Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Tesla: Live and Kicking

Lori and I saw Tesla last night at Avalon in Boston, with about only 500 other people. Tesla is one of those bands who never got as big as they should have. They are fantastic song writers and killer performers - but they have no shtick, no act - and they were wrongly lumped in with 80's hair bands. They are so much better than that. They are currently supporting "Real to Reel", a two-disc collection of their favorite songs, so the show was a very cool and eclectic mix of covers (ranging from Aerosmith, and Led Zeppelin to Joe Walsh and Sly and Family Stone) and their own songs. So while there were many Tesla songs I missed hearing, and I forget they even exist until I pull out their first few releases and realize there are no songs I skip over, it was an excellent night. They played for over two hours - a very fun and energetic show that really showed off their top-notch musicianship and the down to earth attitude of the whole band. It also didn't hit me till last night just how upbeat and optimistic so many of their songs are ("Love Song," "Changes," "What You Give," "Way It Is"). Certainly not stereotypical metal heads, though they did give a shout out to Headbangers Ball - which gave them their first attention back in 1986. It was in fact after seeing the video for "Modern Day Cowboy" on the Ball that I bought their debut release - Mechanical Resonance and became hooked for life. The guys seemed to genuinely be enjoying themselves on stage and making up the set as they went along at times. Probably the best review they could get is that Lori, who said she didn't know a single Tesla song and got dragged to the show because I have no friends - loved them.
And my new found success with opening bands continues - the openers were Poets and Pornstars and I really liked their straight-ahead, balls-out rock and roll. Even bought their CD, hell for $10 you can't go wrong.
Tesla Set List:
Walk Away
The Way It Is
Modern Day Cowboy
Hang Tough
Got No Glory
Thank You
I Wanna Take You Higher
Heaven 9/11
Love Song
What You Give
Into The Now
Comin Atcha Live
Seasons of Wither
Gov't Personnel
Freedom Slaves
Heaven's Trail
Rock Bottom
Song and Emotion
Edison's Medicine

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