Kind of weird that my second entry about a live show should be one about a tribute band.
I'll get back to the autobiographical posts when I get a chance....but the first bands I was ever in were all cover bands - this would be from 9th grade right through 12th grade. My metal band in 12th grade - Phoenix - had one original song ("Please Say Yes")...(you can all laugh - it's fine)....but I wasn't in a band that played only originals until I was a freshman in college.
As a guy who has now only been in original bands (save for the occasional cover song) - there's a part that now cringes at the idea of cover bands or - as has become quite the trend in recent years - TRIBUTE bands....a cover band that exclusively devotes itself to one single band....even often going so far as to duplicate the clothing, hair styles and even between-song banter that you would see if you actually went to see the real band themselves.
I've seen a handful of tribute bands over the years - not too many.
I saw Bad Animals a few years back - a tribute to Heart (they actually featured Mark Mendoza from Twisted Sister on bass)....some Pat Benatar tribute.....and an AC/DC tribute band.
The best tribute band I've seen (well - maybe up until now) - was The Australian Pink Floyd show.
I have very mixed feelings about seeing a band who's sole goal is to duplicate a band you are already presumably a fan of. I figure - if you're already a band and can play well - why not just write your own stuff?
The musician side of me can't help but turn my nose down to it a little bit.
However - the fan side of me can see where a tribute band can be kind of fun.
If you view a band not just as a group of specific people....but rather as an entire experience - then I suppose seeing a band duplicate Genesis' "Trick of the Tail" tour is really no different than seeing "Hamlet" in 2009....I mean - really - is it?
Does the fact that Shakespeare and his original troupe of actors are long dead bother anyone enough that they would just REFUSE to ever see Hamlet....and they would only enjoy the play by reading the script?
That seems absurd to me.
So if that seems absurd to me....I guess I really should have no problem with tribute bands.
I'm never going to see Genesis in 1976.....I'm certainly never going to see Pink Floyd again as Richard Wright is dead (his death still makes me sad)....but why should I deny myself the Pink Floyd EXPERIENCE....if it's there to be had....and had in a very high quality kind of way?
So - I went to see The Musical Box with some friends who are a part of my "hockey world" (i.e. fellow diehard Islanders fans who I hang out with in the virtual world of the Islander Mania message board - and hang out with in real life at Isles games and tailgates).
The show was at one of the BEST venues on the planet to see a show at: the legendary Westbury Music Fair.
OK - technically - the place is called The Capital One Theatre at Westbury....but to any Long Islander - the place will always & only ever be known as the Westbury Music Fair.
The Fair is a 2700-seat theater where the stage is in the middle....it's like a small indoor amphitheater. The audience is the donut and the stage is the hole.
When the full theater is being used - the stage will slowly rotate during the show so that the audience gets every angle - probably about 3 or 4 times - over the course of the show.
For the Musical Box, they closed off half the theatre - so they played to half-a-donut and the stage did not move.
The Musical Box (named for a Genesis song that was NOT played at this show) came on stage looking & dressing exactly like what I imagine Genesis actually did look like back in 1976....right down to the clothes (the white overalls with the Boston Bruins logo that Bill Bruford used to wear) & facial hair (the sort of ratty Butch Goring-esque facial hair that Phil Collins sported). I have no doubt that even the between-song banter was duplicated.
One thing I didn't realize until after the show was over was that they actually had TWO Phil Collins'...one guy up front doing the lead vocals - and another guy who played his drum parts....from my perspective - it looked like it was the same guy going back & forth between the drums & the mic - but that was not the case.
I'm bad at doing "reviews" - so I'm really not going to bother - this blog is more about my own personal experience with music and my reaction & impression - not to be a reviewer. But if you wanted to see a recreation of a Genesis show from 1976 - I'd have to think you wouldn't have been disappointed (of course - as I turned 3 in 1976, I wasn't there to witness the real thing to draw a comparison).
anyway - here was the setlist....
Dance on a Volcano
the Lamb medley: The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway/Fly on a Windshield/Carpet Crawlers
The Cinema Show
Robbery, Assault & Battery
Firth of Fifth
I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe)
It/Watcher of the Skies
Now go watch the REAL Genesis play Dance on a Volcano - live from JFK Stadium on the Three Sides Live tour - 1982.