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Concert Review: BRMC at Trees, Oct. 24th, 2010

BRMC no longer stands for “Black Rebel Motorcycle Club”. After their amazing show at Trees in Dallas, TX, last Sunday night, it now stands for “Badass Rockin’ Mind-Blowing Concert”. In other words, my new drug. Their concert was so good, it felt like what I imagine cult members think they’re gonna feel like after they drink the Kool-Aid.

When I woke up on Monday morning, the whole night felt really surreal, like a meth-head dream. I’ve never smoked meth though, so I have no idea what that feels like. The surrealism of the night before makes me think BRMC concerts are drugs in and of themselves, only better since they’re less likely to kill you. I’ve only been to two of their shows, and now attending more is an absolute necessity. In March earlier this year, they came to the House of Blues in Dallas, and the show was good, but Sunday night’s was way better. This was either because Robert Levon Been was on fire, or because this time around, there weren’t any douchebags asking for a tangerine to the face.

I made my friends get to Trees early with me so we’d avoid March’s nuisance of having four drunken assholes shove their way to the front of the crowd halfway through BRMC’s set and start groping each other right in front of us. I don’t mean these people were making out—I mean they were full-on near-banging right in front of us. I know it’s a rock concert, but it’s not a porno, and lemme tell ya, these people were definitely auditioning for Super Sluts 4: The Return of Dr. Cock. For whatever reason (I don’t want to know why), my boyfriend had a tangerine in his pocket and pelted it at their faces mid-makeout. It didn’t stop them. But I digress.

Anyway, what really made the show amazing was Robert Been. As a 20-year-old female, naturally I was delighted when I ended up being right in front of him (seriously, like right in front of him), pressed up against the stage, staring up at the bass-toting god. Also, I touched his bass twice, and it was awesome. It felt like… a bass. Who would’ve thought that a bass would feel like a bass? The girls next to me touched it too, and I don’t want to seem creepy or anything, but I’m pretty sure they, as well as the rest of the girls in the audience, were continually getting audiogasms.

BRMC opened with “War Machine”, which I swear is even better live than on Beat the Devil’s Tattoo, and closed with songs like “Salvation” and “Shadow’s Keeper”. The best part of the audiogasm concert was that they played for over two hours. Over TWO HOURS of BRMC. Seems like Salvation to me.

Salvation indeed.

Mid-set, Been started playing a slow, pretty, acoustic ballad that felt familiar, but not from any BRMC albums. When he hit the chorus, it was revealed that he was playing an oddly beautiful but hilarious cover of Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun”. I was torn between laughing and being mesmerized because I didn’t know 80s bubblegum pop could sound like that. As if every girl in the audience wasn’t dying already, he started smiling (which was so adorable one girl fell over… maybe she was just drunk… I choose to believe it was the cuteness, though) and told the audience that we were a lot of fun. Then he transitioned his hybrid of gorgeous slow song and Lauper pop hit into “Sympathetic Noose”, then “Mercy”, and played it wonderfully, ad-libbing the lyrics a bit for extra oomph.

Been covering Lauper’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun”. Most of the girls in the audience were more than ready to have fun with him by the end of this song.

And let’s not forget Leah Shapiro, who’s performance was cooler than dry ice, except dry ice actually kind of sucks because it burns you and stuff, so never mind, that’s a bad example. But her drumming was fantastic. I went to the show determined to meet the band afterward, and we did. We hounded Leah when she came out, and she was totally nice about it and gave us her autograph with a “scribbler” (what she referred to as a pen—so cute!). She looked ethereally tired, like she was on a runner’s high, or rather, a drummer’s high. Before the show, I’d seen her step off the tour bus, and I almost fainted, and meeting her afterward was even more exciting. We only talked to her for like 30 seconds, but hell, that was enough for me.

Which brings me back to Been (I know, I know). We took pictures with him, he put his arm around my friend and every female within a five mile radius suddenly wanted to be her shoulders, and even though we only met him in passing (again, about 30 seconds), he was nice. We didn’t want to bother him or Leah for too long. They’re busy rock stars who’d just played a marathon set.

Been looking smooth, me looking freaked out because holy shit, that’s Robert Been.

Don’t get me wrong, Peter Hayes was great too. How could he not be? The man’s voice is great as his hair is wild. I (illegally?) recorded his acoustic performance of “A Fine Way to Lose”, and I’ve been listening to it ever since. He’s just so damn talented, just like Been and Shapiro. He seemed like he was on something, though (which is no surprise, given that often times, famous musicians are on something), but it made meeting him after the show pretty funny. He wandered out of the building, got swarmed by adoring fans, and had a look on his face that said “Where the fuck am I?”. Because of his disoriented-deer-in-the-headlights demeanor, after getting his autograph, I backed away slowly and decided the more sober Leah and Robert were better choices for photo ops. I didn’t want to piss him off or anything.

Hayes on stage, Hayes off stage.

If BRMC comes to your town, go see them. You need to see them. Seeing them at a small venue like Trees was seriously amazing, even if I’m not going to get my hearing back for another week. If they ever come to Dallas again, I’ll be there, and you should be too.

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3 responses

  1. Kate

    Peter’s a doll!

    October 28, 2010 at 12:38 am

    • He was really nice to the fans he interacted with. He just acted very strange around my friends and I… then again, we’re strange, so maybe that’s why 🙂

      October 28, 2010 at 8:50 am

  2. Mik

    BRMC is the best rock band in the history of music. Sound/emotion/lyrics/timing: they have it all. Name any band better and I will tell you why you’re wrong. Their heritage link to Been’s fathers band, “The Call” is taken to the next level, and that level is that BRMC is American rock’s greatest achievement. Just listen to the perfection of Baby 81, and then let the latest iteration take you straight to rock euphoria.

    February 5, 2011 at 12:24 am

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