I cant post a full review here now because of the time, but ...
The show was incredible. My jaw dropped when they broke into Pictures of Matchstickmen - with Jonathan on violin. I do not mean to take Johnny down at all, but the violin on that song sounds so incredible.
Even the Cracker stuff they did sounded great - Jonathan joined in on a few standards (Dr Bernice) - the violin is a nice touch there. It was great to see a full band playing Cracker songs (most of the shows I've seen recently it's just been one or two people doing them) - these songs seemed so full once again.
They did several Camper tunes, and later Jonathan told me they were just warming up, they were going to play more at other shows. They did Eye of Fatima (1 & 2) and ONe of these Days, along with Sweethearts. They also did a couple instramentals .. one of them was the Mao song from TFLV, but I'm not sure of the other one (sorry).
For the encore I leaned a bit on stage and asked Jonathan to play Interstelllar Overdrive and he laughed a bit.
Then the whole band broke into it ...
They didnt get too far into it before it fell apart though, that has to be an impossible song to pick up after so many years. Just an attempt at the song was a dream come true though...
Oh, also for those star counters out there .. Bugs ("bugs got a job in the catskills" Bugs) was at the front door. I got to talk to him a bit after the show, and hopefully he'll be able to do some opening set or something at one of these shows.
Anyway .. no time, better review and a set list later ... I'm taking good notes and all that. : )
The rest of the review:
Matthew, Bill and I took off from LA to see this show .. and LA is the biggest metro area I've been in .. it went on for miles. (On the way back we saw a sign .. "LA next 10,000 exits" .. okay, not really, but you get the point...)
Anyway, we arrived a little late and missed Victor & Jonathan's set. We also missed the first few songs of the Cracker set.
The stage was set up funny ... It was almost a triangle. Frank was tucked away on a riser and Kenny had to set up on the opposite side of the stage - right below the Cracker album that appears on the Kerosene Hat cd somewhere .. it's an odd thing from Pioneer Town. (Karen got a picture of me and Bill near the album after the show too.) There were too many people on the stage so they were a little bit cramped. Victor had to hang out almost behind David most of the time. Greg ended up standing near the stage and when it was time for him to play he would take one step and be in his spot to play. Jonathan (JES) had to crawl through the crowd to get to the stage when he had to play.
Oh, the stage was also raised maybe 6 inches, and the ceiling was really low, so it was nearly impossible to see them at all from the back. It's a neat little club though...
I managed to worm my way up to the front of the crowd near Mark and Karen in just a few songs. Here is a partial set list from the show ...
1.?? 2.?? 3.7 Days 4.Mr Wrong 5.Dr Bernice (with JES) 6.Tania (with JES & Greg) 7.Golden Age (with JES) 8.Infirmary 9.Teen Angst 10.100 Flower Power Maximum (with JES) 11.? CVB Instramental with Greg & JES) 12.Eye of Fatima 1 & 2 (with JES & Greg) 13.Lonesome Johnny Blues 14.Shiner 15.Movie Star (DL broke a string) 16.Nostalgia 17.Pics of Matchstickmen (with Greg & JES) 18.Euro-Trash Girl 19.? CVB Instr (possibly Mao) (without Johnny or Kenny, but Greg & JES played) 20.Trials & Tribulations 21.Good Life 22.Low -encore- 23.Interstellar Overdrive (aborted - 1 minute long) 24.One of these Days (no Johnny with Greg and JES) 25.Sweethearts (no notes, but I'm sure JES & Greg played)It was incredible to hear Camper songs done by Campers live again at this show. Pics of Matchstickmen with Jonathan on violin almost brough a tear to my eye. Tania and Eye Of Fatima 1 & 2 got me choked up in a similar way. At one point David commented to the crowd that they had run out of beer and they wanted some more. There wasnt a response, so he yelled out "Jackson! Manage us!". Soon after that Jackson (the tour manager) appeared with a six pack of opened beers (which were quickly gone).
While they were playing EuroTrash Girl the mics went out, everything else was working, but we couldnt hear any vocals. After about a minute though, everything started to work again. It happened right at the beginning of a verse, and they picked right up again .. so it just sounded like an extra long version of the song to the people in the back that couldnt see the problems I guess.
As they were figuring out what to play for the encore I leaned up and asked Jonathan to play Interstellar Overdrive. I sort of meant it as a joke, but they started playing it - it was very recognizable to me (obsessive camper fan that I am...), but then it fell apart and they stopped it. It's got to be really hard to pick up a song like that after not playing it for 10 years ...
After they finished One of these days JES had to comment they were just making sure that the Camper songs were Y2K Compliant.
We, of course, hung around after the show and talked to a few people. Johnny introduced me to Hans and we talked about some Moby records that he has found a new interest in. (Yes - Johnny and Hans are into Moby!)
We talked to Frank a bit too, most of what we talked about cant be repeated though. : ) One thing he did mention is that the picture of him from the Alaska tour that is a close up of his face (sorry I dont know a link to the picture right now, but it is at Frank's home page in a weird format... Anyway, the original title of the picture came from David Lowery - "Free to a good home". I guess you'd have to see the picture to really understand though.
Back to top