Shows | Marc Farr

panicThis was a year of great live performances. From the king of modern country, Garth Brooks, to metal masters Black Veil Brides, diversity was the key word this year. Let’s take a look at my top concerts of 2014.

 

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The Pretty Reckless | The Pageant, St. Louis
Fiery hot, The Pretty Reckless absolutely rocked the stage. At the hometown show for lead singer Taylor Momsen, the audience could not get enough. Even after sound problems stopped the show for a bit, this band knows how to rock live. Vocally, Momsen was scorching, sounding better than she does on the album.

Gemini Syndrome | The Mad Magician, St. Louis
Headlining its own show, the band raged from the stage. Playing their first LP Lux almost in its entirety, singer Aaron Nordstrom, formerly a guitarist for Otep, fronted the group with pure vocal talent. This is a great band with a very big future ahead. Seeing them in an intimate setting like The Mad Magician was a treat.

Nostalghia | Pointfest 30, Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, St. Louis
While not officially billed on the Pointfest 30 lineup, word leaked out as Nostalghia made its St. Louis debut. With simply a backdrop and instruments, vocalist Ciscandra Nostalgia, pianist and drummer Roy Gnan, and cellist Adele Stein captivated the audience with selections from their debut LP, Chrysalis. Nostalghia’s voice is piercing yet elegant. The audience, many of whom had not yet heard of the band, swarmed them as they left the stage. Their future is über bright.

Indigo Girls | Powell Hall, St. Louis
Complete with the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, Amy Ray and Emily Sailers brought their patented brand of folk music to new heights. Accented by the orchestra, the girls were in the finest form of their careers. A great show, indeed.

El Monstero | Art Hill at Forest Park, St. Louis
A special summer show on Art Hill, the Pink Floyd tribute band rocked Forest Park. Equipped with actors, two stages, and an impeccable rendition of Pink Floyd’s catalog, El Monstero deserves the reputation it has achieved as one of the premier tribute bands in the country. Bringing The Wall to life onstage is not an easy task, yet the band does so with aplomb. Normally a winter event held at The Pageant on the Delmar Loop, this special show was definitely a sweet summer treat.

Panic! at the Disco | Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, St. Louis
Headlining 105.7 The Point’s Big Summer Show, Panic! at the Disco rocked Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre this summer, touring in support of their latest album, Too Weird to Live, Too Rare to Die. The audience at this show was almost rabid. No matter what label one wants to throw at this band—modern rock, emo, etc.—the bottom line is Panic! is one great live show.

Stryper | Wilder Theatre, Edwardsville, Ill.
Darlings of the 80’s metal scene, Christian metal band Stryper brought its show to The Wildey Theatre, playing a special acoustic set on an otherwise plugged-in tour. Featuring material from their newest effort, No More Hell to Pay, as well as classic songs like “Calling on You,” “Free,” and the MTV number-one hit “Honestly,” the band sported its trademark vocal harmonies—but not its trademark yellow and black clothes. Selecting songs from all of their releases, they treated fans to new arrangements of classic Stryper songs

Neon Trees | Ballpark Village & Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre, St. Louis
Playing St. Louis twice this year, once at Pointfest 30 and again headlining their own show at the new Ballpark Village venue at Busch Stadium, Neon Trees proved itself to be a great live band. Touring in support of their latest effort, Pop Psychology, the quartet danced their way through hits like “Sleeping with a Friend,” “Text Me in the Morning,” and “Love in the 21st Century.” Vocalist Tyler Glenn led his bandmates through a most energetic set. Having seen them on two occasions, I can say they never disappoint.

Davey Suicide | The Ready Room, St. Louis
Promoting his second full- length LP, Worldwide Suicide, he shared the bill with three other artists and made the show his own. Dark and powerful, Suicide and his band were riveting as they rocked through tracks from both albums, including “Kids in America” and “Generation Fuck Star” from the first LP, and new tracks including “Until We’re Dead.” (Read my interview with Davey Suicide here.)

Garth Brooks | Scottrade Center, St. Louis
After a 17-year hiatus from the stage, the king of modern country sold out the Scottrade Center over the course of four nights. Performing with him was his award-wining wife, Tricia Yearwood. A spectacular return to the stage.

And there you have it: my best shows of 2014. It will be exciting to see what 2015 has in store! | Marc Farr

About Marc Farr 244 Articles
Marc Farr is the Live Music & Assignments Editor of PLAYBACK:stl. He's so invaluable to us, we've nicknamed him Mr. Music. Reach out if you have coverage ideas! "I know it's only rock and roll...but I like it!"
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