Concert Reviews

The Jesus and Mary Chain Proved They Don't Need to Change a Thing At Their Dallas Show

Jesus was in the house on Tuesday night. And so was the Mary Chain.
Jesus was in the house on Tuesday night. And so was the Mary Chain. Vera "Velma" Hernandez
When The Jesus and Mary Chain released their landmark debut album Psychocandy back in 1985, brothers Jim and William Reid made it clear that fuzzy guitars and distorted feedback belonged in a new wave of alternative rock.

They pioneered a sound that embraced the “I don’t give a fuck” attitude of earlier punk bands like the Sex Pistols but added a charming juxtaposition of power-pop hooks and sad bastard lyrics.
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Leah Lane of Rosegarden started the party.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez

And although the brothers have mainly remained just shy of mainstream popularity, The JAMC are one of the most influential bands of the ’80s post-punk and shoegaze era, paving the way for bands like My Bloody Valentine, Slowdive and The Raveonettes.
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Vera "Velma" Hernandez

Concertgoers in the band’s early days would have expected the unexpected at a JAMC show, many times witnessing drunken misbehavior, instrument smashing and anger-induced mic-tossing moments on stage, and at times audiences would have been lucky if the sets lasted longer than about 20 minutes. And after 37 years, the Reid brothers, notorious for their ongoing feud with one another, still give a middle finger to any expectation placed on them.

These days, perhaps simply because of age, the live performance antics have dramatically dulled. But at Tuesday night’s show at the Granada Theater, the Chain didn’t need to be over the top or do anything other than simply play the songs fans have loved for decades to receive a roaring, Texas-sized welcome.
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Dylan Stamas of Rosegarden Funeral Party.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez

One of only four stops on their U.S. tour, the Dallas show kicked off with “Amputation” from the band’s 2017 album Damage and Joy. The song starts with the lyrics “Tryna win your interest back/But you ain't having none of that,” which is reportedly a response to the band’s perceived lack of interest from the press over the years. But interest from the audience was in no short supply, with many in attendance ranging in age from gray-haired, longtime Gen X fans to doe-eyed, budding punks seemingly at their first real rock concert.
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Rosegarden's newest member, Michael Ortega.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez

And the Mary Chain, despite both brothers just entering their 60s and spending 19 years between their last two albums, still sound like angry teens, coming of age in a world that doesn’t understand them. And maybe that’s why they’ve continued to appeal to a younger audience. It’s as if no time really passed since the ’80s, and listeners unaware of Damage and Joy could be forgiven for assuming the album’s tracks were part of some previously unreleased record from the band’s heyday.
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Leah Lane from Rosegarden Funeral Party set the tone as an opener.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez

One part of the band’s performance that was not unlike their earlier days was the almost total lack of communication with the audience. Frontman Jim shared only a few brief “thank yous” with the crowd between songs, and there was no introduction of the band members. The lack of banter certainly allowed time for the impressive 19-song setlist. And while Jim, William and their touring band’s stage presence was fairly mild-mannered, Jim’s vocals were just as raspy and weighty as ever, embodying the unique angst that makes the band so compelling. And once the fourth song, "April Skies," off the album Darklands, started, the crowd was completely overcome with excitement.
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Fans gathered at the Granada for The Jesus and Mary Chain.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez

The theater was packed with fans gently nodding along to the music, and just as many pumping their fists and moving their whole bodies. But nobody seemed to have a better time than one woman in the middle of the crowd, dancing on one of the venue’s table-top railings, seemingly revisiting her own angsty youth. 
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Jesus was in the house on Tuesday night. And so was the Mary Chain.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez
The biggest crowd reactions, though, came during the 13th song on the setlist, "Nine Million Rainy Days," and during the first encore, the fan favorite "Just Like Honey," in which Jim invited opening act Rosegarden Funeral Party’s Leah Lane on stage for backing vocals. The Dallas-based gothwave band, Rosegarden Funeral Party, had an opening performance that pleased the crowd and was an excellent pairing with The Mary Chain’s own set.
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Jim Reid and his brother William have been consistent their entire career.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez
Ultimately what The Jesus and Mary Chain proved at their Granada Theater show was that they don’t need to chase any new sound or trend to remain relevant or liked. They showed us that sometimes the "same old, same old" is just fine, and actually incredibly cathartic and welcomed. Fans enjoy their consistency, which isn’t routine with most bands that have been around for 37 years. And it’s a testimony to the clever songwriting and innovative music making of the brothers Reid.
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Scottish band The Jesus and Mary Chain rocked The Granada.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez
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Jim Reid from JAMC.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez
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The Jesus and Mary Chain were just like honey on Tuesday.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez
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The Jesus and Mary Chain and Rosegarden Funeral Party backstage at the Granada.
Vera "Velma" Hernandez
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Diamond Rodrigue
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