Concert review: My Morning Jacket at the Pinewood Bowl, Lincoln, NE – August 7, 2012
Holdin’ On To Black Metal
Picture Of You
You Wanna Freak Out
Wonderful (The Way I Feel) (with Ben Bridwell from Band of Horses)
Off the Record
Smokin’ From Shootin’
Touch Me I’m Going to Scream Pt. 2
Encore: Victory Dance, Wordless Chorus, One Big Holiday
For our review of the My Morning Jacket tour on August 6th, 2012 in Kansas City please click here: My Morning Jacket in Kansas City
Night two of our tour that is the brilliance of My Morning Jacket dropped into the steamy hot Pinewood Bowl in Lincoln, NE. Delivering a longer set (due to one less opening band) than the night prior in Kansas City allowed MMJ the additional time they prefer to stretch out their catalog with obscure album tracks. A two hour show like that in Kansas City is simply a brief stroll for this rock and roll machine. With a track listing that was about 80% different than the night before, My Morning Jacket is the steam train leading the charge by other major bands (i.e., Pearl Jam) that change their setlist significantly from night to night. Amen to that. It keeps the band fresh and the fans on their toes. The Curation series spearheaded by MMJ which allows fans to help choose the upcoming setlist is a dream come true that is actually working.
My Morning Jacket, quite frankly, just gets it – where as so many other bands just don’t. They work their asses off to get where they are and due to that effort they have no equal peer really. Take one peak at their stage show and how they deliver their material as the last 10 years have progressed. They’ve morphed from being a band with a bright future to a band that is remarkably likable, prolific and intensely true and genuine to their fan base. How many excellent bands have we seen in years past that twisted themselves into knots with either drugs, a lack of effort, crappy new material or simply not giving a shit about the fans? My Morning Jacket rises above all that and is setting the template before our eyes of what it takes to kick ass, take some names along the way, and do it with pure joy. Every new live band in the world right now (of which there are many stunning, excellent ones) are in the footsteps of Jim James, Carl Broemel and MMJ.
The backdrop at the Pinewood Bowl set My Morning Jacket into another slightly surreal setting as the strobe lights on the stage eerily lit the trees in the background as the band pounded away. One look at the trees and you were waiting for Jack Nicholson from The Shining to step onstage with his axe – it just had that aura as the wind occasionally blew all the steam on the stage back into the trees. At a glance they looked like the trees of the amazon jungle back there, but nope, it’s just Lincoln, NE. MMJ continue to do everything right; the cool trees, the relationship with the fans, their devotion to their live show, the positive treatment of fan club members and the amenities (i.e., the $40 purchase option to receive an official concert poster and sit in the front 2 rows to see My Morning Jacket perform 3-4 songs during a soundcheck is a small slice of heaven). Can’t they ever screw up and become normal, or simply merely mortal? Aren’t they due to go on Oprah and jump up and down on the couch because they love some woman? What I believe strongly is that seeing My Morning Jacket right now is simply that defining moment for the band – a band at the absolute peak of its internal and external powers (like seeing the Rolling Stones or Led Zeppelin in 1972). 18 years from now younger fans will go see them play and tell us afterwards how great the show was and we’ll shrug our shoulders and all be like, “yeah, but I saw them in 2012.”. And the younger fan will just have to wonder what it was like. It doesn’t get much better than this, but the scary part is that it just might.