5th Avenue Theatre, Seattle, WA
Tuesday, 15 September 1998
With Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds
This is only the third time in my life that I have played rock journalist, so excuse my amateur-ity.
I showed up early to the show (as usual) and could hear our band practicing. Unfortunately, we couldn't enter the seating area at that time. I could hear them quite clearly, and while they played "Be There" and "Over the Ocean," I let it sink in that this was the first time I had ever heard Low live. It was great. The first two songs they did, "Lord, Can You Hear Me?" and "Immune," I had never heard before, and were pleasant surprises. Though "Immune" did sound vaguely familiar. Since they were the opening band, I expected the worst. I expected people to yell at the stage, to boo and hiss. But I think I only heard one boo, and that was toward the end of the set, and I could have misheard. Maybe it was request. Though the crowd wasn't completely polite. There was a near constant chatter level throughout the show, and the girl behind me had the gall to ask me a question, right into my mic, at the beginning of "Immune." I was glad that only half the people showed up for Low, because if there were any more, it would have been too noisy.
One thing that struck me during the show was the emotion that Low played with. Even more emotion was evident in their live show than in their studio recordings. I can't pick out one performance of the night that excelled above the rest, each song was played with equal emotional concern. I heard one request for "Words" which was ignored, or not heard by the band. And I have heard that most of the time Low takes requests at their shows, but they didn't at this one. I assume that this was due to time constraints. I was fine by that, the set was great.
Nick Cave's performance was quite different from Low's, which leads me to wonder how Low got hooked up with Cave. My guess is it is because they both have connections with the Dirty Three.
Low's performance was very satisfying, and I look forward to seeing them again hopefully in the near future. And hopefully this time with a more attentive audience.
I did tape the show, though it is rather quiet and there is background noise consisitent throughout the set. I taped it onto a minidisc, if you would like a copy contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am giving somebody else a minidisc copy of it. I will be unavailable in a few months for quite a while, so I will check with this person to see if he would like to be listed as the owner of the tape while I am gone. And keep your eyes peeled for another copy of the show, I would like to see if anybody else was able to get a better recording.