Interstate-8.com member, Luke, is fortunate enough to be going to the next few days worth of shows, and has offered to share his tour journal with us.
For the next few days we will be posting his blogs, photos and anything else he may stumble upon.
Here's his first review, from last night's performance at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC. He was also able to speak to Isaac, Tom and their new touring bassist after the show, and get a little bit of vague insight into where Eric may be.
On a side note, Fuze.tv will be live streaming Modest Mouse's set from this Saturday's performance at the Orion Music + More Festival.
Modest Mouse opened its summer tour with the first of a two night, sold out run at The 930 Club in Washington DC.
Glacial Pace label mates Talkdemonic opened with a twelve song, 40 minute set.
Nearly an hour after Talkdemonic finished, Modest Mouse took the stage. The band lineup was the same as at Frost Revival; still no Eric. Isaac apologized to the crowd for his "bad habit of coming out so late." The band opened with Dramamine, performing the extended version, borrowing lyrics from Life Like Weeds.
They then moved into Paper Thin Walls. Belting "laugh hard it's a long way to the bank," the crowd launched into a dancing frenzy, with some members moshing.
Next, the recently debuted Heart of Mine was played. Nothing much was changed from the original heard from Frost Revival, however, Isaac did tame the "bye bye bye" part down a bit, extending it a few lines as well.
Broke followed, with what I considered one of the best performances of the night. Isaac's guitar sounded perfect; fluid and airy, with the bass churning in the back.
Fan favorite Float On followed, with nearly everyone in the club chanting along.
Next: Tiny Cities Made of Ashes. Tom Peloso played the keys, which added a genuine feeling of doom to the already apocalyptic track. The bassist held down the bassline impeccably, with Isaac adding pointed jabs on the guitar. Isaac's added "hey hey hey's" hit like punches to the gut, his words leading an assault on the crowd.
A condensed Custom Concern was played, along with Education, with Peloso again adding his flair to the keys.
Cowboy Dan, another standout of the night, was played with Talkdemonic's Lisa Molinaro joining on viola. With each chanting of "can't do it, not even if sober!" the front row was doused in Isaac's spit, flying further back as he screamed louder.
"Here's half a Bob Dylan cover I know," Isaac said, starting Bob Dylan's You Ain't Goin' Nowhere.
Isaac was then handed his banjo, tearing into Bukowski, once again spraying the crowd.
Continuing with the banjo, Dance Hall was played, literally turning the crowd into a sweaty, dancing mass, screaming along with Brock.
Ending the pre-encore half was Gravity Rides Everything. Isaac played through, elongating the song by playing the feedback of his acoustic guitar. Towards the end of the song, Isaac seemed to become angry when a loud piercing noise shot through his mic. The band left the stage, returning about ten minutes later after the guitars had been re-tuned.
They opened the encore with another newly introduced song, Ansel. Again, not much was changed from the Frost Revival performance, however the pump organ almost sounded like steel drums this time around.
Isaac then brought out the banjo again. He started to play the intro to Satin In a Coffin but fumbled for a few minutes, eventually asking the crowd if anyone new how to play the song. Realizing it wasn't properly tuned, he handed the banjo over to a stage hand. As technicians tuned, the band crawled into an instrumental jam, heavy on Tom's upright bass. Eventually, the tuning was figured out and Satin In a Coffin was played, with Isaac utilizing his "static mic."
Dashboard was played, proving once again that studio versions of songs that I do not like can be played live and leave me dancing and singing along.
Rounding out the night, Fly Trapped in a Jar was performed with the crowd in full swing; dancing, moshing, screaming. Isaac thanked the crowd for listening to him talk and "sitting through the bullshit," as he glared at the sound technician.
As I was leaving the venue, a girl next to me was given the set list. I asked if I could take a peak and she allowed. For the encore, they had listed Heart Cooks Brain, with "maybe" in parenthesis.
After the show, I waited out back in the alley way, where I could see Isaac and Tom having a smoke. Eventually, I got Tom to come over and have a cigarette. We chatted about the band, with me expressing my excitement with the new material. I asked him about the status of Eric, and he said he was unsure. He told us he had to get going; his five year old and two month old were waiting in the hotel.
Isaac eventually made his way over to the few of us remaining. A few offered him weed, but he explained that he had "it covered." He signed autographs and took pictures, chatting with us. I was able to ask him about Eric's return and he replied, "uh, I think he retired."
Another fan asked why they weren't playing Philadelphia, to which he replied that he thought they were in a few months, but then corrected himself and explained that they would be added to the bill for Firefly Festival in Dover, Delaware. He explained that they had to wait until a certain date before they could officially announce this news. I asked him about the Heart Cooks Brain encore possibility, and he joked with me that he had just learned the lyrics after writing the song "18 years ago." He even said how he had the lyrics up on stage with him, but they had to skip over it when the banjo trouble started. Eventually, Isaac went back inside, getting the bassist for one of the fans that new him.
I got to talk with the bassist for a bit, asking him how playing with the band was going. He said he was extremely excited to be working with them. I asked if he would be replacing Eric and he said there hadn't been any talk of that, he was just "given the itinerary for the tour and hopped on the bus." When asked if he had been recording with the band, he said "nope, there's been none of that." I thanked him for an awesome show and bid him farewell.
Overall, it was a great show. I loved the opening with Dramamine, it really got the crowd going from the beginning. The crowd seemed to dig the new songs, most were bopping around and dancing.I also witnessed one of the coolest things I've seen at a concert: a mother and father, probably mid 40's, with there child of no more than 6 or 7 with them. The father was absolutely eating up every moment of the show, screaming along, dancing, even picking up his son and dancing with him. The kid had a huge grin on his face the entire show, vibing with his dad. I couldn't help but think to myself that the kid would grow up to have one hell of a music taste, being brought up on Modest Mouse live shows. Tomorrow brings night two in DC, which should follow suit and be another excellent show.
Thanks to Luke for his review. We're all looking forward to your next one.
I'm not sure what to make of these comments on Eric Judy. It still sounds pretty up in the air, and no definite answer yet. Your thoughts?
Source: Moon of the Milky Way