Thursday, May 17, 2007

LastNight: Modest Mouse Graduates to Meathead Fans

Thu, May 17, 2007 at 5:05 PM

Brock concluded the band North American tour dates sober, thinner, buffer, and apparently with some new balls -- one drummer for each rejuvenated testicle.

Sober Brock, rum-soaked teenyboppers rattle the San Jose Event Center Wednesday night. By David Downs "Play Dashboard!" demanded Modest Mouse's new shithead, fratboy contingent wearing Sublime and Ozomatli T-shirts Wednesday night at the San Jose Event Center. Isaac Brock and the Washington indie-rock six-piece Modest Mouse obliged, and it could've been, would've been worse than we would even know.

Actually we did know, sort of. Ear Bud saw Modest Mouse in 2002 on the Eternal Sunshine Tour with Cake, De La Soul, and the Flaming Lips. It was a disaster. Brock was wasted and bitched about playing into the setting sun for the entirety of his jagged, limpid forty-minute set at the Santa Barbara Bowl. Not so this week.

With a #1 new album "We Were Dead..." Brock concluded the band's North American tour dates sober, thinner, buffer, and apparently with some new balls -- one drummer for each rejuvenated testicle. The double drumkit action supplied a Bloc Party backbeat to nearly every song, be it "Custom Concern" or "Fire It Up". Meanwhile Brock and new bandmember, former Smiths guitarist Johnny fuckin' Marr -- for real, I'm not making this up -- had a sort of Guitar Hero guitar-off with Brock up -front. They made a shitload of noise with bassist Tom Peloso also handling keyboard and trumpet between them as they played a sampling of the old stuff and a fair amount of new stuff. Brock did "Ocean Breathes Salty" after a stomping, sports-event-style demand for an encore and the whole thing wrapped by 12:15 a.m.

Complaints: Sucky gymnasium sound; feedback up the ass; a soundman on crack; and Modest's newer, breastier, and tanned teenybopper contingent (could've been worse, I suppose). Other notable songs included: "We Got Everything," "Float On," "Satin in a Coffin," and a killer punk version of "Doin' the Cockroach."

Before the Mouse, a band called Man Man posited the question: what would an Ozomatli cover band sound like if it solely comprised isolated island survivors of some nuclear apocalypse three hundred years into the future? It would sound like Man Man, who managed to cycle in the use of percussive spoons, a fire extinguisher, toy horns, water, a xylophone, hand bells, saxophone, trumpet, organ, synth, guitar, and god knows what else. Sometimes it sounded like satanic polka, other times, more like a thrash Sufjan Stevens, either way, it was sick sick sick.

New York indiepoppers Love as Laughter opened. People really dug the band's crafty songwriting and general mellowness compared to Man Man's coke-out Devo routine. That is all. Here's some photos:

The Kids Trade Spit

Merch

Crowd

Modest Mouse

MM II

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