Saturday, July 25, 2015

Primus Played Stone Pony Summer Stage w/ Dinosaur Jr. and The Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger, 7/24/15

Freak Scene

Just a few words on last night's Summer Stage show.

I am a huge Dinosaur Jr. fan, so going to this one was a no-brainer for me. CoolMom and I dropped the kids off at their summer camp for a perfectly-timed evening eat, swim, hang event. It only lasted until 9, though, which meant that CoolMom would have to leave me right after Dinosaur Jr.'s set. Having her there with me for their part of the evening was great as Dinosaur Jr. are one of the bands we bonded over early in our relationship.

Sean Lennon's and Charlotte Kemp Muhl's The Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger opened with a short set. Psychedelic and weird, I really enjoyed them. They used an interesting code for the songs on the setlist.

I saw Dinosaur Jr. mastermind, J Mascis, lurking in the wings, and my pulse quickened. Dinosaur Jr. took the stage at about 7:30 and let out a roar of sound that had some unprepared folks up front -- CoolMom included -- sticking their fingers in their ears. During their 45 minutes, the band hit lots of high points including "The Wagon," "Start Choppin," "Out There," "Pieces," "Feel The Pain," and "Freak Scene." J's vocals got a little lost in the mix, at least from our spot up front; but his guitar sounded fantastic.

At the end of their set, CoolMom had to bolt to pick up the kids. I got a text from her a few minutes later telling me she had no car keys, and I had to give up my primo front and center spot to feed them to her through the fence. Once over there, a friend asked me, "Hey, are Dinosaur Jr. always that insanely loud?"

"Yeah," I said. "Awesome, right?"

I couldn't face fighting my way back up front for Primus, so I watched their set from afar as I walked around the venue. I found some friends and we ended up having a great time. The Primus fans in the audience told me that the set was one of the band's best; and, as far as I was concerned, the visuals and the musicianship were all there.

The high from seeing my favorite band with CoolMom on such a beautiful night carried me all the way through the set from Primus and, pretty much, until I fell asleep.

I took lots of pictures of the first two sets and got a few far away shots of Primus. Check them out below. See more at Flickr.

Addendum: True Primus Fan, Kenny Geiger of The Uncommonly Good and GPP Gives Us His Take on the Set by Primus.

Since 2010, I have seen Primus at least once a year. With this trip to The Stone Pony last Friday, I was officially seeing Les and the Gang for the 6th time. By now, I had a very good idea of what to expect with the stage show, songs, etc.

That was my mentality for a good chunk of the set, as the band managed to move into concert staples, such as the thunderous opener that was "Here Come the Bastards," and their magnum opus "Frizzle Fry," with ease.

However, I could feel an entirely different vibe from the band this time. They seemed to be feeding off the crowd energy as they ferociously attacked one song after another. I had a feeling something big was coming. The feeling only intensified when Les busted out the upright bass.

After playing the hit "Jilly's On Smack" from the Green Naugahyde album, the trio made their way into a cover of the Oompa Loompa theme song, giving it the perfect dosage of the signature primus wackiness. The song that came next, though, is where I was floored. They actually busted out the 1994 Pork Soda cut "Mr. Krinkle."

Now, for every other time I had seen Primus, I always hoped they would bust out a gem. "Mr. Krinkle" always topped that list of gems. When I heard Les Claypool play that opening riff on the upright bass, I felt as if I had transcended. My friends nearby said they had never seen me that way. One friend claims my eyes rolled into the back of my head. I cannot be so sure, as I was too focused on hearing one of my all time favorite Primus songs for the first time live.

The rest of the set was just even more icing on the already satisfying cake. I especially enjoyed the little nod they gave to The Good the Bad and the Ugly by playing the theme before doing "American Life." Only those guys could think to pay homage to such a film.

Many have said this is the best set they heard from Primus. Those people are like myself: The kind of folk that have turned seeing Primus from a concert to a family tradition of sorts. My dad and I do it every tour they have. So I can surely back up those folks by saying that last Friday’s was the best set I have seen Primus put on in my life.


  1. Went to this show in Boston last night and it was incredible. I'm dying to get my hands on a live recording of it. Any ideas if something like that exists?

    1. I'm not sure. I guess I'd keep my eyes on the band websites for news of that sort of thing. The show was a blast.