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Top 10 Live Shows of 2005

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1. Motley Crue, UMB Bank Pavilion, St. Louis, August 9
2. Alicia Keys/John Legend, The Fabulous Fox Theatre, St. Louis, March 23
3. Kelly Clarkson, The Fabulous Fox Theatre, St. Louis, August 20
4. Berlin, Ameristar Casino, St. Charles, July 7
5. Goldfinger/theSTART, The Pageant, St. Louis, February 26
6. Neil Diamond, Savvis Center, St. Louis, December 11
7. 30 Seconds to Mars, Pop’s, Sauget, Ill., September 19
8. Stryper, Pops, Sauget, Ill., October 6
9. Whitesnake, The Pageant, St. Louis, July 17
10. Carrot Top, The Pageant, St. Louis, February 9
| Jim Campbell

1. Bob Mould, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, September __
2. New Pornographers, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, October __
3. Doves/VHS or Beta, The Pageant, St. Louis, October __
4. The Frames, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, October 6
5. Interpol/Q and Not U, The Pageant, St. Louis, March 15
6. Franz Ferdinand, The Pageant, St. Louis, September 27
7. Sufjan Stevens, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, September __
8. Hockey Night, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, September 7
9. My Morning Jacket, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, November __
10. Sleater-Kinney/The Ponys, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, October 4
| Shandy Casteel

1. The Faint, The Vic, Chicago, September 10
2. Nine Inch Nails w/Queens of the Stone Age & Autolux, Savvis Center, St. Louis, September 14
3. Tracy Bonham w/Aqualung, Blueberry Hill, St. Louis, April 28
4. Iron and Wine w/Calexico, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, December 13
5. Suicide Girls, Pop’s Nightclub, Sauget, Ill., September 30
6. Ray LaMontagne, The Pageant, St. Louis, September 25
7. Metric, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, October 29
8. Team Sleep w/Idiot Pilot, Pop’s, Sauget, Ill., July 17
9. Keane, The Pageant, St. Louis, September 27
10. Jem w/Josh Kelley, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, October 29
| Laura Ann Checkett

1. Hold Steady, Hi-Pointe, St. Louis, 6/20
2. Kasabian, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, 5/27
3. Kaiser Chiefs, La Zona Rosa, SXSW, Austin, 3/17
4. Franz Ferdinand, The Pageant, St. Louis, 9/26
5. Koufax, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, 7/7
6. The Faint, Uptown Theatre, Kansas City, 4/28
7. OK Go, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, 11/11
8. Cameron McGill & What Army, Arlene’s Grocery, CMJ, New York, 9/15
9. Bloc Party, Stubbs, SXSW, 3/17
10. Cursive, Bowery Ballroom, CMJ, New York, 9/17
| Jim Dunn

1. a-ha, Irving Plaza, New York, 9/13
2. Kaiser Chiefs, La Zona Rosa, South by Southwest, 3/17
3. The Frames, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, 10/9
4. Cameron McGill, Arlene’s Grocery, CMJ, 9/15
5. Margot and the Nuclear So and So’s, The Patio, Indianapolis, 11/4
6. The Faint, Uptown Theatre, Kansas City, 4/28
7. Spouse, Frederick’s Music Lounge, St. Louis, 4/18
8. Kasabian, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, 5/27
9. The Futureheads, La Zona Rosa, SXSW, 3/17
10. OK Go, Mojo’s, Columbia, 2/23
| Laura Hamlett

1. Gang of Four, Irving Plaza, New ork, May 17
2. Coachella Festival, Empire Polo Fields, Indio, Calif., April 30–May 1
3. Arcade Fire w/David Byrne, Irving Plaza, New York, February 2
4. The Dears/Shout Out Louds, Bowery Ballroom, New York, June 11
5. Chad Van Gaalen, Mercury Lounge, New York, December 2
6. Interpol/Blonde Redhead, Radio City Music Hall, New York, March 1
7. Lollapalooza, Grant Park, Chicago, July 23–24
8. Bloc Party/The Ponys, Bowery Ballroom, New York, April 8
9. The Evens, East River Ampitheatre, New York, May 21
10. Nada Surf, Bowery Ballroom, New York, October 7
| Joel Lapp

1. The Forms, Hi-Pointe, St. Louis, January 20
2. Built to Spill, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, May 24
2. The Hold Steady, Hi-Pointe, June 20
4. Sleater-Kinney, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis, October 8
5. Murder by Death, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, November 7
6. Nomeansno, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, April 21
7. ZZZ, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, June 1
8. Captured! by Robots, Gearbox, St. Louis, April 16
9. Dysrhythmia, Creepy Crawl, St. Louis, April 5
10. Clockcleaner, Lemp Neighborhood Arts Center, St. Louis, May 29
| David Lichius

Top Concert Observations of 2005
1. Brendan Benson, Blueberry Hill’s Duck Room 8/3: Power-pop’s knack for stirring the sapphic urges is revealed as two young ladies enthusiastically hump throughout the set.

