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Silversun Pickups and Viva Voce at Jackpot Saloon

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06_1006-silversun-p-36770.jpgI’m coming off an amazing homecoming weekend in Lawrence, KS. My friends were in town from all over the country, the weather was beautiful, and everywhere I went had plenty of alcohol. Friday night, I got a chance to see the Silversun Pickups / Viva Voce show, and it turned out to be a great way to start the weekend.

Although they just left the familiar West Coast where they play venues of 600+, Silversun and Viva Voce were looking forward to their stops through the Midwest, even though it meant playing venues where maybe only 200 people would see them. The bands enjoy the opportunity to play for their fans anywhere and maybe even gain some new fans along the way. With the way both bands played on Friday night, they will definitely have some new fans.

Silversun Pickups have been talked about a lot lately. The have been mentioned everywhere from Filter Magazine to MTV, and I’m sure the 150 people that turned out for their set on Friday night will be talking about them for awhile. They got the attention of the Jackpot Saloon about half-way through the very first song of their set, “Comeback Kid.” Brian and Nikki played the repetitive bass / guitar line just before the chorus, then the drummer, Christopher, leapt from his stool to hit the crash cymbal that was set about 5 feet off the ground. Then Brian started wailing on the guitar. From that point on, the crowd was theirs.

sspu33.jpg The highlight of the show was the second to last song, “Lazy Eye” which ended in a deafening wall of sound. Brian used this time to satisfy his inner rock-star. He walked over the monitors to the front of the stage, knelt in front the crowd that he had owned for the past 7 songs, and began to beat and shake his guitar. At the end of the song he looked up at the enthralled crowd and just smiled as if to say, “How about THAT.” Unfortunately they only played one more song, but 8 songs were all they needed to prove that they deserve the all the praise they’ve received.

I was lucky enough to hang out with Christopher for awhile after the show. While I talked to him, he was approached by some adoring fans. One fan, offered to find him some girls – which he declined. Another fan brought him a slice of pizza – which he accepted. We talked about driving around town to find a homecoming party at which he could have an “Almost Famous” moment and yell from the roof, “I love music.” Unfortunately we never made it to a party because the tour was staying in Kansas City, but we did chat while watching Viva Voce’s set. We talked about their recent success and some of his influences, which include The Secret Machine’s Josh Garza. The band is looking forward to the rest of the tour and a show in December when they’ll be on the bill with The Shins, Modest Mouse, The Raconteurs, and The Killers.

06_1006-viva-voce-36920-band.jpgViva Voce’s set was equally impressive and they also earned the respect of the audience quickly. They had everyone locked in all the through the set that ended with a favorite of mine, “We Do Not F**k Around.” At the bar someone turned to me and said, “These guys are really good!” Yes, they are. They have such a range of sounds that I was worried if they would be good live. They actually sounded BETTER live. Many people there were not familiar with Viva Voce, but after the show there was a line to purchase their cd at the merch table. I even re-visited their cd as soon as I got in my car. I look forward to them coming back through Kansas or Missouri soon. Anyone not familiar with them should run out and listen to their new disc, “Get Yr Blood Sucked Out.”

Make sure you keep up with the rest of the tour through Filter Magazine’s Tourzine. Throughout the tour, they will have bloggers posting on the shows, and the bands posting stories from the road.

Thanks to Todd Zimmer for the photos!

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October 9, 2006 - Posted by | Live, Silversun Pickups, Support These Venues!, Viva Voce

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