Butch Walker and The Black Widows

Stage AE

The last time I saw Butch Walker, he opened for Train, and I was left in a crowd where noone knew who he was or what he did. This time, Butch was headlining, and the crowd was a Butch Walker crowd.

Instead of having a traditional opener, Butch just had his band members perform a few songs, as they all have musical side projects. First was Telstar which consisted of Butch's Rhythm guitar player and the chick who does everything from play bass to tamborine. Next was Sinclair, which consisted of the regular bass player and his little brother/merch guy. Then Butch's lead guitarist came out and sang a couple songs before the actual advertised opener, Shovel and Rope took the stage... they were also people that played with Butch's band. In a little twist, Butch actually opened for himself. Doing a little solo set of Cigaratte Lighter Love Song, Passed Your Place Saw Your Car and Thought of You, a couple Marvelous 3 songs I wasn't familiar with, Alicia Amnesia, Going Back and Going Home berfore finishing up with Race Cars and Goth Rock--or was that the other way around? Then he got his band on stage.

With the full band, he played 95% of his new album. The only old songs thrown in the main set were Pretty Melody and She Likes Hair Bands from the first Butch Walker and the Black Widows album. In typical Butch fashion there were teases of other songs. Come On Eileen broke out in the middle of Synthesizers and a snippet of Breakdown was played just before. I'm pretty sure Butch set the record for shortest break between main set and "sudden unrehearsed, completely unplanned encore" with a whole of like 3 minutes.

Encore consisted of Closer to the Truth and Further from the Sky, and extended hootenanny of 3 Kids in Brooklyn and a super duper extended version of Sucker Punch that included Butch running around the crowd, running across the bar, going up to the balcony and schtick wherin he sucker punched his bass player and they had to carry him off the stage. Good good stuff.

It's amazing how fun Butch is in live shows. Even the man has passed 40, he still brings it to every show. Given the freedom of headlining, his energy and antics are just amazing. If you ever wanna have a good time to some old fashioned rock and roll, go see a Butch Walker show.

Concert Highlight:Butch's Energy. After taking a shot from on top of the bar and before going to the balcony, Butch grabbed my arm with a very very sweaty hand. It was awesome.
Concert Lowlight:Five (ok so one of them was Butch) openers. Ok, they only played a few songs each, but they delayed the greatness that was to come