I had no idea what to expect when I was headed to Metro Music Hall to cover the band Chiiild. For one, I had never been to the venue and for two, I had never heard Chiiild’s music before, so it was bound to be a night of surprises! Once I got in I was astounded by how cool and hip the venue was. It was a bar, so 21 and over only, and it had some really cool vibes going on! In the back was a merch booth set up for the bands, along one side was a huge bar area with bottles and bottles along the wall and along the other side was a good amount of nice, private booths that were elevated off the ground. Towards the front of the room was a large stage. I was very taken aback by the venue. I thought it was really cool.
Have you ever seen Bastille live before? I’ve seen them one other time when they played at the UCCU Center on the campus of Utah Valley University. After that Utah County concert, I knew Bastille was a band I would always enjoy seeing live when they came to Utah. The combination of hearing their melodic indie pop style live and the energy of the band make the Bastille live show one to never miss.
*This review contains mild spoilers. The main reveals in the show won’t be divulged but if you want to go into the production without knowing anything, please read this review once you’ve seen Miss Saigon.*
The New National Tour of Cameron Mackintosh’s revival of Boublil and Schönberg’s (Les Misérables) musical, Miss Saigon made its Utah premiere last night (Oct. 15) at the beautiful Eccles Theater in downtown Salt Lake City. When the Eccles Theater was being discussed and then constructed one of the reasons for building the theater was to be able to house some of the larger scale musicals that the newly renovated Capitol Theater is unable to fit on its 106 year old stage. Miss Saigon is definitely a large scale musical, both with a 42 person cast and a set design that takes every bit of the stage.
Sleater-Kinney hasn’t lost their fire. The show opened with the dramatic, almost industrial “The Center Won’t Hold” with fast-flashing, panicky lights. The band insisted that the show be open to all ages which meant special restrictions on alcohol (they’re cognizant of the influence their music had on a generation of adolescents and mean for that to continue).
When I found out that Vampire Weekend was playing The Complex, I envisioned them playing in the biggest of the two rooms, The Rockwell. But it wasn’t until I arrived at the venue that I realized this show wouldn’t be taking place in either of them. I walked up to where security usually checks bags and scans their metal detectors and found that there was actually a tent in front of that gate for Will Call and that the security checkpoint was now where you enter the show. The big lot that will usually house the tour buses was now the venue where Vampire Weekend would be performing. I have to admit I was a little confused. A stage had been constructed for this show and instead of a typical concert at The Complex, we were treated to one of the last albeit unexpected outdoor concerts of the year.
Robert Plant. When you just read that name, how many things came to mind? Led Zeppelin, of course. How about, legend, rock star, songwriter, singer, amazing singer, legendary rock star singer of Led Zeppelin?! In just writing his name, so many thoughts instantly come to fly through my brain. You can’t see his name without instantly hearing his voice. Just in the short time you’ve been reading this, how many Zeppelin songs have run through your mind? Now imagine getting to see this man in concert and getting to hear that voice in person. Right? Crazy! Then imagine trying to write down the experience to share with everyone. Not so easy, is it? I gotta be honest with you fine readers, this review was one of the hardest for me to write. Robert Plant is just so massively huge in Rock music lore. How do my words do this show justice? I’m not sure if they will, but you’ll definitely get a sense of just how epic the evening was. It was one I won’t soon forget.
What a night. What a line-up. What a crowd! Not since Warped tour in 2005 have I witnessed such an amalgam of people and music lovers; hardcore fans, old school punkers and die-hard Irish circle mashers. This diverse crowd swamped the bar lines around the dimly lit ambiance of The Union Event Center’s balcony; a tour de force of a show about to take place and I have a front of house pass to the hammering guitar riffs and spitting vocals of Wayne Lozniak, and Jamey Jasta of Hatebreed; the jamming smooth bass lines and pure American gravel that come with the classic rockers in Clutch and last but not to be left “tossed a lily,” the prolific Irish ensemble that is ever pervading, consuming and inclusive: Dropkick Murphys. The energy and palpitation flowing around the throngs of mid-generation butt-rockers was nothing short of soul shaking. If I could flashback to 2010: the last time I witnessed The Dropkick Murphys in concert. What a day of hardcore and death metal enormity that my then developing psyche just could not comprehend. This show had much of the same feeling and overpowering hunger for a sense of comradery and community. Everyone there had been listening to the same punky and essential hardcore ballads for years, letting it combat the inevitable yuppie growing within all of us; here they are, ready to melt faces and transport all of us right back into 1997.
Toto brought their 40 Trips Around the Sun Tour to the Eccles Theater in downtown Salt Lake City on September 24, 2019. I felt like I was running late so I ran into the theater. However, when I got inside the Delta Performance Hall I could see the crew still working on the instruments so I knew I had more time. As I made my way down the aisle to the front of the stage I could see and feel the excitement among the people.
When it was first announced that Glen Hansard was going to be playing the Eccles Theater my initial thought was, “I’m definitely going to that show!”. But as the summer concerts were announced I had a real dilemma on my hands. Two other shows that I wanted to see were announced for the same date. This was a problem. (I know, “Poor Kevin, he has to choose between three concerts to go to!”) I’m not saying it’s a bad problem to have but one I didn’t anticipate. One was a band that I’ve always wanted to see, and another that was playing their farewell tour. What to do? As I weighed my options the thing that came to mind was “Which of these shows will you regret missing the most?” Glen Hansard was the answer every time. I was not disappointed with my decision. Glen played a two hour, ten minute set befitting of the beautiful downtown theater hosting his concert.
Tuesday Night in Salt Lake City brought out dedicated fans to see fast-rising rapper, Tobi Lou. Kilby Court was buzzing and you could feel the excitement of hip hop fans eager to see the new but very talented artist. I had seen Tobi perform as an opener for KYLE about a year ago and was excited to see him headline for the first time.