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Concert Review: The Church, The Triple Door, Seattle, WA 6/15/09

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The Church’s tour behind their latest record Untitled #23 made it’s fourth stop last night in Seattle, and from my perspective, they were firing on all cylinders. They played at one of the city’s premier venues, The Triple Door. Upscale as the venue was, nothing could get between the band and their rabid fans.

The opening song, “Tantalized” set the tone for the evening. After an extended introduction, they locked in, and the crowd went nuts. For two solid hours The Church played “hits,” near hits, and tracks from Untitled # 23 to a sold out house filled with rapturous fans.

The Church have been incredibly prolific over the past 30 years, and have a huge amount of catalog to choose from. Which is why the set list at this show was so impressive. Pulling out the obscurities made fans like myself very happy indeed.

I have always been a huge Steve Kilbey fan. His solo album The Slow Crack remains one of my all time favorites. But Marty Willson-Piper’s guitar work absolutely stole the show last night. Usually a person’s attention is riveted to the vocalist, but I could not take my eyes off of Piper.

He found an opportunity on literally every song to show off his amazing guitar skills. It was never about showboating though. The sounds emanating from his guitar were simply riveting.

And I have to mention the fact that Piper hung out at the merch table for a couple of hours before the concert, happily meeting and greeting fans. I saw a lot of cell phone pix taken, and it was pretty damned cool.

Adam Franklin opened, and did a great job. While I really enjoy his latest Spent Bullets album, somehow things seemed a little slow live. Until he pulled out an amazing cover of Roxy Music’s “Pyjamarama,” that is. His band absolutely turned my head with their version of this classic song.

The evening ended with the one two punch of “Under The Milky Way” and “Reptile.” The guy next to me had mentioned that he had proposed to his wife during “Under The Milky Way” some 20 years ago. I watched him pull out a new ring to reaffirm their vows during the song, and saw her say “Yes.”

It summed up the entire evening for me. A band who are 30 years into their career releasing one of the best records they have ever recorded, touring in a van, back where they started.

And loving every minute of it.

The Church live are as as powerful live as they have ever been. Maybe better even than when I first saw them on the Starfish tour, oh those many years ago.

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About Greg Barbrick

  • Lord Harginer

    Hi Greg,in fact they didn’t play anything
    from Priest=Aura or Gold Afternoon Fix.

  • I was there.

    I was there.
    Church was in rare form.
    I really like them electric. Saw them acoustic the last time. (Crocodile Cafe)
    No Priest = Aura, au contraire, however, they sounded really really good.
    It is a treat to be able to experience a band so polished in an intimate venue a la porte triple.

  • http://theglenblog.blogspot.com Glen Boyd

    Corrections noted and made. Thanks to both of you for pointing them out. -ED.

  • http://clintjcl.wordpress.com ClintJCL

    A full setlist would be really helpful to those of us wondering which songs to study before future dates (like the one I’m going to June 30th!)

  • Larry

    What happened to the live video feed from Seattle to synclive.com? I sat there watching and waiting and all I got was some loser band from Chicago.

  • RonG from DC

    Set List

    The Triple Door
    Seattle, WA, USA
    June 15, 2009

    Tantalized
    Block
    Day 5
    North South East and West
    Happenstance
    After Everything
    Almost With You
    A Month Of Sundays
    Deadman’s Hand
    Pangaea
    You Took
    Operetta
    Under The Milky Way
    Reptile

    Encore 1:
    An Interlude
    Space Saviour

    Encore 2:
    Hotel Womb

  • eeeek

    Im so jealous, i want to see them again. I can’t get to the show around me tho…i wish they played Boston proper instead of the burbs..oh well, they always rock hypnotic

  • Eric M

    Thanks for the setlist of the Seattle ’09 show. I’d like to make a CD of it, though I wish I had a good recording of that show! One of the best concerts I’ve ever seen.