Um, wow. Last night was amazing.
I was in the front row of the pit, holding on to the barrier, right in front of Jerry Cantrell. I was, of course, singing along with every word of every song, and during "Down in a Hole" Jerry looked straight at me, saw me singing, grinned, kept eye contact, and sang a line of the song to me.
Yeah, I can totally die happy now. It was like the perfect moment, because "Down in a Hole" is one of the most beautiful songs ever, and I wasn't trying to get his attention, I was just watching him sing, and he just happened to look at me and was pleased that I was singing along.
And it was an *amazing* show. It was better than the previous two; the crowd was way more into it, possibly because there was a mosh pit. Have I mentioned I hate shows with no pit? I hate seating in general; no one should be sitting during a rock show unless they are physically incapable of standing.
AIC was just so obviously having fun, grinning at each other, and Jerry and William have great chemistry, the way that they sing together and seem to really enjoy each other's stage presence. At one moment Jerry was playing guitar out on this extended platform, and he was supposed to step back to the mic to sing an upcoming part, but instead William walked out on the platform with him and they shared the mic. Stuff like that happened all night--the members of AIC just look they're having so much fun, and are so happy to be onstage together. Their performance feels so real and organic, unlike Velvet Revolver's which is all staged.
They've been playing the same set at every show, but changing the order of the middle songs, and having one song that changes. Last night it was "Dirt"; previously it was "Love Hate Love" and "Dam That River." (I really wish they'd swap their opener, "Again," for "It Ain't Like That." The show doesn't really get going until the second song, "Grind," and then starts completely KILLING with the next, "We Die Young," which is why I think "It Ain't Like That" would make a stronger opener--who can NOT rock out to that one? I just unfortunately don't really think "Again" is a particularly strong song--they have so many better to choose from.)
Jerry made eye contact with me again one more time, as I was rocking out to something-or-other. The crowd seemed to be a mix of AIC and VR fans; several of the people in the front row seemed to just be tolerating AIC. Which, y'know, offends me on so many levels, but I won't go into it. But a LOT of people were into AIC--after their set finished the crowd was screaming for an encore. And a couple of times the crowd started up a chant of "Jerry! Jerry!" I heard plenty of people grumbling that they should have split the bill. Yeah, I liked this crowd! (It also started up a chant of "Fuck Axl!" which I found very amusing.)
Velvet Revolver played a much better show last night compared to the previous two shows. Scott was far more chatty with the audience (and most of what he said made sense!) and his voice sounded better than Saturday, although still a bit strained. Slash was amazing--ooh, I got a Slash guitar pick! He threw it to the crowd right after finishing an awesome rendition of "It's So Easy." The girl next to me also got a guitar pick, and the guy next to me caught Weiland's Gatorade that he tossed to the crowd.
I was thinking of leaving early to get back to the train station (the last train back to New York was at 12:15 and the band played until 11:30) but it was so good that I couldn't leave. I had to see the encore of "Wish You Were Here" (so beautiful the way the whole crowd sings along) and "Slither."
(Incidentally, I was in the front row mainly because this nice fellow scooted aside to squeeze me in. [I left work at 3:45 and arrived at the venue around 6:45, thanks to a slow Amtrak train, rush hour traffic, and a very slow ferry. Oh and lots of rain.] We ended up talking for most of the show [I mean when the bands weren't playing]--he's a guitar tech who has his own band. You meet the coolest people at shows, seriously. And it's like since you're all sharing this love of music, people go out of their way to be cool even to strangers. [I mean aside from the drunk assholes and crowd surfers who kick you in the face, but there weren't too many drunks and I've gotten very good at ducking crowd surfers--of which there were MANY during "Rooster" and the whole VR set.])
I was very lucky to make it back to New York--I was going to take the ferry over the river to Philadelphia and then take a cab to the train station, but I got lost trying to find the ferry and found a cab on the Camden side instead. Actually me and two other people were racing for it, and then when we got there we realized that we were all going to the same place, so we shared it. How awesome--and random--is that? This was probably a lot faster--I made it to the train station at midnight, and then found out the train was delayed by a half hour anyway. SO glad that I didn't leave the show early.
I slept on the train and got back to New York around 2:30am--can you tell I'm totally exhausted today? But JERRY CANTRELL SANG TO ME DURING "DOWN IN A HOLE" so really, nothing can bring me down today.[Cross-posted to my InsaneJournal]