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*Hum at Irving Plaza*

*Hum at Irving Plaza *

Last night/morning was the Hum concert at the Irving Plaza. It was amzaing, truly amazing. Here pretty much is how the whole day went:
At around 5:17, I met Sebastian at Grand Central. He is really cool. Then we went to Penn Station to meet .flip., his girlfriend, and three other of his friends from Huntington. After wandering around Times Square for a little bit (and getting stuck in a dance studio store because .flip.'s friend had to buy a unitard. Don't ask - we were just dragged along for the ride), he went to Irving Plaza - which is buy Union Square. We got there at around 7:20 PM (doors opened at 8:00), and since there was already a line we went to pizza. The pizza was really bad, .flip. had his salad because he was vegan, etc etc.

We returned to the Irving Plaza at around 7:40 and waited on line, anticipating the moment that we actually get to see Hum. Doors opened at around 8:00, and after coat check, etc etc, we made our way to the floor. The Irving Plaza is extremely similar to the Metro in Chicago, except the bar is on the first floor and it is smaller. Before the band started, they had these really bad videos and were playing some music - some of it really bad, some good songs like Hummer by SP and Fourty-Six & Two by Tool.
At around 8:30, Heroic Doses come on the stage. They are a three piece instrumental band. The drummer had this weird, almost pained look on his face. They were okay, the biggest problem they had was that their songs didn't seem to go anywhere. They have a record coming out in May on Subpop, if you care. The coolest thing during their set was not anything they played, but Jeff was watching from the second floor. .flip. noticed, and pointed it out to Seb and I, and we spent most of the set watching Jeff.

After playing for about 30-40 minutes, Heroic Doses finished their set and then there was another intermission before Swervedriver came on. Swervedriver looks a lot like Spiritualized, and sound like them as well - almost a mix of Spiritualized and Radiohead. The vocal mix was pretty bad, I couuldn't understand what the lead singer was saying. The crowd was kinda into it - there was one tiny moshpit that was started by three drunk people and entered really quickly. After playing for ~45 minutes, Swervedriver left the stage.
Right after Swervedriver left, the crowd began to get antsy waiting for Hum. We could see the Roadies bringing in their stuff, including Matt's HUGE Orange Amps. After 15 minutes, Bryan went on stage to do a sound check. He did some cool stuff with his drum sticks, flipping them and stuff. He had this grin on his face. He left, and the roadies started to set up the guitars. There was some jerks screaming "Roadie, Roadie" and he played a few chords on the guitar to the delight of the crowd. After about 20 more minutes Hum came on stage.

Bryan was wearing a white t-shirt, Tim a white-button down shirt with brown pants, Jeff was wearing jeans and a red Nissan shirt, and Matt was wearing a white Mercury Rev shirt and torn khakis. They opened up with Afternoon with the Aloxlotls, with the beautiful beginning that they play live. Surprisingly, at least to me, the whole crowd knew the song and sang along, but you could hear Matt's singing pouring over the crowd.
After Afternoon, they play The Pod. The crowd went nuts, pushing and pulling, smashing into each others. Somehow, I managed to work my way to about the fifth row of people. It as awesome, Tim and Matt were playing away, Bryan was killing those drums. Just amazing, a lot more intense than it was on YPAA, even though Matt didn't do "The Scream."

After The Pod, they played Iron Clad Lou which got the crowd riled up even more. Suprisingly, a lot of people knew ICL and sang along, which was really cool. After ICL was Ms. Lazarus - which was extremely beautiful. The lights that they had going perfectly matched this song. After Laz was Comin' Home. Again, mad hopping ensued and the crowd was thrilled. After Comin' Home I think was Why I Like the Robins. This song sounds so great live - especially the end where Matt is singing "She's got colors to spare and I don't care what they choose, ..." This song was followed by Suicide Machine, which Matt introed by saying this song was about "Watching football with your girlfriend (or special friend)." Again, the crowd knew this one and sang along, even the part of the end, which was just stunning. By this time, I had weasleled my way into the second row just a little to the left (my left) of Matt.
After Suicide Machines was Scraper - which was insane, though not as bad as The Pod. Tons of crowd surfers - meaning I got kicked in the head a lot. The cap of Bryan's drum stick flew off - right into the hands of one of .flip.'s friends, which was really cool. Matt ended it, of course by screaming "F--- you eyes, F--- you too," with the crowd screaming along. After Scrape was Apollo, which was semi-jeered (Unfortunately, I love this song). When Matt sang "I'm thinking of a number between everything and two" for the first two times - people were saying "Four," or "I've heard that line already, get on with it." Essentially, a lot of people were being assholes (surprise there). They were probably drunk, considering the ground was layered in crushed beer cans. However, by the end - people had warmed to the song and were singing along. This song is EXTREMELY beautiful live, the look on Matt's face while singing it (I still was in the second row) was amazing, he was really into this song.

