Show Review: Dinosaur Jr. @ The Mohawk (10/5)

It was a packed house, about as jammed up as The Mohawk has ever been. J Mascis ambles on stage. He slowly takes off his glasses, checks the stacks, sets the mic just so and commences to blast the crowd with a wall of guitar sound. This is how a Dinosaur Jr. show starts.

Locals Shearwater pulled homecoming duty to open and thoroughly impressed the crowd.

Read on for a few more thoughts and plenty of pics…

Let me take care of something – To the guy that cut in front of other people on the upstairs patio area and then proceeded to be offended by my polite request to lean in and get a couple of shots, you are a dick. It was crowded. You weaseled your way in front of another guy’s girlfriend and then you tell me to “find some room over there”? Get bent. I hate you.

OK. I feel better.

We started night off smashingly. I camped up front for fear of a packed house. I am glad I was up front for all of Shearwater‘s set because they were OUTSTANDING. Live mix was perfect. Jonathan Meiburg’s vocal was huge on the notes that matter. The band takes time to craft the noise and feedback, layering sounds as foreplay to the big chords and riffs, harmony duty shared by several members of the backing band. The current sound is harder, bigger, some of the warble of Jonathan’s voice dialed back improving the older songs. No Kim Burke in sight, this is 100% Meiburg’s band now. “Breaking the Yearlings” was all I wanted it to be.

Brief break, load out completed via the front of the stage because of the Marshall Stacks.

As mentioned, the arrival of J on stage completely lacks drama. He comes up on stage, has a ritual, reviewing the giant font of the set list taped to the stage. Pretty obvious that J’s eyesight is not great, but no glasses for him when playing. I don’t think he opened his eyes once the whole set.

J takes the subdued lead, but Lou Barlow and Murph drive the set. Dinosaur Jr.‘s rhythm section’s big fill is a necessity to allow J’s guitar work, fuzz and reverb the freedom to punch listeners in the face. Lou took lead vocals on one of the new tracks he wrote, “Rude”. “Start Choppin'” and “Feel the Pain” were the obvious crowd favorites, but I rather dug “Forget the Swan”. The night ended with The Cure cover, “Just Like Heaven”.

Now the shocker, it wasn’t as loud as I thought it would be and I liked Shearwater’s set more, but only because they really put it out there…

More pics at the photo site.

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