Last night, Peter and I went to the Independent to see Everclear. As Peter will tell you, I worked myself into quite a state of anxiety, because it is one of the very few bands for which I would consider myself a true fan: I know all the songs and their lyrics and can’t get through a hard day without listening to at least one of their songs. Why is this bad? Because every so often, I’ve seen a band I liked in concert and they were so vile and arrogant (i.e. Garbage) that I immediately lost all interest in ever hearing a song from them again. And knowing that I couldn’t like Everclear any more, a transformative concert would only mean that I would like them less.
To my great delight, Everclear turned out to be no Garbage. In fact, the band put on an amazing show with exactly the mix of songs fans wanted to hear: the latest singles, the well-beloved standards and two quirky covers. Art Alexakis, the soul behind Everclear, told the audience the band had a myspace page, and that he personally read comments and responded to them. He encouraged the audience to sing along on the choruses, invited women from the audience to dance onstage with the band during the last encore song (a cover Tommy Tutone’s “Jenny 867-5309”), and after the concert, he and the band went the merchandise table to meet any fans who stayed behind, regardless of whether or not they bought anything. I actually went away a bigger fan than I had been before, and Peter got me a cute Everclear hoodie which I am wearing now.