Review

AVALON BALLROOM

I started to get into them just after Sweet Oblivion came out–now I think they rock! When I found out they were going to start their summer tour in Boston I lost it. I am not sure if I will be able to see them at Lolla because they aren’t playing anywhere close except for Vermont. If I can I might try to see them again in Vermont–it’s worth a try.

Any how I saw them Tuesday night at the Avalon Ballroom. It holds about 1,500 people but I don’t think there were near that many people which was fine with me–I was just there to see them nothing else. Salt opened up for them but I only caught the second half of the second set, but what I heard was excellent.

I will try to list all of the songs they played but this is from memorization and a night of drinking doesn’t help. I will try to list in order but I doubt they are. I know they opened up with “Before We Rise”–I couldn’t believe it–I thought for sure they would come out with some fast and hard. Then I think they played “Butterfly.” From here I will just list the songs: Dollar Bill, Winter Song, Troubled Times, Julie Paradise, Bed of Roses, Where the Twain Shall Meet, Shadow of the Season (song rocked) and Nearly Lost You. They only played three new songs off of Dust:
Gospel Plow, Halo of Ashes and All I Know.
I think they also played E.S.K. and I am pretty sure they finished up with an older song I didn’t recognize..

snbMark Lanegan sounded great–he didn’t get into as much as I hoped but Iguess that’s the way he is. He must have smoked a pack a cigarettes in about an hour. Gary Lee was way into it he kept jumping around and doing his Curly imitation on the stage– he sounded great. At the very end of the show he took his guitar and started rubbing it against the microphone stand to make some pretty freaky noises. Van was into it too, but not as much as Gary Lee. The drummer, I think his name is Barrett Martin, also played very well. He was throwing his sticks about twenty feet into the air right in the middle of a lot of songs catching them and playing like nothing happened. One other thing I noticed was that they picked up another rhythm guitarist–some guy from Kyuss–but he was not there. I wonder if he will meet up with them further down the road.

I wish I could have given you a more accurate song list but again it is from memorization and a cloudy one at that. If in the future anyone wants to correct it, I would be psyched. I think you picked a perfect time to put together a page–right before their album comes out. I can’t wait. I think they will get the respect and recognition that they deserve. Lolla won’t hurt either. If you have any questions or comments let me know. If you hear anything else about other shows Iwould like to hear them also.

Erik Keller
JUNE 12, 1996 AT THE TROCADERO PHILADELPHIA, PA

3lb Thrill, Salt, SCREAMING TREES We all jumped in the car. Drove to Philly and parked two blocks from the Troc. The day had been cloudy and there was a thunder storm watch until 8PM that night. As we walked the two block distance to the venue, the rain came down lightly but the evening was still warm and pleasant. As we got closer, we could see a fairly long line out the door and a gentleman of good stature frisking everybody.

We stood in line and the rain came down harder and harder until everybody was standing pressed against the wall to shield themselves with the overhang. I had worn a pretty redsundress and I remember how wonderful the rain felt against my skin. Warm and wet, but soothing.The line moved pretty fast so we got our reserved ducats, got our stub and then walked in the door. I had never been to the Troc, nor had I ever seen the Trees live, so all was a new experience for me!

I remember standing in the vestibule with wide-eyed wonder at how unique the place was.I had heard it was originally built to be an Opera House, moved on to Vaudeville, then to Burlesque style showings. All five of us walked upstairs, got beers, and sat on the seats. The seats themselves were gradating steps with cushioning. They provided a PERFECT view of the stage and enough room to relax. “Pretty kewl”, I thought…

There were probably about 20 people upstairs, at first, and about 10 or so downstairs. Not many, as far as I could tell. I assumed that most people were waiting to come and see the Trees, not the opening bands. But, I wanted to see everything and everybody.

3lb Thrill came out and did a fairly decent set. They received a warm response from the scattered crowd and sounded good. I remember thinking, as everyone was clapping after each song, of how happy the crowd and the whole atmosphere of the place was. Very calm and very accepting. I was having a good time. After 3lb Thrill signed off with their last song, Salt came out. Salt’slead singer rocked through each song and the rest of the band was nice and tight. They sounded great. Their music was much harder and head knocking than 3lb Thrill and I could see the thickening crowd nodding their heads with the music and getting excited. The place was really starting to fill up and you could see people gathering closer and closer to the stage. There was even a photographer set up, front row, center. Salt’s stage layout was very raw and basic. Guitar, bass, Pearl drum set. They were actually set up in front of the Trees equipment since they took so little room. It added a nice touch, I thought. Nothing fancy, just music. “Pretty kewl”, I said again.

