Stand on platforms in water

Taking a break from writing about Lollapalooza, last Saturday Rob and I went down to the Tweeter Center for the big indie rock show. It was the Download festival, but we were only going to see Yeah Yeah Yeahs and Modest Mouse.

I assumed that YYYs would be going on around 7, and when I assume I make an ASS out of U and ME, because as it turns out, they were scheduled to play at 6:15, which worked out perfect because we go there at 6 because there was no traffic, and the parking lot didn't seem full at all, and the venue didn't seem full at all either.

I bought the tickets last week using my new "I'll wait until press tickets have been released" system, which worked out pretty amazing because we were in the 6th row on the right and pretty much had the whole area to ourselves. As it turns out, ticket sales were so shitty apparently they were actually giving the tickets away last week.

This was my third time seeing YYYs, and while I'm no fan at all of their last record, they usually put on a pretty kick ass performance. But not last Saturday. They seemed really bored/out of it for almost the whole time. Things only picked up for the last two songs [the second to last was an aborted "Maps" that was then played acoustic instead - which was actually as amazing as it sounds]. "Maps" was the only track played from the first record. Also, we were sitting in back of the one girl in the pavilion who was in love with them. A disturbing YYYs trend I've noticed is that they are picking up a fan base along the lines of "those girls". The ones who get all weird about Tori Amos, and you just know are cutters. We wound up moving seats - she was that weird.

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Also, there was this awesome hipster and his girlfriend wearing the shortest hot pants ever that showed up for a few songs. You could see the butt!

What is Guster? Rob asked. Shitty alternative rock, I answered. We went in search of food during their set and I'd forgotten just how scary pavilion food is. We watched people filming Dating on Demand personals. Pretty much anything would have been more interesting than Guster.

Once Guster were done, we went back in to "kick the squatters out of our seats", but I am telling you it was still just an empty press section, actually. When MM came on the only person that stood up in all the rows in front was directly in front of me, but that's OK because I was going to stand up anyway.

The first half of their set was very good - very 'pavilion' friendly, "Out of Gas" was an amazing addition to the set I hadn't expected. After "Satin in a Coffin" Isaac addressed us all, it was kind of rambly but cute. Until.

With the house lights up he noticed that everyone was standing all organized, and proceeded to invite everyone down front because there was plenty of room there. He said it would be OK because they have insurance here anyway. The crowd almost held back, and I think they would have if they hadn't suddenly launched into their radio hit "Float On", which sent, well, pretty much everyone rushing forward. It was like watching bees or ants, so I watched security give a half hearted try and pushing people back, and then just resign themselves to pushing people out of the aisles. Somehow, my row remained relatively calm as most people were rushing for the coveted GA pit up front.

ALSO, remember the hipster I saw during YYYs with the girl who's ass was hanging out? It was about this time that he looked really familiar to me. I tried to match the face up, but internet message boards this AM confirms that said hipster that I secretly laughed at was actually ISAAC BROCK and his FIANCEE. KIDS! DO NOT LAUGH AT HIPSTERS, YOU MAY REALLY WANT TO STICK YOUR TONGUE DOWN THEIR THROAT!

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The only other show highlight was set closer "Spitting Venom" with a bit of "I Came As A Rat" thrown in. I was pretty disappointed at the lack of "Tiny Cities Made Of Ashes", but there was no way I was staying for the encore and sitting in traffic for 90 minutes trying to get out of the parking lot. But psyche - it didn't show up in the encore either, so I missed nothing.

Overall, it turned out to be an A++ evening at the Tweeter Center! Well, maybe more like B-. However we still cannot figure out what exactly the "Download" festival is, other than there was a lot of money spent on advertising telling me that I was at DOWNLOAD 2007!!!!!


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