2. The Forty-Fives/Heavenly States/Maxtone 4, Mojo’s (Columbia) 4/9: The 45s’ Bryan Malone: “We had a session with John Peel just before he died. So I guess this song killed him. Ha ha.” Stony silence. The States’ Ted Nesseth, snickering: “Too soon!”

3. Built to Spill @ Mississippi Nights 5/24 & Ted Leo/Pharmacists @ Creepy Crawl 6/9: I wasn’t in Nam, but I’m pretty sure the heat/humidity were comparable.

4. Nonmusical entry: Chris-Fucking-Elliott, Blueberry Hill 12/13: I have embraced Nathaniel Mayweather and can shed my mortal coil without regret.

5. Har Mar Superstar @ Vintage Vinyl 4/7: Armed with only a boombox and his sexy ass, Har Mar charms VV shoppers, including a confused fellow in a sharkskin suit.

6. The Orange Peels @ The Way Out Club 8/23: If Christopher Guest made a movie about pop bands, this quartet could star. Hugs all around!

7. James Brown @ LAMA 9/25: A tiny emcee walks onstage and dozens of frat boys mistake him for “Fuckin’ James Brown! Woo!” and start dancing. They slowly realize their mistake and bring their Roger Rabbits to a reluctant halt.

8. Guitar Wolf @ La Zona Rosa (SXSW) 3/17: Godspeed, Hideaki. You shotgunned PBRs without peer.

9. Nada Surf @ Red Eyed Fly (SXSW) 3/19: Matthew Caws talks about calling home, absentmindedly revealing his phone number, with area code. A sea of philosophy majors frantically Blackberry the digits.

10. Magnapop @ The Pageant 3/29: Yeek. Just how high was I in high school?

| Kimberly Faulhaber

Top Ten Live Moments of 2005 (a very subjective list)
1.   Gravity Kills share a smile (October 28, The Pageant, St. Louis)

As the St. Louis industrial rockers blazed through the classic “Here” at their long-awaited reunion show, GK singer Jeff Scheel locked eyes with each of his bandmates. The quartet each shared a heartfelt grin, channeling a musical camaraderie that even three years apart couldn’t break apart. After so many legendary Christmas shows from the Urge and Fragile Porcelain Mice holding court each Thanksgiving, can making the “Killoween Freakshow” an annual All Hallow’s Eve tradition be too much to ask? If shows of this caliber are what we’d have to look forward to, we can only hope.

2.  Trick-or-treating with Guster (October 31, The Blue Note, Columbia)
The Boston quartet swore there would be no encore, but as audience applause echoed throughout the cavernous Note, Guster returned to the stage in costume, and urged the audience to silence. With no amps and no mikes, the front trio played through “Jesus on the Radio” on two guitars and a banjo dressed as a chicken, a hot dog, and a milk carton, but it was percussionist Brian Rosenworcel’s priceless man-being-eaten-by-shark costume (so constricting that he could barely walk, much less play his tambourine) that made the moment as hilarious as it was magical.

3.  The New Pornographers amp it up (October 6, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis)
The Canadian supergroup began their St. Louis stop like a great band going through the motions, but ended it as champions. The turning point? The instant frontman A.C. Newman struck the first two jangling chords of “The Laws Have Changed.” The packed-in crowd erupted with such giddy energy that the band couldn’t help but return the favor, from that exact moment until the concert’s last note faded into the night.

4.  Esthero drags her band back out (July 19, Blueberry Hill, St. Louis)
 The trip-hop chanteuse stuck with a low-key, acoustic encore until a special fan request brought her ten-piece band back to the stage for the ebullient “Everyday Is a Holiday (With You).”

5.  Bob Mould rattles the walls (September 27, Mississippi Nights, St. Louis)
The soaring dreampop of “Man on the Moon” proved without a doubt that the best way to see this legendary songwriter is backed by a band of crack musicians like Fugazi drummer Brendan Canty.

6.  The Mercy Kiss rock for no one (September 15, The Way Out Club, St. Louis)
You had to include both the bartender and the door guy before the number in attendance broke double-digits, but that didn’t stop the L.A. trio from flying through Phantom Planet’s “California” like their lives depended on it.

7.  Tommy Lee takes flight (August 9, UMB Bank Pavilion, St. Louis)
His Mötley Crüe bandmates cleared from the stage, drummer Lee took to the sky for a stunning aerial percussion solo.

8.  The Pillows close with their three finest songs, back-to-back (May 14, Hyatt Regency, Chicago)

9.  Our Lady Peace’s epic take on “Will the Future Blame Us” (October 18, The Pageant, St. Louis)

10.  “Instant Karma!” gets U2 (December 14, Savvis Center, St. Louis)
The Irish quartet’s unexpected tribute to the late John Lennon wrapped the already great concert on an uplifting yet poignant note.

| Jason Green

 

 

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