Amigo Bread and I headed to the *exclusive* sold-out Tragically Hip show at the Commodore Ballroom on Granville St. downtown Vancouver last night.
This expansive 2nd floor venue is classic and fantastic – not “oversold” so you can actually move around and the crowd was thankfully mostly devoid of drunken yahoos with backwards baseball caps – well maybe not but too bad at all – decent music fans and plenty of hockey sweaters to be sure.
The Commodore boasts several vantage points to enjoy – balcony, couch lounge, bar stools, cocktail tables, private booths, and a famous floor – which is the best place to roast big doobie (which we did udring “Blow at High Dough”) and enjoy the fresh-ish air with no cigarettes (!) – both the lights (inventive but not overbearing) and the sound was outstanding (you could reallly tell the two guitars apart).
The band though, whoa dude, brung it – no longer upstart bar rockers – The Hip are now a squad of veteran rockers who seem to be realizing there enduring place in Canadian rock history and are working hard together to create quality music and offer a great experience to the attendees. “Ahead by a Century” was a high-light – the rather gentle tune really spread wings like a soaring falcon flying over the Tigris and Euphrates .
As an aside, the band seem like 5 very different guys that probably don’t hang out much off tour – that’s just my hunch – but know that the group snyergy and magic mojo just happen “all the time” so one must be grateful to find collaborators with chemistry.
Here’s a snapshot by Canadian Hobo – seems to be from the Monday night show but either way, the Downie’s shirt was uhhh sweaty – BTW, they sell his cool post-Maoist-style cap for $30 (gift idea for uncle weed!)
The Hip are hip to amateur recording and such so extensive material abounds and the band release live tracks and other gems via TheHip.com plus have their own Flickr sets and encourage participation in a Hip Photo Group – more content from passionate bloggers is at Hip Fans and live shows are archived by fans at HipBase.
Bread shot some neat vid clips and snapped photos and me recorded some snippets of sound (“swim to daddy baby”) which may or may not be usable.
Either way, the evening’s progress from the New Amsterdam was documentented including reading from Gord’s poetry book, “Coke Machine Glow” – follow the Choogle on with Uncle Weed podcast feed (Feed – iTunes – Blog) so ya don’t miss out.
By the way, is it usual for the two major (competitive) rock radio stations (CFOX, CFMI in this case) to co-produce/promote a concert together? Curious.