Thursday, December 4, 2008

Ryan Adams Played Oracle Arena - Pics, Review, Setlist

Last night, bookended by two massive neon Cardinals roses, Ryan Adams and The Cardinals kicked off the first night opening for Oasis on their North American tour. Despite suffering some of the typical "opener" roadblocks (non-full audience, lesser stage setup, quieter mix), the band delivered a solid set, and by the end they had a solidly delivered on their latest material, as well as some Adams classics.

Throughout the show, the band was under a pretty low level of light. We have no idea whose decision it was (or maybe it was a stage fright thing), but it did make it a little harder to engage the band's on stage persona. Still, there's no question that the band delivered on their musical potential. Newer material like "Cobwebs", "Fix It", and "Magick" was thoroughly fleshed out, and made the album versions pale by comparison. Perhaps the only weakness was that "I Taught Myself How To Grow Old" lacked the epic guitar jam that's usually present at Adams' headlining shows.

Even more impressive than delivering on the new material, it seemed that Adams has accepted that he needs to "play the hits" in order to engage a less familiar audience. The band delivered solid versions of "When The Stars Go Blue" and "Two", not to mention and awesome, rocking version of "Come Pick Me Up" that was the highlight of the set.

Playing a large venue, to an unfamiliar audience, as an opener, is always a tough act to pull off. However, it speaks to the continuing growth and maturity of the Cardinals that they jumped into the situation and managed to avoid any pratfalls. If they continue in this direction (and frankly, bring a bit of their live rawness into the studio), we're thinking that 2009 could be a big year for the Cards.

Crossed Out Name
Everybody Knows
When The Stars Go Blue
Fix It
Let It Ride
Go Easy
Sinking Ships
Come Pick Me Up
I Taught Myself How To Grow Old

More photos at the HAD Archive


Hanan said...

I missed the first three songs he played but none of them are my favourites so it's ok

I agree, his version of Come Pick Me Up was PHENOMENAL. oh, and Magick. so so good. I was listening to Cardinology today when running and it just didn't compare! it sounds so quite now that I've heard it live.

anyhow, good review, and kudos.