Concert review: The Dave Matthews Band (rubber match)

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Riverbend Music Center, Cincinnati, Ohio – May 20, 2016

Everyone enjoys his or her “down time” differently. Some people only truly come alive as a part of a group. They seek out others by instinct. Some people travel for the sake of it. Others commune with nature. A raging introvert from the womb onward, I’ve never particularly minded my own company. I love concerts, and movies in the theater, alone or not. Failing that, I tend to hunker down in my bomb shelter of a ground floor apartment and cycle through an array of entertainment options (books, games, music, movies) sufficient to make Chris Hardwick blush. Considering the subject matter this site routinely traffics in, tell me you’re surprised. Being outside isn’t exactly my default mode, though it can actually serve to make me much more appreciative of, excited by, and up for a particularly nice day, just not necessarily to see a show. Despite my friends who love them, I generally despise the obscene quantity to quality/expense to return ratio of all those ubiquitous multi-day summer festivals, preferring, as at any other time of year, to make my showgoing bones day-to-day in intimate, compact, dimly-lit clubs. Continue reading “Concert review: The Dave Matthews Band (rubber match)”

Concert review: The Dave Matthews Band (second opinion)

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Klipsch Music Center, Noblesville, IN – July 18, 2015

The Dave Matthews Band is among the great singular outliers in my personal musical landscape – itself a massive, loosely bound, often logic-optional continuum that, built up over the course of thirty years, was already surprisingly lousy with them. As a dyed-in-the-wool metal fan, my longstanding passion for this particular band has led, variously, to rounds of strident interrogation, sound condemnation, and, occasionally, clandestine approval*, from my peers, though that’s really nothing compared to the dismissive shade I’ve seen thrown from more respectable corners of the pop, rock and indie arenas. “Is Dave Matthews Band’s Under the Table and Dreaming any good 20 years later?” shouted the headline of, to me, a particularly provocative AVClub article on the occasion of the album’s inevitable anniversary reissue last fall. I read with bated breath. Continue reading “Concert review: The Dave Matthews Band (second opinion)”

Concert review: The Dave Matthews Band

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First Niagara Pavilion, Burgettstown, Pennsylvania – June 28, 2014

2014 marks my twentieth year as a fan of The Dave Matthews Band, and almost every year of that twenty, I’ve had the good fortune to see the band live at least once. DMB has, in that time, assumed the mantle of a true successor to The Grateful Dead as the sort of critically marginalized but super-successful live draw that inspires a peculiar strain of fanatical devotion from a surprising cross section of (not necessarily but often) young people. They follow the band around the country, reveling in the live experience like no other fan base I know, collecting live recordings both in person and secondhand, memorizing absolutely everything and obsessing over minutiae with their fellow afflicted. Comparatively, my own affliction is mild. Continue reading “Concert review: The Dave Matthews Band”