Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Who Live At the Palace at Auburn Hills

Yeah. I can't even think of words enough to describe last night's show. Let's say this, I've been to quite a few shows in my lifetime, none of them even came close to the raw power, energy, and musical prowess of the Who (even minus two members!!).

The night kicked off with a fantastic little band from Canada called Inward Eye. The way I saw them was Green Day form twenty years ago when they were still playing small clubs in the East Bay, with more pop sensibilities, and just a little hint of rockabilly. In other words, they were freakin' fantastic. They had great energy onstage, and it was aparent to everyone that they were the time of their lives. The one thing that impressed me most about Inward Eye was the unbelievably mad skills their drummer had. If Keith Moon and Matt Helders (of Arctic Monkeys fame) had a baby, it would be this dude. He had some of the msot complex drum beats i've ever seen someone hammer out, and at the same time, he looked like he was having fun doing it. The best part(s) of their show was not once, not twice, but four times when the drummer broke his sticks. This may seem like a boring thing, but let me explain, you would hear the stick crack and then the next second it would go flying in the air as he discarded it. The amazing part was that he never missed a beat though! He'd be going full tilt, break a stick, and have another in his hand in an instant. Brilliant!

So after a great opening act, I was a little wary of how the rest of the night would play out. I had my doubts as to what Roger's vocal abilities would be for the majority of the songs. Every single one of those doubts was put to rest the seond they stepped onstage. Roger, looking classy as always with a white button down and a vest; and Pete with his sunglasses on looking cool as hell! He wasted no time time leading the band with the hard, crunching first chords of "Can't Explain". And it just got better from there. They tore through nearly two and a half hours of rock the way it should be, loud as hell. The set consisted mostly of their well known songs, but they threw a few curveballs in there, and it definitely worked in their favor. The highlight of the show for me was hearing "5:15" (my dad's favorite Who song) right into "Love Reign O'er Me" (my favorite Who song). Roger absolutely slayed the vocals on "Love", the likes of which I've never heard before. It was at that point that I believed beyond a shadow of a doubt that he can sing 99% as well as he could thirty years ago. Throughout the whole show Pete kept the audience laughing with his sharp British wit. Even proclaiming at one point, "I'm Ozzy Ozbourne! Prince of Darkness!". Overall, no one in that arena could've asked for more, we came expecting to be blown away, and at ages 63 and 64, Roger and Pete, respectively, rocked the roof off The Palace.

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