My Morning Jacket Palladium Ballroom Saturday, August 23, 2008
Better Than: Any show where MMJ just covers "Tyrone."
The big news, is, at this point, old news, really.
And, yes, it was awesome.
But let's not forget the other, two hours and forty-five minutes of the show, OK? Because those, too, were pretty awesome.
Not that I'm surprised. Hell, we even said it in the paper this week: My Morning Jacket is the best live band in the world.
This night at the Palladium was no exception. It was epic from the get-go. Even non-MMJ diehards would have been impressed. The band was at times rocking, at times classic rocking, at times jamming, at times funking around and, at times, crooning. There was literally something for everyone.
And, with the lights above the stage in a near-constant "We're not worthy!"-like bowing pattern, the whole thing had a mystical appeal.
So when frontman Jim James announced that, "by the power of Reunion Tower," Dallas never lets his band down, you could almost imagine him thrusting a sword in the air and beckoning Power of Greyskull--especially when he donned a dark cloak, as he did at various points throughout the night.
The lone dull point in the night came during a performance of the Evil Urges track "Highly Suspicious" (see here--not from last night's gig, though, sorry). That song's just weird--even for a band that has the kind of range MMJ has.
The rest of the night? Not a misstep. Not through the two-hour long first set (which made the Toadies look like chumps for not playing long enough). Certainly not through the surprise Badu cameo that launched the 45-minute encore.
It was amazing.
It was like being on drugs. The best kind. And with no repercussions. So when the band ended the night with "One Big Holiday" (see above), it summed things up just fine, thank you.
Critic's Notebook Personal Bias: OK, honestly? I don't own a single MMJ record, which, really, I need to rectify ASAP now that I've seen firsthand what the hype's all about.
Random Note: The place was way less packed than it was for the Toadies show the night before. Which I guess isn't all that surprising. And yet, maybe it kinda is...(if that makes sense).
By The Way: I stopped by Club Dada on the way back from the show to see what kinda action was happening at the spelling-challenged Elvis Castello tribute show. It wasn't a bad turnout--not as big as the Save The Boobs event next door at The Bone was, though--but every musician I talked to there seemed bummed that they booked the gig because it meant missing MMJ. They were especially bummed when I told them about Badu, of course. Ha! Suckers... --Pete Freedman