Friday, December 25, 2009

this is the boy who once made his Christmas list in July

"So are you coming to pick me up from the airport?"

"Yeah, I'll get off work at 8. Please tell me that you're not bringing your entire wardrobe again this time. Getting your baggage takes FOREVER! It'll only be seven days, for God's sake."

"I'm going to bring it, even if it's mostly empty. For all the presents I'm going to need to take back with me. "

"Whoa, greedy, what if all you get for Christmas this year are hugs?"

"Then they'd better come with gift receipts."

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

you won't get this if you don't listen to Weezer

We just got back from the Weezer concert at the Aragon Ballroom* and I've gotta say, the band put on an excellent show. I only wish I could say the same for the people in the audience. 

Here's a little bit of commentary from H and I, Siskel and Ebert--style.

H: I don't know if I know how to do "Siskel and Ebert--style." Doesn't that mean that one of us has to hate it?

C: No, they agreed sometimes, right? Anyway, we can agree that we both loved the songs (except that one I didn't like) and that Weezer put on a great show. 

H: Agreed.

C: But those motionless dudes in front of us who only came to life for the Pinkerton songs, those guys I could have done without.

H: I could have done without them, the potsmokers, the chick next to me who was constantly updating her Facebook about how much she loved Rivers Cuomo. Coulda done without a lot of them. 

C: I was coveting the balcony seat of that one guy ROCKING OUT above us. Kind of like when we went to see Rancid and my boss hooked us up with center balcony seats. H, what are some highlights for you? (That's part of my s&e spiel.)

H: I just enjoyed Rivers's performance, because he was just fun to watch. And when they had that radio contest winner come out and duet "(If you're wondering if I want you to) I want you to," I thought it was going to be terrible, but it turned out pretty decent. I didn't know if they were putting any prerequisites on whether the person had to know how to sing or not. You know, at first. 

C: She was pretty good. She's from my hometown--of course she'd be good. I liked when he put on the blonde wig and did the Lady Gaga "PokerFace" cover. But the sad thing is that everyone in the audience was surprised. What's that about? That song is on the new album. At concerts I've been to in the past, I always felt lame because everyone already knew all the words to the latest album--which, duh, came out right in time for the tour. NOBODY knew any of the new songs, which I was pretty much rocking out to. I can admit it: I LOVE POP MUSIC.

H: Yeah they did "Let it all hang out" early in the show, and the crowd just stopped moving. Nobody was singing along. They were just standing there like they were waiting for it to be over. 

C: I think people were way too uptight. And I'm tired of people saying Pinkerton is the be-all/end-all of the band's catalog. Seriously people, there are WAY MORE SONGS that do not sound like that. GET OVER IT. As you can see, I'm not much of a fan of Pinkerton. I happen to adore the fact that Weezer's Cuomo is "ticking off some of his hardcore fans." Hello, hip-hop? I'm all about it!

H: It's like you hate Pinkerton on principle now. I think it's a decent album, but I agree, it's not the be-all/end-all, but their entire catalog is solid; there's not an album that I don't like. I don't understand how you're ticking off fans just because you do something they don't like. What are you a fan of the in the first place?  

C: Yes, I now hate it on principle. I can't believe people are stupid enough to think bands are supposed to sound exactly the same from album to album. Bands grow, too, people. Which is sad, because maybe I would have given it a chance if it weren't for the die hards who hate on everything else. Make Believe is the album that resonates with me the most.  

H: I agree. I'm always annoyed when fans don't like a band to experiment. I'm a fan of the *artistic* side of it. If you want to keep re-creating the same album over and over again, I'm just going to get bored with it.

C: Amen.

H: Less Than Jake is the same way. Some of their fans got pissed when they changed up the band a little bit.

C: Same with Madonna.

H: What songs didn't we hear that you wished they would have played? 

C: There were so many. Personally, I would have loved "This is such a pity." I'd say that's the song that made me really start liking them. It reminds me of driving around with you in California and falling in love. I also like "My best friend." But I'm a sappy cheeseball.

H: Those were good times. It's funny because it took me three or four full playthroughs before I started to really like Make Believe. On the flip side, their new album, Raditude**, I've loved from the first time I heard it. 

C: We could go on and on, but then it'd be like that part of I Love You, Man when Paul Rudd and Jason Segel were talking on the phone to "go over the setlist" of the Rush concert and Rashida Jones felt all left out. Actually it's going to be exactly like that. Here's the setlist*** from tonight's show, which was the first stop on their national tour: 

Opening acts: Jack's Mannequin

1. Hash Pipe

2. Let It All Hang Out

3. Tired of Sex

4. (If You're Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To

5. Say It Ain't So

6. Troublemaker

7. My Name Is Jonas

8. Perfect Situation

9. Why Bother

10. Dope Nose

11. Undone (The Sweater Song)

12. Surf Wax America

13. cover of Pink Floyd song that is killing me that I don't remember the name of

14. I'm Your Daddy

15. Can't Stop Partying

16. Beverly Hills

17. Pork and Beans

18. Kids/Poker Face 

19. Island In The Sun****

20. Buddy Holly

*References to Chicago places like this are what made me EXTRA love Audrey Niffenegger's Time Traveler's Wife.

**Apparently, Rainn Wilson came up with the name of the latest album.

***Don't quote us on this order.

****This was the first song in the second encore. Rivers pretty much performed it by himself using a loop-back machine. He started off by playing a few measures on the drums, followed by the bass, then a little rhythm guitar and he had the crowd do the "hep hep"s. Wil Wheaton linked to a similar-technique performance by Kid Beyond. The concept is very cool; probably one of our favorite things of the evening.