When we were waiting for the Trees to come on, the floor and the balcony filled up pretty fast. Everybody was rubbernecking to see what was going on and the excitement was building fast. As the lights dimmed, the guitarist was the first to come out. Everyone whistled and yelled and woo hoo’d, and he smiled. It was an endearing smile and I remember how his appreciation of our affection was expressed through that smile. It definitely warmed my heart from the very beginning. One by one, the members came out and everybody cheered. Every song was incredibly charged with Mark’s sauntering emotions. He looked beautifully poised and fuck-you-ish with black smeared around his eyes and his who-cares attitude. By the second song, I just *had* to run down the steps and get closer to the band. I wanted to see their sweat and feel the energy of their performance. I came within touching distance of the stage and all I could do was stare at every one of them as they gave all they had to the music. I danced and cheered and smiled and I just couldn’t drink in enough of Mark’s presence. He was hypnotizing. By the time they performed “Nearly Lost You”, I was entranced. It was sung so beautifully and the band played so incredibly well. Needless to say, we called them out for an encore and they almost seemed surprised. Mark seemed exhausted and unhappy up to that point but the smile on his face when he walked out for the encore was all I needed. At that moment, I became a true fan of the Trees and I’m never looking back. I truly believe that they are the best band that I have ever seen and I hope to see them many times again.

Lisa Marie Cipollo
LOLLAPALOOZA JULY 9TH POWNAL, VT

Saw the Trees at Lollapalooza in Pownal, Vermont. I was very disappointed. They sounded very good but played only FOUR songs. Mark was apparently upset about objects being thrown onto the stage. Now, this went on all day and In ever saw anything thrown in a vicious manner. Obviously Mark thought differently. At one point he said “you’re lucky that didn’t hit me” to someone in the crowd stage left. A bit later, it was something like “if we don’t come back out,you can blame your friend”. Then he walked off stage. And he didn’t come back out. The band stood around for some time, apparently unsure if he was offstage for good or just bluffing. Finally they handed out guitar strings, drumsticks,etc., and left. I WAS a Trees fan (moderately so, not hardcore) but no longer. After paying $50 and driving three hours, I expect the artists to PERFORM, rambunctious crowd or not. You can’t tell me that the Trees haven’t experienced some crazy shit at concerts before. DEAL WITH IT and keep playing (or singing). His little rock star temper tantrum really turned me off. He seems to be an egocentric asshole with no respect for his fans. At least he did on July 9th.

I BRAKE FOR SNAKES.S..S…S……S
Matt Nott
LOLLAPALOOZA JULY 18TH WEST PALM BEACH, FL

I caught the Trees at Lolla in W. Palm Beach, FL on July 18th. They played a great set, but it seemed too short. I was curious to see if they were going to play any of their mellower tracks off of Dust in front of a crowd anticipating Rage Against the Machine. They didn’t, I believe (my memory of that day is a wee bit fuzzy) they opened with “Shadow of The Season”, then they cranked out in no particular order, “All I Know”, “Nearly Lost You”, “Halo of Ashes”, “Dying Days”, “Julie Paradise”, and “Gospel Plow”. They had an additional guitarist, besides Gary and Van. Speaking of Gary, he was wearing long sleeve flannel in 95 degree weather and bounding about the stage as usual, he also added in quite a few windmills. Mark seemed to be drowned out by the bass, I don’t think they can overcome this problem w/o changing lead singers, but as a fan I could make out the lyrics and enjoyed it. Mark didn’t say anything to the crowd, but Van announced who they were and what not. They were much heavier and louder of course, than the album (“Dust”), and most of the songs seemed a little up tempo compared to album cuts. Overall they kicked ass, the 3rd guitarist was a definite plus.

Sean Baribeau
LOLLAPALOOZA NEWPORT, TN

I saw the Screaming Trees at Lollapalooza in Newport,TN. They were great!I had never really been exposed to too much of their music but I am now a devoted fan. I thought that they would be a kind of layed back mellow grunge band but they rocked. I found myself in a daze listening to the outstanding riffs and solos. The band is just a well rounded machine all together. They hung with the best of the Lollapalooza mainstage bands, which isn’t easy. I live in Cleveland, Georgia and had to drive like 250 miles to see the Screaming trees but it was well worth it. I encourage anyone who gets a chance to go and see the Screaming Trees. And I say unto them rock on!!!!!:-)