Counting Crows + Twin Forks @ Metropolis

Friday, May 15, 2015 - Presented by Evenko

I'm the Metal Director at CJLO, so you might be asking what I'd be doing reviewing a Counting Crows show. Well, long story short, my friend asked the Magazine Editor if they could get tickets, and they ended up not being able to go, so I had to take the tickets from him. It really doesn't matter who this friend was—we'll call him "A. Wieler"... wait, no, let me try again... "Andrew W"—suffice it to say that it wasn't me who asked for these tickets, because that would be lame, and as Metal Director I couldn't very well ask for tickets to go see a '90s radio-friendly close to adult contemporary band like the Counting Crows, even if their first album, August and Everything After, was great. Even if two albums later, for This Desert Life, they made another fantastic record, and even if the new album, Somewhere Under Wonderland, is pretty solid for the first half or so. So, to be incredibly clear, I did not intentionally ask for tickets to see this band mere days after it being announced. 

Editor's Note: Andrew did in fact ask for tickets the week after this concert was announced.

So now that this bit of unpleasantness and clarification is out of the way, let's talk about this show, which again, I was forced to go to.

I arrived at the show at 8:15. The show was set to start at 8, so I thought I'd have ample time to walk up to the balcony at Metropolis and enjoy some good old fashioned sittin'. However, to my wonder and amazement the place was PACKED. Upstairs, downstairs, it didn't matter. There were people everywhere, which I couldn't fathom based on the fact that a) tickets to the show were 60 goddamn dollars, and b) this band was very popular in the '90s. It became clear that most of these people were probably going to their "one show a year" that I suppose everyone who used to see bands gets to at some point in their life based on the fact that no one really seemed clear as to how to act at a concert. For instance, you don't just shove your way through people like you're a bulldozer; you're supposed to use a bit of courtesy, whether it's to move slowly or, heaven forbid, politely ask someone to move.

Anyway... the first band, Twin Forks, are a folk band from Boca Raton, Florida. If you like Mumford and Sons, you would probably like this. What I didn't realize about this band was that the lead singer is Chris Carrabba from Dashboard Confessional. Of course, *scoff* I don't like that band either because all the music I like is totally legit and a guy with a guitar that sings about heartbreak is so totally not something I would listen to. My thoughts watching the band went in this order: "this is what The Gaslight Anthem would sound like if they lost they're balls," followed by, "Where are all the mason jars full of vegetables they decided to pickle to go along with the rest of their hipster lifestyle?" I guess looking back it makes sense (in the form of inoffensive folk that they make) that they'd look like they did, and musically they seemed to know how to handle their instruments, but ultimately it left a lot to be desired.

Also, the crowd, who again had no idea how to act, literally had hundreds of conversations over the band while they tried to play. They were basically a glorified bar band for their set, which they took amazingly in stride, and I respect them greatly for.

After that, the Counting Crows came on stage. Adam Duritz came out and started chewing one of five sticks of gum that he'd continually be chomping on through the whole show. They played the biggest hits, including "Mr. Jones", relatively early I might add, and "A Long December", as well as a huge amount off of the new album, Somewhere Under Wonderland. What I failed to realize is how hard Adam makes it to sing along to songs, you know, if you're not someone totally legit and cool like me who would never know all the words to "Mr. Jones" since that would be totally lame. He sings all of the songs differently than on the albums, which I guess to be fair, if you had to sing "A Long December" every tour date since it hit big in 1996, wouldn't you want to do something to make it somewhat interesting?

All in all, between seven band members, nine different instruments, and two hours of solid songs, the show was pretty good. I left feeling pretty happy that I had requested ticket... I mean that my friend couldn't go or whatever I previously said above. Anyway, if it comes by you, I can't tell you if it's 60 dollars good, but it's not not 60 dollars good either.


--Andrew Wieler's friend hosts Grade A Explosives, every Sunday at 4 PM on CJLO. You should tune in, because, let's face it, what else is there to do?