Monday, January 08, 2007
Stephen Malkmus and the Jicks at the El Rey Theatre
I made it to the El Rey Theatre just in time to greet Stephen Malkmus with a "What's going on?" as he walked in behind me to the venue. I had turned around expecting to see my friend but saw Stephen instead and was caught way off guard. What do you say to the man who has written so many classic songs that were the soundtrack to my college years? I made my way thru the crowd and started to have flashbacks of the Knife show as the temperature in the El Rey was steadily climbing. Entrance was on the stage and rocking out. Entrance is an interesting group composed of Paz Lenchantin(A Perfect Circle, Zwan) on bass, Guy Blakeslee on a flipped over right handed Fender Mustang singing lead vocals, and Derek James on the skins. Their sound was a psychedlic '60s rock/folk vibe with sprinkles of fuzz. You could not help but think about comparisions with Jimi Hendrix due to the sound and the lefty guitar. He did have some technical problems as his high E guitar string broke and he asked the crowd if they had a spare. Paz and Derek played a bass and drum groove in the meantime. After seeing a two hour set from My Morning Jacket, I was expecting an hour and a half set from Stephen Malkmus at the most. I was wrong as the band played for 2 hours! I did enjoy his last album Face The Truth but I still think his first solo album was more accessible as well as Pig Lib. With the addition of Janet Weiss(Sleater Kinney/Quasi) on drums, the new songs were amazing!! One song featured Stephen rocking the bass with good proficiency! Some the highlights included "Jo-Jo's Jacket","Vanessa from Queens","Animal Midnight", "Dark Wave" and "Pencil Rot". One of the new songs "Saga" was the closest sounding Pavement type song that I heard since the disbandment of Pavement. Steven Malkmus was switching between a sweet goldtop Gibson with P-90 Soapbar pickups and a Fender Jazzmaster. His amp setup involved an Orange head with cab and a Matchless amp for clean tones. This show was so good I decided to brave the traffic on Friday after work to see him at the Glass House. If you have any love for the genius of Steven Malkmus, you will be there on Friday. You will be a bigger believer after you hear the new stuff!