Last Friday was Not So Silent Night 2009, Live 105′s annual end-of-year show. The last time I went to NSSN was 10 years ago, and it was a much more low-key affair. (Although Courtney Love did throw her guitar into the audience at the end…that was pretty cool.) This year’s concert was at the Oakland Arena, which was actually a lot smaller than I thought it was, so there wasn’t really a bad seat in the house, although we had floor tickets.
Rahul and I missed the first band, Metric, but apparently they only played a 3-song set. We walked in to the arena just as Vampire Weekend was coming onto the stage. They played a fun set, though most of the crowd didn’t seem to be very into it. Next up was 30 Seconds to Mars, which was…okay? I told Rahul that it seemed like Jared Leto had read a book titled “How to Be A Rock Star 101″, and a lot of the set seemed kind of forced. He tended to stick to these three rules: 1) Wear a quirky outfit, like fingerless rainbow gloves, and spike your hair. The higher the better. 2) Say the city and/or state that you are playing in as often as possible. 3) Drop the F-bomb at random times. That’s rock. To be fair, his singing was actually quite good, it just wasn’t my thing. The most interesting part of the set was when all the sound cut out completely during the climax of their current single, “Kings and Queens” and didn’t come back up for about 5 minutes. I can imagine some sound engineer or roadie got fired that night. After 30 Seconds to Mars was AFI, which was also not my thing, but they put on a good show.
After what seemed like forever, it was finally time for the headliners: Muse! I’ve been looking forward to seeing them live for a long time, and they didn’t disappoint at all. In fact, they’re probably one of the few bands I know of that sounds better live than recorded. Matthew Bellamy, the lead singer, in addition to being an amazing vocalist, is a really really good guitar player. It’s pretty impressive how much sound comes out of a 3-person band. In addition to the incredible live show, I was entertained by a guy in front of me who kept trying to dance with this girl even after several rejections in a row. Gotta give him points for persistence. Overall, the show was amazing; totally worth it just for Muse. But I really have to start taking earplugs to concerts; my ears were ringing for a whole day afterward.
I recently found out that Muse will be back for a US tour next spring, so I’m going to try to get tickets for that, too! If you enjoy a solid rock show, I highly recommend you check them out, too.