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Friday, May 16, 2008

radiohead 5/14/08 in st. louis

I was fortunate enough to see Radiohead this past Wednesday at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in St. Louis. This was the second time I've seen my favorite band, and the third will be this August at the wonderful Lollapalooza (which also features Rage, NIN, and Kanye West, among many others).

The opener was Liars, a band that I do like. However, the set was sort of uninspired. It's just really hard for me to get into a show at an amphitheater if it's daylight and there aren't any people there yet. The lead guy, though, was very interesting, to say the least.

The Radiohead show was really pretty fantastic, incorporating the best light show I've ever seen done for a concert, in person or otherwise. It's really too hard to describe, and I can say that catching a glimpse via YouTube videos does not really do it justice. Here is a picture I took at the very end of the show (spoiler to some degree, I suppose):

This picture reminds me of some kind of prayer done at one of those radical Evangelical, Jesus Camp-ish churches in the Bible Belt. Whoever Yorke & Co. hired for this tour to do the stage set-up is really creative and genius in many ways.

As for the performance: I'm not sure if it was because it was so early in the tour or if Radiohead is just in a good head space right now, but they we're really playing well, and looked to be having a lot of fun doing it. They had awesome energy and overall it was probably the best show I've seen in my short lifetime.

There's really not much point in going into more detail about it because I can assure that if you care you already have seen them this tour or have tickets in the future, or you don't care about Radiohead at all. Those seem to be the two general constituencies.

You can see my pictures from the show on my flickr set.

P.S. Props to Radiohead for a., covering Portishead in their sound check, and b., playing the entire Burial album "Untrue" in between the Liars and Radiohead sets.


Matt said...

nice review and i'm looking forward to see them in summer but can you explain me why you're one of these guys that take pictures during the concert even if they're all blurry and not really worth looking at?

comoprozac said...

Reading this reminded me of when I first heard Radiohead. Someone was playing "Creep" in the freshman dorm. They've really changed since those days. Either I'm old or they are...or both. That's cool that you were able to see them. I'd love to go to Lollapalooza, but we have this impending birth thing happening here. Have fun.

Jake said...


Digital cameras can only do so much. In fact, SLRs weren't even allowed to the show, and I don't think I would've brought one if they were.

Having said that, it's more of a tool for documentation than photography. Radiohead being my favorite band, I like to have this more for memory than for any kind of expression of art. So, for the reader, it's more to get an idea of how the lighting worked and/or what to expect visually. Had I really tried to get the best shot possible, I wouldn't have been able to enjoy the show. Which brings me to my last point that these pictures took me cumulatively less than three minutes to take, and most were taken at low energy moments, thus they didn't take away from my enjoyment of the show. I just turned on the cam, took a shot, turned it off. Three minutes out of the entire two hours they played seems relatively reasonable.

Thanks for commenting.