Top Concerts of 2009 | Laura Hamlett

live_matt-good.gifWithout a doubt, seeing Matthew Good was my concert experience of the year, and very near to the top of the decade.

1. Matthew Good | Massey Hall, Toronto (12.18-19.09)

Technically, this should be two entries but I’m trying to be fair to the competition. Without a doubt, this was my concert experience of the year, and very near to the top of the decade; the fact that I got to experience it twice sends me to the moon.

2. Mute Math/As Tall as Lions | The Pageant, St. Louis (10.23.09)

You’ve probably figured it out by now: I’m a huge As Tall as Lions fan. Live, they’re a force to be reckoned with; they can’t deliver anything but an awe-inspiring show. And supporting their stellar new disc Armistice, Mute Math was the perfect addition to the bill, proving themselves more than capable of throwing a few loops into the mix themselves. A great night from start to finish.

3. GreyMarket | Cicero’s/Blueberry Hill Duck Room, PLAY:stl Music Festival (09.17-19.09)

This is where it all began, my love affair with GreyMarket (and, later, my decision to work with them). I already loved their latest CD Some Orbits Will Never Decay, but their live show? Not one person left the room unimpressed.

4. Owen | Cicero’s, PLAY:stl Music Festival (09.19.09)

Headlining the final night of the festival, Owen delivered an intimate, solo performance to a packed Cicero’s. It was one of the few times I had to watch a show from start to finish, and the only one where I could sit while doing so. It was simply perfect.

5. Moneen | Cicero’s, St. Louis (10.04.09)

I fell in love with The World I Want to Leave Behind; live, the band was simply amazing. Another intimate crowd (appalling so, actually; these guys deserved a full house) but that didn’t stop the band from involving the crowd every chance they got. Add their Canadian graciousness to their blistering live set and you’ve got a night to remember.

6. Howie Day | Blueberry Hill Duck Room, St. Louis (05.01.09)

Solo acoustic. A sold out Duck Room, small by Howie Day’s standards. Though he didn’t form any relationships with the crowd, he nevertheless reminded us why he’s had such great success. A fabulous songwriter and performer.

7. Ra Ra Riot | Maggie Mae’s, South by Southwest (03.21.09)

When they took the stage, I wasn’t sure what to expect. This is an art-school band all the way: three geeky guys and two chicks who are lookers. But once the music started I saw why they were such indie darlings. Just enough motion onstage to keep it interesting.

8. Kings of Leon | Savvis Center, St. Louis (09.30.09)

I went to this show for the opener, White Lies. I had honestly never listened to Kings of Leon in my life; the songs and show were so good, I picked up Only by the Night and can’t stop listening.

9. Red Collar | Cicero’s, St. Louis (05.28.09)

I could tell by the intensity of Red Collar’s Pilgrim that the band had a lot of heart; what I couldn’t see until they took the stage before me was how intensely they love what they do. Hell of a show.

10. Seabird | Cicero’s, St. Louis (12.06.09)

I had been waiting to see these guys since a year ago when they canceled at the last minute due to illness. It was worth the wait; though they played more new than old, I still enjoyed every minute of their too-short performance.


Laura Hamlett

About Laura Hamlett 467 Articles
Laura Hamlett is the Managing Editor of PLAYBACK:stl. In a past life, she was also a music publicist and band manager. Besides music, books, and other forms of popular culture, she's a fan of the psychology behind true crime and violent criminals. Ask her about mass murder...if you dare.

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