Sunday, February 25, 2007

Everything Is Wonderful Now

Everclear - Washington, DC - 9:30 Club - 2/24/07

I just got home from the Everclear show at my favorite indoor venue, the 9:30 Club. In front of a near capacity audience with an average age of around 30 years old, singer Art Alexakis, the only remaining original member of the group, led the band through a number of the hits that I was eagerly anticipating hearing live for the first time. My interest in Everclear peaked after purchasing their Greatest Hits collection from a used record store in VA three years ago. Listening to that CD, I was brought back to a set of songs that were incredibly familiar, as I had heard them played endlessly on rock radio from 1995 - 1998. I hadn't heard them in years but I was reminded that I really did like this band. With some of the most personal, honest, angst-ridden lyrics of any artist around that time, Alexakis captured in song his struggles with an absent father, his drug addiction, and living in poverty. That honesty, along with some catchy pop songs, is what drew me to the band and is the reason I still play those Greatest Hits from my iTunes library today.

This was far from the best concert I've heard musically, but fortunately no one was there to be blown away by the skill level of the players. People came to hear the hits that they'd heard so many times coming out of their radios in years past. And for this reason, the band delivered. With the boys running through "Santa Monica", "Father Of Mine", "I Will Buy You A New Life", "Everything to Everyone", and "Wonderful" the crowd nodded their heads, sang along, and pumped their fists with smiles on their faces.

I have no reason to go see Everclear in concert again. My mission was accomplished. Taking the opportunity to witness songs performed live that remind me of past days driving in my car, listening to WHFS or 98Rock, was entirely worth it.

Spending 3 weeks in the #1 spot on the rock radio charts in 1995, here is the band's "Santa Monica".

We can live beside the ocean
Leave the fire behind
Swim out past the breakers
Watch the world die

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