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SOUNDGARDEN Rocking the LA FORUM July 22, 2011


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When I first wrote about the show, there weren't any good clips up on youtube yet...but now, there are. As I said before, Jerry Cantrell, Dave Grohl, and tons of others(Red Hot Chili Peppers of course-John's a big Mars Volta fan and has played with them many times) were at the concert. Randy Johnson, former pitching great, was taking photos all over the place...and according to my brothers, he likes to sell metal boots at swap meets.

Mike McCready from Pearl Jam joined Soundgarden on "Superunknown":

My favourite of the night, though, was when before "Superunknown", they played my all-time favourite Soundgarden track, "Head Down", which they haven't been playing regularly on this reunion tour.

And yes, the rumours you heard are true...Dave Grohl was in the pit, no security, no entourage, nobody but himself rocking out and supporting his buddies in SG:


I'm including my previous review, because though I posted it in Wolfman's Philly thread, the LA Forum show was awesome enough to deserve its own thread.

Why do I live in Los Angeles? Well, last night was just one of many reasons why.

Sorry Wolfman, I'm afraid L.A. got the best of Philly last night...hell, us lucky sods in Los Angeles might have got the best show of the whole tour.

The Soundgarden/Mars Volta tour hit the Fabulous Forum in Inglewood(LA) last night(July 22, 2011) and it was packed, the sound was loud, and there were notables everywhere you looked.

I was lucky to have floor fix, which was a giant general admission pit. Mars Volta opened up and played mostly new stuff I've never heard before. To be honest, I haven't really kept up with the Mars Volta since "Amputechture"...I was kind of bummed when Jon Theodore and Ikey left...but last night, I was reminded of the maelstrom of sight-and-sound Omar, Cedric and the boys can whip up. Cedric has some INTERESTING dance moves, to say the least, and Omar has always been a bad-ass guitar player, although his amps are so loud sometimes, he can occasionally overwhelm the rest of the band. Their setlist as best as I could figure it was as follows:

1. Aegis

2. The Whip Hands

3. Molochwalk

4. Dyslexicon

5. Broken English Jam

6. Goliath

Now on to the main event...Soundgarden. I've always liked Soundgarden on record, but in concert they could be hit-and-miss. First off, they weren't the most pleasant looking dudes on stage...they always had a surly, sour-puss vibe. And when they grew out of the club circuit, and on to the bigger stages, they could seem remote and distant, hardly moving about...a far cry from the wildness projected by the cover shot of Chris on "Louder Than Love".

Then, the last time I saw Soundgarden, headlining Universal Amphitheatre in 1996 on the Down on the Upside tour(with Rocket from the Crypt opening...remember THEM?), Chris' voice was shot, hardly reaching the highs I had seen him reach on earlier tours. The band hardly interacted on stage, so I wasn't surprised when they broke up.

After the mediocrity of his solo and Audioslave years, I wasn't too enthused about this Soundgarden show, to be honest. I went more out of curiosity than for nostalgia's sake. Well, against all odds, I was pretty impressed by last night's show. Chris' voice still isn't near its peak of the 80s-early 90s, but the band's vibe is much better and they made more of an effort to engage the crowd. Plus, it's cool to see Chris with LONG HAIR again! It was loud and the crowd was into it, moshing like it was the old days again. I worked up a good sweat myself, losing two of my companions in the process.

A pretty killer setlist...I could have done without "Spoonman"; never liked that song, but at least they got it out of the way early. For me the night took off with "Jesus Christ Pose", with that killer opening storm of riffs. Hell, they even broke out "Loud Love" and "Big Dumb Sex" from the early days!

Best of all, unlike you suckers in Philly, Wolfy, LA got MY FAVOURITE SOUNDGARDEN SONG: "HEAD DOWN"!!! Far-freaking-OUT! But then, as if to say "you haven't seen nothin' yet!", they had Mike McCready of Pearl Jam come out and join them on "Superunknown". LA got 25 songs, 3 more than Philly.

All this while Dave Grohl was moshing in the pit, baseball hall-of-famer Randy Johnson was taking photos, and Jerry Cantrell, a couple of Lakers, and too many famous musicians to count were taking in the show. Hell, I bet Jack Nicholson and Bill Walton were somewhere in the house...it's the rare Forum concert that I DON'T see them. The Forum VIP club was hosting a birthday party for Chris Cornell afterwards, but I didn't have enough juice to get into that.

Obviously, the Seattle shows will be off-the-hook, but they're going to have to be really special to top the LA Forum gig. I just hope the cameras were rolling last night...they should put the whole show out on DVD.

Here's the setlist for Soundgarden...read it and weep, Wolfman.

1. Searching With My Good Eye Closed

2. Spoonman

3. Gun

4. Jesus Christ Pose

5. Room a Thousand Years Wide

6. Blow Up the Outside World

7. Loud Love

8. Big Dumb Sex

9. Ugly Truth

10. Fell on Black Days

11. Flower

12. Outshined

13. Black Rain

14. Rusty Cage

15. The Day I Tried to Live

16. My Wave

17. Burden in My Hand

18. Black Hole Sun

19. Head Down

20. Superunknown (with Mike McCready)

21. 4th of July


22. Beyond the Wheel

23. Hunted Down

24. Mailman

25. Slaves & Bulldozers

Close to 2 and 1/2 hours of Soundgarden.

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This is when the night really started cooking...Jesus Christ Pose:

Black Hole Sun:

The Day I Tried to Live:

I've got to run...I'll try to post more another time.

Frankly, I'm surprised there hasn't been more interest/discussion of the Soundgraden tour here...along with Jane's Addiction, they were the two bands that came closest to that Led Zeppelin sound/vibe.

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Sounds like an EPIC show, Strider! I saw them open for Guns back in '91. Grohl is unbelievably cool, probably my favorite current rock musician. He is so down to earth. FYI, John is not in RHCP anymore. Oh well....


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soundgarden is such a great band, so great to see them back together again, was listening to -superunknown and was super keen on the ambient sounds goin on in that song, just sayin, just like the intro of misty mountain hop in 07, after jpjs keys, jasons drums are like drum/guitars.

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i was listening to -temple of the dog today and was thinking how the song -reach down, sounded kind of like -the firm, but after the solo and second part of that 11 min song, its more concrete/heavy sounding like soundgarden was.

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