Manchester Orchestra at The Troubadour: Kristen’s Story

So although I’m still a little sad I missed out on The Silent Comedy/Transfer night 1 at The Casbah, I am mostly just glowing over the amazing night I did have. Afterall, it involved half naked Scotsmen, mind altering music, a gift from the heavens, and an American Idol contestant.  

I went to The Troubadour to the sold out Manchestra Orchestra show. Due to typical LA traffic, I missed the first band. Thankfully, I got there in time to catch Biffy Clyro .  I was initially put off by their appearance-three heavily tattooed men on stage without shirts, but they quickly won me over with their music (and charming accents). At first, I couldn’t decide what type of music they were playing. Some of their songs were slow and melodic…and then they would bust one out so loud and pounding it felt like a metal show. Then I realized what I loved about them was their unpredictability. Even in their beats…they never took them where I expected them to go. I found myself transfixed by the novelty of it all. I immediately purchased their CD, but I have a feeling that what I witnessed transcends the confines of an audio recording.

The second band I saw, The Features , was also a bit of a paradox. Its lead singer looked like a woodsman yet would break out into this hard rock screaming. My favorite part of this band was the drummer whose deft movements on his drum kit gave the distinct impression of floating on air…a joy to watch. Their song, “Lions” sounded like something from a commercial (if not, it should be).

Manchester Orchestra started off with a folksy dedication to 50 Cent…I knew then that it was going to be an amazing set.  Manchester Orchestra is one of those bands that really know how to work the lows and the highs of a song.  They do this so well that they are somehow able to keep the audience on this perpetual high. I got so lost in the songs that I had no sense of time or space. I started floating back down to reality as they were playing their hit “I’ve Got Friends” and I realized that their set was coming to an end…and that my feet really really hurt…and that somehow in the hour or so that they played I had managed to move a good ten feet or so. Thankfully they had the presence of mind to close with a slow tune; carefully bringing us all back down to Earth.

As I was exiting the venue a piece of paper floated down from the sky above and landed at my feet (very reminiscent of the whole secret Wolfmother show incident). On one side was a large note written in sharpie that said “No More Scotch.” On the other, was the set list for the show I had just witnessed. I felt like it was God sending me a message telling me I was in the exact right place and time…or maybe to lay off the scotch (!?!).

To cap off my excellent evening I ventured to nearby Millions of Milkshakes. Turns out I was in line in front of American Idol contestant, Aaron Kelly and family who were in town for the show. I would never have known this if it weren’t for the two guys standing outside the shop who stopped me as I came out to ask me if, indeed, I was standing next to the reality show contestant. I ended up talking to his family and discovered that some of them are from a town very close to where I grew up! Suddenly I felt oddly compelled to participate in the American Idol voting…I went home and immediately watched this week’s episode.

-The End-

~ Kristen

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