Adrian Belew Power Trio Stickmen The Canyon 10/21/2011

This was my third concert in three nights, with a television taping, lots of partying and little sleep in between (and before and after). I won’t lie- being either hung-over and majorly sleep-deprived is a tough way to make it through a week. By the time this show started, I had just loaded up on a huge meal.  It took a few minutes to get inside and it sounded awesome while waiting in line.  The music was great, the sound was fine (a little loud, but clear as day), but I started to find reasons why I wasn’t totally enjoying it- the very warm temperature of the venue (I kept going toward the open door for fresh air), my “food coma”, the miserable sightlines to the stage from the floor- Danny Carey and several others of similar height blocked the view of the riser-less drummers and most of the hands and arms that were doing the string work.



Stickmen (Tony Levin, Pat Mastelotto and Markus Reuter) played some heavy stuff that sounded awesome- the pounding stick and drums were thunderous, although I did get a little tired of the "touch" guitar after a while. I wanted him to bust out with a pick and throw down some arpeggios Yngwie-style, but no such luck.  To conclude their brief set, they rocked the Firebird Suite. Also, as previously mentioned,  visibility was an issue between the tall crowd (and I’m not short) and people trying to record the show onto their cell phones.  I found most of the people in the crowd to be rude and annoying, which is normally not the case at the otherwise friendly Canyon Club.   And don’t people know that music sounds like shit recorded through a cell phone? Judging from YouTube, obviously not.   Spoken like a truly fatigued concertgoer…



The Adrian Belew Power Trio came out and blazed through a set with the remarkable Julie Slick on bass and Tobias Ralph on drums. It was a great jam (save the vocals in my case). Phenomenal playing, great guitar sounds, revolutionary bass and unbelievable drumming.  Then they came back as a mixed trio playing King Crimson songs and added additional musicians as the set deepened. By the end, everyone was on stage (including Danny Carey for a super-grand-finale.) All my friends were super-stoked with this concert and I wish conditions had been better so I could share in their same amount of enjoyment (my mistake). I would have stuck around to talk after the show, but I needed to go home and be a responsible dad instead.


Looking back, this show was WAY better than I give it credit for.   I think I really paid for my poor choices over the week, my resulting somewhat crummy attitude and my inability to just relax and enjoy this incredible show.   I’m listening to Julie Slick’s solo CD right now- she totally rocks.   So does some of the poor footage I obtained (thankfully, none of these are       YouTube camera phone videos)

A word of caution- this is the worst of all the videos in terms of the visual portion, but it has good enough sound (it’s the reverse of standing up front like a dumb ass trying to record a friggin’ concert with a cell phone:



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