Dec 29, 2010

Built To Spill @ Metro Theatre

He is graying in his beard. He is bereft of hair on top. He wears a T-shirt with an owl on it. He shuffles on stage, sets up his own gear and the band start playing (15 minutes before schedule). He is the anti-hero. He has one guitar. It is old. It has 'Ben' written on it. He cares not for show. He plays his guitar like no other. There is no other. He is Doug Martsch. His band is Built To Spill. They are life. They matter. You need to know them.

Built to Spill have longer passed the chance of being 'hip'. They have never sold truckloads of records. So on this trip, their second to Australia, they played to a half full Metro Theatre. But those that were there would have witnessed greatness. Greatness that can't be measured. But felt. In a year where denizens of sheer mediocrity (Bon Jovi) can sell out football stadiums three times over, we have a truly talented and seminal band playing to a small crowd. No matter, I know where I would rather be. In the hands of a man who cares. Who instructs my musical belief. A belief built on soaring guitar riffs, untouchable guitar melodies and a unique angelic voice that sits on top, taking me to places unknown and unforeseen.

They spanned it all last night. A full gamut of new and old. Classic and soon to be classic. "Traces" was a good appetiser, that familiar jangle of guitar reminding us instantly who were seeing. Highlights soon flooded. "Kicked It in The Sun" was all pure glimmering majesty. "The Plan" burst a hole in my heart and then I was dumbstruck when they chose to play "Twin Falls", this classic song releasing near tears. "Life's A Dream" was languid beauty, whilst "Wherever You Go" was supercharged glory. Closing with "Carry The Zero" was near perfect. This song has an untouchable guitar melody that probably makes grown men cry. After a short interval they came back to give us more, pushing the show to nearly two hours of pure greatness. I was thinking, hoping, they would close with "Broken Chairs" and they did. This epic of fortitude was built up, torn apart and put together again. A reminder for me, if it was ever needed, that when I count on one hand my favourite bands of all time, then Built To Spill will always have a finger specially reserved just for them.

Set List
In The Morning
Kicked It in the Sun
The Plan
Twin Falls>Some
Distopian Dream Girl
Life's A Dream
Wherever You Go
The Wait
Carry The Zero

Stop The Show
The Weather
Broken Chairs


  • At January 03, 2011 , Blogger elemento said...

    Oh man, they closed with Broken Chairs? Man, I am quite sure you will hear the pop of my head if they do that tomorrow night. What a set list!!


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