Happy New Year, everyone! Hope you all had a lovely evening and are ready for 2006. :)
Nothing marks an arbitrary date like a list, so here are my favorite gigs of the past year. I saw a total of 66 gigs last year. Granted, the vast majority--even moreso than in previous years--was by Wilco, Jon Brion, and/or those affiliated with Wilco and/or Jon Brion. A list of top 10 Largo moments of 2005 might be more appropriate, but I like to believe that my interests are a little more diverse. Also, for whatever reason, a lot of my old favorites didn't deliver the same punch as they had in the past, and I either missed or was underwhelmed by a lot of up-and-comers. Oh well, I'll try not to ramble too much. Here we go:
1. Jeff Tweedy, Sooz's basement, 1/29/05: Perhaps the best weekend of my life yet.
2. Arcade Fire, Austin City Limits Festival, 9/25/05: I can't believe that the biggest Arcade Fire show was my favorite, but it was truly a transcendant occasion.
3. Jon Brion & Kanye West, Largo, 3/18/05: It's tough to pick just one Jon Brion show, but I have to go with the gig where we first got an inkling of their collaboration.
4. Wilco, Stubb's BBQ, 9/24/05: I wish the band and the crowd could be this engaged for every show I attend.
5. Jon Brion, Largo, 12/9/05: This show had its glorious peaks and unsettling valleys, and I'm unlikely to forget it soon.
6. Wilco, Elysee Montmartre, 3/16/05: My rock tourism goes international and/or psychotic (take your pick)! If you need an excuse to get yourself to Paris, you could do worse than going when your favorite band plays a small venue in the City of Lights.
7. Olivia Tremor Control, Great American Music Hall, 9/8/05: Rock reunions are pretty much a given from here on out, but this was easily my favorite of the recent batch. Keep Athens weird!
8. Wrens, Bottom of the Hill, 12/1/05: They served up a vivid reminder of what separates them from the pack: passion, unpretentiousness, and great tunes.
9. Colin Meloy, Cafe du Nord, 1/16/05: I wouldn't say that the Colin Meloy solo experience is as eye-opening as, say, a Jeff Tweedy show, but I loved seeing him shorn of the affectation that can sometimes overpower the Decemberists. And he has great taste in Morrissey songs.
10. Teenage Fanclub, Bimbo's 365 Club, 8/5/05: Though their latest album didn't knock my socks off, my old stalwarts always put on a wonderful show. They have my undying allegiance.
Here's some cool stuff coming to the Bay Area in the next few months:
» Mark Kozelek: January 18, Great American Music Hall
» Colin Meloy: January 20, Great American Music Hall
» Nels Cline and Friends: January 30, Yoshi's
» Jeff Tweedy: February 8 and 9, the Fillmore
» Bob Mould: February 11, Slim's
» Supergrass: February 23, Great American Music Hall
» Cat Power: February 23 and 24, the Palace of Fine Arts
» The Wedding Present: February 24, Slim's
» Bob Pollard: February 25, the Independent
» Robyn Hitchcock/Minus 5: February 27, Slim's
» Matt Pond PA: March 5, Slim's
» top 5 Largo memories