Well, rather than do 3 seperate reviews, basically cos I can't be bothered, and partly cos there wasn't a great deal of difference between the gigs, here's my little summary of the gigs I saw on the Korn / Urge / Incubus UK tour. Be warned, this is probably a long, and quite crap, read.
First thing to do is complain. Why was everywhere, messed up with getting people in. I've seen enough bands at all the places to know you can normally turn up and go straight in. this time, despite doors supposedly opening at 7 at each venue, the queues were ridiculous still at 7.30 or 7.45 when Incubus were due to start.
But to the gigs. And first up were Incubus. A young 5 piece who musically remind me A LOT of early Mr Bungle, circa the demo days, and especially the OU818 days, when they still did songs without extending them past their lifetime, or basically loosing the plot as, to me, they did on Disco Volante. So that means to say Incubus serve up a mish mash of styles, ranging from raging metal(ish), through funky Chilli Peppers style, jazzy etc. You know the score. But they manage to add some extra elements with the addition of a DJ and Brandon's extra percussive excursions. The debut EP, Enjoy Incubus, will skillfully be released once the tour is finished, nice going eh record company, but people should recognise a few tracks from the gigs, especially Version and Shaft. But why didn't they play 'You will be a hot dancer'. Anyway, they got a better response than I was anticipating, so that's a good sign. It seemed to take Brandon a couple of songs to get into it totally each night, but when they did, they're a band to watch out for in the coming months, that is, if you can take a little bit of variety in your music.
Variety is different again for the Urge. Coming on as the most communicative of the 3 bands, thanks largely to vocalist Steve Ewing, this is a band that brings to mind Fishbone, maybe at their best. 3 guys with horns are sometimes on the left of the stage, though if their not playing anything, they are to be found either headbanging or doing a near enough mosh kind of dance onstage. Whatever, visually they are an exciting band to watch. Brainless, Drunken Asshole, Open all hours, a good bunch of tracks from the debut album, Receiving the Gift of Flavor, are played, and although they probably get the worst response of the night, there should be some encouragement for the band. After all, they are asking people to look past both colour of skin and usual musical pigeonholes. Sure, in these enlightened times where people are 'so much more receptive', to new material, that should be easy. However, the realities are still that most of the 'challenging' music that people come to like, they come to like cos it is spoonfed to them by the media. Anything that challenges the stereotypes outside of this, is still received with caution. Which may go some way to explaining the behaviour in Leeds.
Why do the people there throw empty beer glasses at the bands so much. I mean, as soon as the Urge came on last night, people next to me saw the trombones and decided to throw their beer glasses. Why? Too narrow minded to even listen. If you don't like a band fine, but at least give them the chance. The band hadn't even played a note when some people had already decided they didn't like them. Hopefully though they managed to win a few people over. See, if people were as truly receptive as they would like to claim, they would've at least listened before passing judgement, unforutnately, they don't. Wankers one and all. Anyway, All Messed Up and Getting Hectic finish the shows, and Ewing is a brave man by actually trying to encourage people to sing or shout along during Getting Hectic. Or maybe just perceptive. Challenge people and they usually loose their convictions and conform to the masses.
Overall though, both Incubus and the Urge helped make for a varied and interesting bill. One of the better support slots we've been able to see.
Korn then are one of the most eagerly anticipated bands of the moment. Which is good, although personally I find Life Is Peachy a slight disappointment in comparison to the debut. There is some good stuff, but there is some stuff that still washes over me. Live however, the tracks seem to make more sense and fit things better. Strange how that happens to so many bands.
The Tasmanian Devil like Twist opens things, before the band lurch into blind, and the crowds each night seem to loose all kinds of sense. It has to be said that the reaction at Wolverhampton was probably best of the lot, and one of the most unified outbreaks of pogoing I've ever seen/been involved in. Basically, you had no choice. Literally the entire place was doing it, although casualities soon started making towards water.
Even though I saw them a few times, I can't remember the exact running order, but you get Chi, Clown, Need To, Lost, Mr Rogers Good God, ADIDAS, No Place TO Hide, LowRider / Shoots and Ladders, Swallow, Ball Tongue, Kill You and Fagget. I think that was it. A few extra visuals with video being projected behind the band for some songs, accompannied by suitably 'atmospheric' music from the band. Everyone seems to be getting off on it, and the seem to be tight. As ever, Jonathon doesn't actually say a word to the crowd during the entire set, and that, I guess, along with the everything being exact is the one downer. Or it is if you seem them a few nights running, because everything seems the same. Sometimes you look for the spontanaeity, but there doesn't seem to be it. The band stands stock still in silence after Jon sings 'to come out' in Clown. Jon indicates for more noise from the crowds at the same point and with the same gestures while playing the bagpipes for lowrider / shoots and ladders. Ok, granted, he's restricted in movement there. But you just wonder how many times they can do it without getting a little bored. As I said, it's all impressive, and well played, but they're getting so much press and hype at the moment that I guess I'm looking for that extra something. Maybe unfair of me, yeah, maybe. Good gigs, but not quite as great as Liverpool was last year, in a small club just after their Donington appearance.
The band are going strong, and from stength to strength in everyones eyes. Just hope they don't loose interest or burn out with everything. Still, all in all, three good gigs.
And my final peeve, is reserved unfortunately for Leeds. A place I lived for a year and have seen a number of bands at. Going back to the intolerance shown for the Urge. This culminates with empty plastic beer glasses being thrown. But more than that, why did they persist when Korn came on. Sheesh, I mean, they've paid money to see the band, and then they do the best to piss them off. And yet if they'd walked off stage, who would be the first to moan about it. It got to the point that during 'kill you' Munky got hit twice I think and threw the stuff back. He was visibly pissed off. Rightly in my opinion. So finally the security actually came and tracked down at least one person responsible and kicked him out. Yet a few more glasses were still thrown. when the band walked off at the end of Fagget, it was obvious in munky's reaction he was pissed off. I think he threw a few things back then. Only then did people go, 'oooh, he really is angry'. Wow really! I mean, what do you expect. Problem is, it's happened at that venue too many times. To both the Urge and Korn, sorry for the place having a few wankers.