Sunday, December 08, 2013

Pearl Jam :: 'Lightning Bolt' 2013 :: Seattle

Apparently, tickets to this Pearl Jam gig sold out within 10 minutes. Many were waiting for a second show, but it was to be one-night-only. This is an impromptu trip, of course we didn't secure tickets. But hey, there was nothing to lose by simply appearing at the venue to see what happens. We are in Seattle after all, home of grunge and awesome music.

We got to the venue just an hour early, and TOTALLY LUCKED OUT. The ticket booth that had kicked people (who queued for hours from noon) out of the line way earlier, sent them away, and oddly re-opened at 6.30pm without any announcements, and started selling uncollected/returned/whatever tickets to three sections. Two tickets for face value, inclusive of administrative charges at US$139; each ticket cost US$69.50. We got pretty good seats! Take that scalpers. The scalpers were trying to sell a ticket at US$280 thereabouts. At least we didn't have to be left out in the cold, literally, at -3°C.

At the last show of their 2013 North American leg of 'Lightning Bolt' tour, Pearl Jam rocked out Key Arena with a mega three-hour homecoming gig. Mudhoney opened for them, and we made sure to catch that. Remember 1995 in Singapore at the Indoor Stadium? This was more or less a replay, but in the bands' hometown Seattle. All those songs of my teenage years. The man was incredibly delirious with joy because he was also at that 1995 gig and couldn't believe that he would get to re-live this, 18 years on.

Of course we zoomed to the merch booth. 

It was on this night that a pot party was held next door at Seattle Centre, celebrating the one-year anniversary of weed being legal in the state of Washington. That unmistakable smell of weed followed us all the way into the venue. There wasn't any smoking of cigarettes permitted, but nobody could stop anyone from lighting up weed. So we were completely bathed in a fog of weed. WIN. Like law-abiding Singaporeans, we declined all friendly offers of a puff. Tsk. Couldn't stop grinning when the band made a reference to that 1995 gig in Singapore, and uh weed.

ROTFL when the giant lightbulbs dropped down and Eddie Vedder clambered up and hung off one a la 'Miley Wrecking Ball'. Three friggin hours. The band sizzled and everyone had that stamina and towards the end, it was clear they ran on adrenaline and fed off the crowd. No wonder they didn't want to do a second show. They couldn't. They promised to "give it their all" tonight, and they did. The finale saw an awesome jam session with Mudhoney, and Kim Thayil of Soundgarden, and others covering 'Kick Out the Jams', and ending with 'Yellow Ledbetter'.


The finale of Pearl Jam's homecoming gig 2013.

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