takes a Second), an NBA slam-dunk contest, martial arts demonstrations and a long sequence from a cheesy horror flick that just seemed to go on and on and on.

Opener Landing on the Moon played a relaxed set in preparation of a mini-tour that takes them to Denver tonight and Lincoln tomorrow. The evening was also the unveiling of O’Leaver’s upgraded PA. Sure enough, mounted from the ceiling were two big, beefy JBL speakers. The overall sound was indeed better, fuller, etc., but the vocals still sounded somewhat awful. The mikes were an ongoing topic of discussion throughout the evening. Was it the microphones themselves? Some said yes, but almost everyone pointed to how the microphones were wired into the PA. Theories varied. Look, I don’t know anything about the science of sound engineering, all’s I know was that the vocals sounded like they were coming out of a megaphone. Not good, but once they get that figured out, O’Leaver’s sound will have entered the big leagues where it belongs.

Tonight, Past Punchy and the Present at The 49’r with Midwest Dilemma and The Ointments. $5, 9:30 p.m. Expect an over-capacity crowd. Look for me. I’ll be the guy standing in your way.

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