Mark Lanegan Live Appearances, 2014
The Neptune Theater, Seattle, WA 29 October, 2014
My wife and I showed up at the Neptune just before 9:30 and unlike the Showbox earlier this year Mark had yet to take the stage and his set wasn’t almost half over 🙂 Both Lyenn and Sean & Zander had played though. I went to the merchandise stand and found they had a new live CD for Iceland which I picked up with no hesistation, so far so great 🙂
After missing out on the Blues Funeral full band tour tonight’s show was an absolute highlight for me, and the first time in 11 years the Mark Lanegan Band played Seattle . Yes Mark’s played here at least as many times in those years, but always as part of one collaboration or other or lately a series of same-y live acoustic/electric solo shows. Although Jeff Fielder thanked soundman Martin Feveryear at the end of the show for making the band sound as good as he could, I was a bit underwhelmed with the opening duo of Gravedigger’s Song and Harvest Home (the awesome synths from the album criminally buried in the mix). Mark was in great voice the entire night and his vocals well placed above the instrumental perfectly from the beginning, a welcome change to the Trees or QOTSA days.
Next up was 4 straight older tunes beginning with a great version of Sleep With Me then One Way Street and One Hundred Days and finally one of my favorite songs Resurrection Song. I was starting to lose hope that Mark was going to get back on the BF track or play many songs from the new album and then the rockin’ pairing of Riot in the My House and Quiver Syndrome back to back put my fears to rest as both sounded great! The audio mix was well improved by this point on through the end of the show. Floor of the Ocean was next and sounded as good as it does on Phantom Radio if not a little more rockin and was followed by Waltzing in Blue. Miracles post about Mark saying they had only rehearsed once the day before makes it clear as to why I was just so-so about the live version, it’ll probably sound better as the tour goes on and the band has time to tighten things up.
The band rocked it up again with crowd pleasing Hit the City and played Creeping Coastline of Lights the full band song staple on every tour since 2001 🙂 I was really looking forward to finally hearing Ode to Sad Disco and it didn’t disappoint and the crowd ate it up and also Harborview Hospital which came next, a great idea to have these played together and really engage the crowd. Mark’s new song Torn Red Heart came next with an excellent guitar solo that improved on the album version. He dedicated the Screaming Trees song Black Rose Way to his good friend Van Conner, and it was totally rocked out, fans including myself loooved it.
Then we had what I’ll refer to as a “double closer” as Mark played the final song from PR and BF back to back to finish out the main set.. I loved them both, Death Trip to Tulsa was more aggressive and blistering while Tiny Grain of Truth was a trance meditation that left everyone screaming for me.
Jeff Fielder and Mark came out alone to begin the encore with 3 solo songs: an extended Bombed followed by the new songs Judgement Time and The Wild People. The band returned during I am the Wolf, and added drums and bass to the latter half, a nice addition. The set ended with a full on Methamphetamine Blues.
Afterwards, we headed to the entrance for the signing but the doorman was being a dickhead and insisted no one would be re-admitted and I had all of my merchandise in the car so we decided to just call it a night instead of waiting in line again to talk to Mark. After picking up some cigarettes we parked across the street by a hotel and waited around to see if anyone was still leaving. The front of the Neptune wasn’t lighted anymore and the doors were closed, so we drove around front and noticed a door was still cracked open so my wife told me “Go! Go”
I stood at the door a minute, pulled it open and saw Mark was still at the signing table so I walked over and only 2 people were ahead of me and so I talked to him last. I shook his hand, and he said “Hello, Christopher” with a smile. I told him I really enjoyed the show but had to sneak back in for the signing and got my copy of Phantom Radio deluxe and my The Winding Sheet poster signed in white paint pen. My wife popped in and I re-introduced her and Mark said it was nice to see her again. I asked him if maybe he was going to switch up the encores from solo songs to a more rocking one from night to night and he seemed kind of undecided and confused by it lol. I told him I knew the band had played Sad Lover earlier this year, and that I was surpised not to hear Seventh Day but he didn’t really have any answers but was glad that I enjoyed the show. He was in a really good mood at this signing but again I was the last person to see him but it was really great ending to an awesome night!