Friday, March 16, 2007

Rose Hill Drive - Live 3.8.07 - Washington DC

When I went to see The Who last week, I had no clue about the opening band. I got to the venue at 7:30, and shortly thereafter, the lights went down. Three young-looking lads with hair almost down to their waists come out and launch right into some good ole-fashioned style, loud rock ‘n’ roll. They get instant brownie points from me – I have a thing for power trios (and longhairs). Their sound is definitely borrowed heavily from Black Sabbath, the Rolling Stones – also reminds me a little bit of Wolfmother. Their lyrics aren’t particularly memorable, but their stage presence and sound are. No frills, nothing too fancy – just straight up RAWK !

My only complaint was I did not know who they were. The frontman mumbled their name 2 or 3 times, but never clearly enough for me to make out what he said. The people in the crowd around me were all wondering as well. It’s a shame they didn’t have some sort of banner posted or something. I bet a lot of these people won’t take the time to find out who they are. Lucky for them, I am uncompromising when it comes to these matters, and I wouldn’t stop the Google searches until I uncovered that they were Rose Hill Drive from Boulder, Colorado. The band consists of two brothers, Daniel and Jake Sproul in the front, with friend Nate Barnes on drums. Here’s the kicker – not one band member exceeds the age of 23. And they’re already opening for the freaking Who! That must be quite a head trip for them. I expect good things to come from these guys. I’m really looking forward to seeing them grow, and I highly recommend them. Check out this little promo video -

For more –
Rose Hill Drive on Myspace
Rose Hill Drive Website

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Who - Live 3.8.07 - Washington DC

The Who
Verizon Center in Washington, D.C.
March 8, 2007, 7:30 PM
Ticket Price $121.50
Opening Act: Rose Hill Drive (Stay tuned for another post about these guys – they rawk!)

This was my second time seeing The Who on this tour, and I was blown away again. Daltrey’s vocals sounded even more powerful than they did last time, and Townshend, well, what can I say? His playing, stage presence, songwriting – simply astonishing. Although he’s 61 years young, his guitar work hasn’t petered out at all. He strikes each note and chord with precision, and channels incredible energy into every riff.

We got all the greatest hits – I Can’t Explain, The Seeker, Who Are You, Behind Blue Eyes, Baba O’Riley, Eminence Front, You Better You Bet, My Generation, Won’t Get Fooled Again, and a nice encore Tommy medley including Pinball Wizard and See Me Feel Me. The addition of Real Good-Looking Boy was a nice surprise. Daltrey told about his boyhood fascination with the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll, saying that Elvis was one the biggest influences on his career path (the other one being Pete). They launched into the song while some video footage confirmed that Mr. Presley was indeed a “real good-looking boy.” They also played excerpts from the mini-opera on Endless Wire, with an introduction from Pete. He was almost apologetic about playing the new material, saying that he didn’t want to shove it down our throats. I was annoyed by how many audience members left for beer refills after that; but whatever, I’ve come to realize my dedication to the music is atypical – except here on MOG :)

Anyway, I’m kind of spacing on the rest of the details. I need to start taking notes! It’s hard to believe these guys classify as senior citizens…thank God they didn’t die before they got old. Of course I can’t deny my longing for a time machine, back to the Isle of Wight for instance, but I’m thankful that I had the opportunity to at least see The Two. And I don’t want to downplay their supporting musicians. Zak Starkey (drums) and Pino Palladino (bass) are filling roles that many fans claim are impossible to fill. They pull it off admirably, though.

I’ll leave you with a blistering solo from Townshend. This was filmed in Reno about 2 weeks before I saw them.