Ryan Adams & the Cardinals live [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


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10-18-2007, 07:29 AM
Went to the Mobile show last night. It's hard for me to get to a show during the middle of the week and I had to wait to the last minute to get my tickets as things fell into place so that I could go.

Then yesterday I read an interesting account of the B'ham show the night before. It seems that Ryan doesn't care for his audience shouting out song requests so in B'ham he cut his show short because a small group of concert goers kept yelling "Halloween Head" - a track from Easy Tiger. I wasn't sure what to expect from Adams but I knew there would be audience members yelling out requests.

As for the music, I have Easy Tiger but I haven't listened to it all the way through or that carefully. My initial impression from listening to the first few tracks and from seeing Adams and the band on Nissan Live-Sets on MHD was that the songs are conventionally structured and tightly played so I guess that's what I was expecting.

To my surprise, the show had more variety. The band kicked off with back-to-back-to-back numbers that included extensive jams in the middle section of each song. I was caught off guard because I didn't think of these guys as a "jam band". My interest waned a little as one of the jam sessions got a little monotonous just before the band stepped back into the song structure.

Then, it got more surprising. These cats began pulling off some of the best noise fest breakdowns I've heard and I'm a Sonic Youth fan from way back. I would say that maybe on two songs it was apparent that Adams was improvising and the band was trying to follow his lead. It was like Adams ran out of places to go and they all had to pull it back together to return to the song structure.

HOWEVER, for every other song in which they tried the noise fest breakdown, the build up and the transition back to the song structure were seamless in vintage Sonic Youth style.

There were maybe one or two songs that were played in a conventional structure during the main set, but the band didn't display how tight they could play together until the encore. The first two songs of the encore, "Two" from Easy Tiger was one of them, were played as if they were highly polished final products from an album. It was obvious these guys have chemistry.

Adams was a little preachy or maybe pretentious is the right word when the audience began shouting out song requests, but the mood relaxed and he stopped taking himself so seriously when some dude in a husky voice shouted, "Wind beneath My Wings". It seems that Adams has his own ideas about how things should go not only on stage but also in the audience. He was certainly sincere in his expression that his songs are gifts to the audience and he really desires that his audience accepts them the way he presents them. But you can't teach old dogs new tricks. Hopefully, his expectations for his audiences aren't too high or he's going to be let down almost every night. I fully expected someone to shout out "Free Bird" just to see if it got under his skin. Someone missed the mark by a hair when they shouted "Hotel California". Anyhow, Ryan Adams and the Cardinals played almost 2 1/2 hours. It was obvious that they were "on" as a group and were really into what they were doing. They never left the stage even during the ovation that preceded the encore. It wasn't the weirdest show I've seen by far, but it wasn't all that conventional either. I had a good time and heard some good music. I'd catch them again especially on a Fri. or Sat.

10-18-2007, 10:04 AM
I once read that he walked off the stage when someone yelled out for Summer of '69. LOL.

10-18-2007, 11:36 AM
I once read that he walked off the stage when someone yelled out for Summer of '69. LOL.

That's funny! You'd think an artist would appreciate humor like that.

He was rather easy-going in his banter with the audience last night. He stepped over to the keyboard one time and picked out the notes from "Close Encounters". We all chuckled as he looked up at the ceiling.

There was something for almost everyone though. For each stop on his tour there is a limited edition poster unique to that city. My wife is into local and regional art work at the moment so we had to get one. The leftovers from each stop are for sale on his website. The Mobile and Birmingham posters haven't been put up yet. The Mobile poster features the USS Alabama battleship anchored near the Port of Mobile. If the B'ham poster (which we haven't seen yet) features the Vulcan statue, I'm sure we'll have to get it, too. My wife keeps bugging me to take her to see the Vulcan.

10-18-2007, 02:08 PM
I once read that he walked off the stage when someone yelled out for Summer of '69. LOL.

If memory serves me correctly, the guy did request a Bryan Adams song and Ryan insisted he be thrown out of the place. They did escort him out but I think they either refunded his money or let him back in. Ryan HATES when people either confuse him with Bryan or when they request BA songs to tease him. Guess he has thin skin when he should be happy to have people paying to see him. He needs to figure out a way to deflect that s<a>hit and move on or they'll keep harassing him. Duh.