TicketMOMster review: Chris Cornell @ Centennial Concert Hall
I haven’t always agreed with Chris Cornell’s musical choices, but I’m pretty sure of one thing. He could sing the alphabet and if there’s any gravelly rasp in his voice or a scream right around the letter “P”, I’m going to enjoy it.
Right from the first note, my body relaxed and my brain went: “Aaaah yes…let’s sit here and listen to this all night…”. Tonight’s show was just short of “all night”; Chris sang and played his guitar almost non-stop for more than two hours.
Sometimes warm up bands and main acts aren’t evenly matched. An audience buys tickets for one type of music and if the warm up band’s style isn’t complementary, usually it’s a recipe for disaster; or at least a very painful half hour. That wasn’t at all the case tonight. Chris Cornell and Fantastic Negrito were an excellent pairing.
Fantastic opened the show with his bluesy roots music and oh my God, that guy is a performer, through and through. I liked the range of his voice and the fact it was all over the place and not easy to predict.
He’s got that “I’ve been through some really awful stuff” soul that comes through in his music. At one point he sang “Bitch, eat my cancer” over and over.
After that song he told the audience “My Mama don’t like that song.” Hah! I didn’t particularly like it either, but it certainly was interesting.
I liked his version of Lead Belly’s Black Girl (In The Pines) and I especially liked that a lot of people sang it in the audience too.
At the end of his performance he received a standing ovation and offered to sign people’s stuff and dry hump their legs at the merch table. At this point my brain went: “Hmmm! That would be interesting…” But I’m not that type of girl. Opportunity missed. Heh.
If you missed Fantastic Negrito tonight and you’re interested in the dry humping too, he’s coming back next month during Interstellar Rodeo (Aug. 13).
He brought guitarist, Tomas Salcedo with him tonight, but it looks like he’s also got a full band. I hope they all play at the rodeo; I’m looking forward to it.
If memory serves me correct, the last time Chris Cornell was in Winnipeg, he played at Pantages Playhouse and was accompanied by his record player and acoustic guitar. That was a cool show.
This show was different in that it was at the Concert Hall, he took the stage to a standing ovation, and he brought multi-instrumentalist Bryan Gibson with him. Turns out, Brian is waaaay better than a record player as he played the keyboard and mandolin, and really excelled at the cello. His accompaniment on I Am The Highway was deep and meaningful. Very moving.
Chris started the show with tunes from his solo work as well as covers. Prince’s Nothing Compares 2 U, Dylan’s The Times They Are A Changin’ (Back) and Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean were great.
I don’t usually take videos at shows, but I wanted to remember the sound of Chris’ voice with Bryan’s cello, so I turned on my cell phone and ended up recording my most favourite song of the night, Fell On Black Days.
Be Yourself went right into Doesn’t Remind Me which resulted in yet another standing ovation. Blow Up The Outside World ended with a loop of Chris’ acoustic guitar part and then he rhythmically hit the body of the guitar. I could feel it deep in my chest as his vocals soared over the thumping. The stage got dark and creepy as the smoke circled around him. It was powerful.
The show ended with Chris’ mashup of One (U2’s music with Metallica’s lyrics) which makes my brain hurt a bit, but it’s always impressive to hear. There was also a three song encore that included John Lennon’s Imagine.
Judging from the amount of partial standing ovations during the show, Winnipeg loves Chris Cornell. How wonderful then that the Acoustic Higher Truth Tour ended tonight in Winnipeg. I enjoyed it very much.
EVERYONE STOP READING EXCEPT FOR THE KIDS WHO WERE SITTING IN ROW 22, SEATS 30-ISH
I go to a lot of shows. I go to shows where I have no connection to the music at all. But even if I’m incredibly bored, I’m respectful to those around me. I would never even think of carrying on loud, obnoxious conversations during the show. I’m slightly disappointed the very muscular, extremely irritated man sitting next to me didn’t hurtle over the seats and pulverize every one of you. I sincerely hope we never end up at the same show ever again. Please work on your concert etiquette; it’s brutal.
TicketMOMster is a Rock and Jazz-loving Mom; single-handedly keeping Ticketmaster alive in Winnipeg. Follow her musical journey here: www.facebook.com/TicketMOMsters