I had a free round trip "Rapids reward" frequent flier ticket on Southwest due to expire soon, Mary had some unused credit from a cancelled vegas trip like wise about to go kaput so we said what the hey and lets meet up in Phoenix where Tiger Army is doing a Friday show at the Marquee with Calabrese! Besides, Calabrese was high on my list of "bands I enjoy and I have never seen in concert yet" so I was able to get the day off, find nonstop flights & met her there! Stayed at the same La Quinta I've used the last 2 trips out there as it very convenient & cheap - I was gonna use a free night from their reward program until they offered a $35 weekend rate which was too good to pass up so I'll keep the points for another trip! So it was a fun but cheap trip!
I got a little worried tho when I got in the venue & saw no Albert, no TA merch set up - Tiger Army hadn't yet arrived. Very unlike them as they usually spend a lot of time setting up & sound checking. First up was War Tapes - I'd first seen them last may opening for TA in Baltimore and Philly and while I enjoyed them then they've gotten even better in a very 80's goth/pop influenced way reminiscent of Bauhaus, Peter Murphy, Joy Division, Echo & the Bunnymen etc. Will be good to see them again in October in Anaheim as they are also on the bill the same night as VNV Nation!
Checked back in the lobby after War Tapes - Tiger Army was finally in the building as I spotted Albert with his hand truck - turns out they'd had 3 flat tires and a ton of traffic on their way down from the night before in Fresno - poor guys!
Calabrese were up next and enjoyed their set, they are a 3 piece of brothers (last names Calabrese) doing poppy Misfits influenced horrorpunk heavy on the "whoa-hohs". For a closer they did a fun cover of "We Are 138" that got the crowd happily singing along.
Tiger Army played last but did a fucking AMAZING show, especially considering they had no soundcheck, still the crowd was really into it & the energy level super high. This is the 3rd time I've seen them at the Marquee and one reason I always make it a point to catch them there is that they get such a great response from the crowd & seem to really enjoy it. Nick mentioned several times how great the crowd was & how if he had his way they'd play the Marquee every month :)
Super great setlist (posted below) including the first time I've seen them do Outlaw Heart without a steel guitar in about 5 years (back on the Rancid tour), also only the 2nd time I've heard Swift Silent Deadly live... For an encore they did American Nightmare (dedicated that one to Calabrese!), Never Die & one of my all time favs I haven't heard them play in several years - Under Saturn's Shadow !!!!!! whoo hoo!!
Nick also dedicated "Pain" to Jerry Finn (producer of their most recent album) who recently passed away after being taken off life support about a month after suffering a brain embolism, it was very moving and he is much missed
Funniest line of the night when there was a ton of pot smoke up front from Nick: "Whats with all the weed? Drugs aren't my thing but if they were it certainly wouldn't be some old hippie shit"
I am *SO* looking forward to those Anaheim shows in Oct and my (long) vacation!!!!
here's the setlist:
The War Tapes hanging out after the show: