...at the Great American Music Hall, San Francisco, CA, March 21st, 2008
It's okay to cry at a concert, right? If you've been so moved by the music spilled forth from the PA system, and your emotions become so entangled up in with the music, I'm going to say it's okay.
Now I wasn't bawling or anything, it was a barely visible tear that rolled out of the corner of my eye, but it did register its presence on my cheek during The Only Moment We Were Alone, during the encore last night. It's been a long time since I've been hit with a tears-of-joy moment, and I have no shame disclosing this fact. Seems as if Explosions and Sigur Ros are the only bands who can do this to me.
And it's been a good five years since I've eaten ecstasy, but I experienced more than enough moments last night that brought me that old feeling of absolute soul-warming, the pins and needles up my spine, hairs on end, uncontrollable smiles and that general sense of well-being produced by MDMA.
But music was my drug last night, and Austin, Texas' Explosions In The Sky were the dealer...
First Breath After Coma
Six Days At The Bottom Of The Ocean
The Birth And Death Of The Day
Your Hand In Mine
The Only Moment We Were Alone
Seven songs, all perfectly segued into the next, all in about an hour-and-a-half. This was one of the most amazing concert experiences of my life, and conservative estimates put that total somewhere in the neighborhood of about 300.
I wish I knew the exact number of shows I've attended, but I'm going on the formula of 20 concerts a year for the last fifteen, so give or take a few here and there I'm saying I've been to about 300 shows. I may have a problem...
Anyway, my relationship with Explosions' music has been one of a highly spiritual nature, an on-going religious experience of sorts, if you will allow that term to enter into your consciousness. I wake up to them, fall asleep to them, read to them, watch the sun set to them, etc. I don't necessarily follow any one religion, I take the best parts of the ones I like and make them my own. So in that regard, I tend to place a high value on music because of the places it's taken me.
Like life, there's a certain degree of tension, terror, beauty, quietude, and both strength and power in Explosions In The Sky's music. There's a lot to be said of a band that can squeeze more raw emotion out of their art without using words to express these sentiments.
Slow building crescendos coupled with pure moments of release, soft and beautiful arpeggiated passages into quiet with a sudden burst of static, if you've never listened to these guys, do yourself a favor and watch this (it's nine-and-a-half minutes, so go get a soda or something):
The Only Moment We Were Alone
Thank you, Explosions In The Sky. And thank you, readers of The Musicologists...
I apologize for the pictures, my entire roll got messed up somehow, so I have two for ya and they're psychedelic as all hell, thanks Photobucket.