LIVE REVIEW: Dinosaur Jr. @ The Fillmore, SF 10/10/12
A band that has toured in the ’80s, ’90s, ’00s, and now ’10s, Dinosaur Jr. is steeped in music history. Known for their loud-quiet-loud distortion and as a supporting column during grunge’s prime, Dinosaur Jr. attracted a varied mix of ages to The Fillmore last Wednesday night. Their most recent album release, I Bet On Sky, is by far their most mellowed-out and cheerful, while still retaining noisy guitars and moody vocals.
While waiting for the show to start, we eavesdropped on a couple behind us talking about the band. They were comparing stories of sneaking out of their parent’s houses in the late ’80s in order to cut curfew and see them live. This spawned a debate about R.E.M. and New Order‘s best albums, but by then J. Mascis and co. had sauntered up on-stage.
During the set, J. Mascis barely spoke at all, instead letting bassist Lou Barlow make the prototypical banter. The majority of songs were from I Bet On Sky, but they did make a special point to play “Start Choppin” off of their ’93 release, Where You Been and “Feel The Pain” off of their ’94 release Without A Sound. The crowd was revelatory, even though Mascis’ lyrics and vocal drone oozes apathy. Mascis was surrounded by a wall of Marshall’s, off of which he crunch-blasted his own wall of sound. His soaring solos felt more cathartic than imposing or kitsch, as his long, gray hair mutely head-banged along.
As someone who was still in car seats during Dinosaur Jr.’s first round touring, it was extremely awesome to be able to see them years later. They’ll be continuing their tour for another month, moving east until they hit New York City.
For more badass photos of Dinosaur Jr., click HERE.