Saturday, November 22, 2008

MMW @ El Rey

Last night I had the pleasure of taking in a show at one of my favorite venues here in LA: the El Rey Theatre. It's a cozy little joint with two fully stocked bars, a grill on the side, plenty of open space in front of the stage, beautiful chandeliers flying overhead, and a plethora of good music streaming through. 

Last night was some particularly good music in the form of the tonal triumvirate Medeski, Martin, and Wood

I was a bit worried about getting into the venue at first. I was running late, and by the time I got there the line was fairly long. I rushed and grabbed the first lot I could find (a $15 parking garage east of the venue. From what I hear there is an $8 one across the street, I recommend you go there or find street parking). But the fates smiled upon me as I quickly scalped a ticket for $20. Anyhow, onto the music. 

When I first heard they were playing in LA I was stoked, as I hadn't seen them since sophomore year in college, in fact I didn't even know they were still around. Shows what I know. Apparently they've released three albums this year. Three! So needless to say they pillaged from those three, as I didn't recognize any tunes. But really, I could care less. Everything that came out of the trio was fun, danceable, and amazing. I honestly think they could play on a bunch of rocks and somehow produce rad tunes. This theory was nearly tested at one point when Wood and Medeski grabbed cow bells, and Martin grabbed his tambourine. This percussion jam lasted about five minutes, and they never skipped a beat. (Although I was very sick of hearing "More Cowbell" about fifty times). 

At the end of the show they thanked everyone for the amazing energy (it definitely was a lively and fun crowd), as they opened up a killer encore. Bottom line, great show. If you've never seen Medeski, Martin, and Wood go check them out. Expect some crazy experiments in their mad music lab. But once you've heard them transform a chaotic blend of noise seamlessly into a thick jazzed laden rhythm you'll be hooked.

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