After Apollo they played Stars - which started more moshing, shoving. Surprisingly, there wasn't that big of a cheer. I think most of the people there knew Hum - a lot of people wanted Winder, of Boy with Stick, or Pinch + Roll to be played. Stars sounded great. After that they played I Hate it Too - which was just crazy. Bryan towards was pounding of the drums and symbals like a mad man - I saw half of his drum stick fly off.
After I Hate it Too, they left the stage which caused everyone to start chanting "One more set, one more set." After between 5-10 minutes, they came back on and Matt said "Thanks a lot, we're going to play 2 more songs and that's it. You guys are great. Thanks" (He essentially said that, I don't remember the exact words. Sorry.) Then they played Little Dipper which I didn't recognize at first because I was so surprised. By the end of the song, everyone was singing along. I've never really liked Little Dipper that much on YPAA, but it sounded great. Then they closed with I'd Like You Hair Long. Everything went crazy, intense pushing and a lot of crowd surfers. Tim was going nuts on his guitar, Bryan was beating the crap out of his drums, it was awesome, especially the end. After saying "Thanks" for the last time, they left the stage. They had played for a little over an hour, and were really exhausted. They poured a lot into that show, and it showed.

.flip. and Seb went up to try and get posters, while I just wandered, contemplating what I've seen (and exhausted from all the heat and getting banged around so much.) .flip.'s friend - the same one who got Bryan's cap - got Tim's water from one of the security guys, and we all took a little sip of it. It tasted a little weird, but refreshing. I went upstairs to get a poster, but couldn't get one. We all waited on the floor, waiting for Hum to come out after 20 minutes security started kicking us out, so we went outside to wait for them.
We were sitting on 15th Street, waiting, and we saw the Hum van. It is grey with a trailer. It was really dirty and someone wrote "Hum" in grafitti style on it on the trailer. After maybe 20 minutes, Miles Windish - the sound guy came out to start packing. We didn't recognize him at first, so we asked him his name and he told us. .flip., Seb, and I instantly recognized him and told him so, and he asked how, so we responding we are on the list and Gordon told us all about you. He laughed and said "Yeah, Gordon warned me all about you guys." He then had to get something and asked us to guard the guitars, so we hovered over them, staring intently at them, almost as if it was an altar or something. He returned and continued packing the van and talking with us and the same time. He was really, really nice - he put up with our questions and told us some great stories.

After twenty minutes (or thirty, we kinda lost track of time), we saw Gavin Rossdale and Gwen Stefani. Apparently, Gavin wanted to see how his old tour-mates were doing. Someone asked how he liked it, and he said he liked it a lot. Then, the two lovebirds drove away in a limo.
At around 1 AM, .flip. and some of his friends had to go back to Penn Station to catch the train back to Huntington (because the next one was at 3:30 AM), so Sebastian and I said our farewells and we stayed, along with some of .flip.'s other friends. Maybe twenty minutes after they left, Heroic Doses came out and began to pack their stuff. They were really nice, especially the drummer. It turns out his drums are from 1966, which was pretty cool. Maybe a hour an hour after taht (it was around 2AM), Tim came out and made a beeline to the van. Then, Bryan came out and seeing us, he said "Man, you guys must have been waiting for a while. We've been there for over an hour." He was really nice and began to sign stuff (there were maybe five people there.) Then Matt came out and when he saw Bryan signing stuff, he was pretty shocked and said pretty much the same thing. I thanked him and then Jeff came out and he also was signing. They didn't really spend much time, they were talking - but all of them were really nice, esp. Matt who was really humble. After thanking them for the umpteenth time, we went home. We (Seb and I) got to Columbia at around 3AM, and promptly went to sleep.

I got my DiH poster insert signed, Seb got the liner notes for YPAA signed and I got a sheet of paper for .flip. signed. .flip., I gave it to your friend with the spiky blond hair.
I tried to take some pictures, but none of them came out. I'm sorry, I tried.
Go see Hum, you will NOT regret it -- Yosi
PS Sorry for the length
PPS Please if you have any video bootlegs, send it in. Please, you get stuff in return.
PPPS My ears stopped ringing at around 4:30 PM Saturday, but promptly started again. Hum is loud.


(Joseph David Gelfand) :

the shows

Saturday January 31, 1998 ST. LOUIS, MO The GalaxyMonday February 2,1998 KEARNEY, NE Cunningham's