Erasure Nightbird Tour
Erasure's 2005 tour, Nightbird, May 18th at The Grove in Anaheim.
Definitely a different experience than Avalon, but I think that was mostly because of the venue. It's still a Los Angeles crowd, so although we were on the floor this time with everyone else, it wasn't really that much more lively. The Grove is a much more upscale, relaxed, and posh venue than Avalon, with a larger bar and a very elaborate, almost ornate-looking, seating area off to the side of the lobby. I think it's somewhat larger at 2,200 capacity, all on a single level rather than with a raised balcony a la the Wiltern or Avalon. The floor itself was divided into five tiers, each slightly raised as you moved towards the back. It felt bigger than Avalon, but not as good for viewing because the tiers weren't raised enough to keep other people's heads out of the way. The tiered arrangement works at The Wiltern, but clearly, not here... They served sushi as well (!!!!), which was both tasty and damned bizarre to eat at an Erasure concert! (I'm also scared to know how much it cost, but since Pearl and her co-workers were on an expense account I wasn't too worried... *grins* And the beer was expensive enough, $8... ouch!)
This show was with Pearl and two of her co-workers (Adam and Sachi) who were in town for E3. I picked them up and we headed down to Anaheim, where we picked up tickets from a fellow Craigslist'er. Good stuff. After eating our sushi and drinking our beer, we proceeded to make absolute fools out of ourselves dancing around among the "too-hip-to-dance" Los Angeles crowd and just had a good bit of fun. =D
The show itself felt a little better than the Avalon, probably due to slight changes in the setlist. They removed a few songs and added in a few ones, such as Solsbury Hill, which gave the set the variety it needed, IMHO. They still did Ave Maria, Rapture, and some other less-expected songs, which means that most of the setlist did stay the same between the shows.
So as far as tours go... I've now seen Cowboy, The Other Tour, and Nightbird. Of the three, I liked Cowboy best... by far the most fun. Particularly since I was in San Francisco, where the crowds are full of energy the whole show (Pearl once said "Erasure fans are rabid!" as we discussed San Francisco crowds!). The Other Tour was only a single set like Nightbird, but it felt more involved in the set and the costume changes. Not that Nightbird was bad... just... more conventional than the usual. And for Erasure, "more conventional" still means it's one of the best shows I've seen-- better than Garbage, better than Death Cab for Cutie, better than all the small acts at Coachella...
Yes, I'm probably biased. *grins*
After the concert we took a few group shots (Pearl has the rest), then off to Garden over in Monterey Park for a midnight snack. Very very yummy, even if the constant discussion between Pearl's two co-workers meant it took us 30 minutes or an hour or some other long time to actually order food! =P Fun times and interesting people to hang out with, plus we were able to get tickets at face value instead of paying scalper prices. Woohoo! Definitely have to do this again sometime... U2 in November? *evil grin*
** = they didn't appreciate my camera. They didn't have any signs regarding camera policy posted at the venue and people were openly walking in with cameras. Generally I understand that means "no professional cameras" and have never had a problem with it. This time they noticed me shooting away with a "long zoom camera". *shrugs* I voluntarily handed over the flash card after they asked if I could delete the video, since clearly that was the problem... got to see Solsbury Hill performed from near the front of the stage, which was fun. Since I had taken too many videos- one for every song til them- I just wiped the whole flash card. Or so they thought when they verified the card was empty.