Friday was my first time attending a show at The Station, to see Dinosaur Jr. with Awesome Color.
As an all ages venue with a schedule that usually consists of young bands and pop punk shows that I’m not that interested in, it’s rare that an event there will actually get my attention (and in turn get listed here on HillyTown). Of course it was surprising when I found out that Dinosaur Jr. – a highly regarded legendary indie rock band, featuring their original lineup which includes one of my two all-time-favorite musicians, Lou Barlow, on bass – was going to be playing a show at the venue. I guess that what I wasn’t getting was that suddenly Dinosaur Jr. have an appeal to the high school set due to the inclusion of “Feel The Pain” on recent editions of Guitar Hero and Rock Band.
During the show, Barlow made a number of jokes about the weather and grunge, as well as something about guitarist and frontman J Mascis not feeling well. Regardless, his epic guitar solos in the last few songs had the diehards in the room headbanging and the energy and certainly the volume in the room was kept high through the band’s set. Pulling from their 20-year history, they tore through all the hits as well as some songs from the upcoming Jagjaguwar release Farm (due out June 23).
Openers Awesome Color rocked almost as hard at the headliners, though their similarly 70’s-inspired riffs and moves all started to blur together after a few songs in. Given a slot in a better club with decent lighting and sound (or, alternately, a smaller show in a house, basement, or warehouse), I could see them really putting on a great show, but unfortunately The Station didn’t offer them much for that. At least their artwork is really cool. That said, if they make it back around to Portland at some point, I’ll definitely check them out.