3 days and over 1,000 miles later, I've returned to my humble hometown after a great weekend of Fruvous shows. I wasn't able to make it to the 11/27 Chicago show (you know, it's that whole family thing), but the day after, I made the quick jaunt from northern Ohio to Chicago for an evening of Fruvous happiness. I overestimated the travel time by a little, and forgot about that lovely time change that gained me an hour. To make a long story short, I arrived at Schuba's around 5:00, and the doors were at 10:00. After checking out the immediate scene, I decided it would be a good time to stake out a coffee shop, so I found a Starbucks down the street and read several papers looking for things to do, to no avail. Passing by the club later looking for a good place to get some food, I ran into Murray unloading the van, who recommended a Mexican food place down the street, but I never did find it. Another foodless night. I was browsing a Sci-Fi/Fantasy bookstore when I heard the two owners talking about going to the show that night. Turns out they had gone on Thanksgiving and really enjoyed the show -- I got a little info about the show from them and convinced them to come to the show tonight. They didn't seem to understand the Fruhead concept yet, but seemed intrigued.
On my way back to the club, I managed to peek in on the soundcheck, which is always fun. I then went to stake out my place in line. Schuba's is basically a skinny bar which leads into a big concert room. The line was mostly contained inside the skinny bar, and I was amazed to see the density of people in the room. I noticed a little sign mentioning the maximum occupancy being 51, and there were at least twice that waiting around. Ohwell.
Once in, I immediately found my super-cool trip buddy, Jenny Coneff, who was with her friend Angela. Oddly absent from the show (and the Cinci show) was Chad Maloney -- you alive out there? Anyway, the show. We guessed about 400 people swarmed (and PACKED) this small club. They need to play bigger venues in Chicago, there's no question. There was no opening act, which was a (somewhat welcomed) first for me. Despite my front-row location, I wasn't able to grab a setlist in time, and I didn't tape either show so I don't have a setlist to post. I'm hoping someone on here got one and wants to post it.
I do remember the opening - the standard a cappella Message, then Poor Mary Lane, followed by Doorstep. I was unimpressed by the quality of the sound, the PA speakers seemed cheap and tinny. The guys were doing really well, though. After doorstep, Jian mentioned how crowded it was and how he hoped no one died in a trampling or anything. Someone in the audience yelled "Cincinnati!" They caught the cue and went into my personal highlight of the night - an impromptu but very tight montage of The Who songs. I don't know enough to tell you what was played, but it was very cool. Other cool stuff for the night included a good Kids Song, a beautiful Fell In Love, and a decent Horseshoes. Absent from the set was Medicine Show and Raja, despite the fact the dumbek was onstage, miced, and resting on a newspaper. ;)
Encore 1 was a full Green Eggs and (I think) Love Potion #9. Encore 2 was Fly and (I think) Authors. Then a suprise came out -- the crowd demanded a third encore, and we got it! It was an average Drinking Song without much audience participation, but very cool nonetheless.
The total show running time was almost 2 hours. Overall, a decent show. It was time to get some sleep for the next night, back in the home state. Check the upcoming post for a review of the Cinci show. :)
Well, I tried to put together a set list after the show (impossible for me to do DURING the show!) I think I really screwed up on the order of songs mostly, but this is what they played. I may have forgotten a couple things, but it should be close.
The Who medley was inspired by someone in the audience mentioning Cincinnati after Jian asked everyone to squeeze forward to accomodate more people in the room, and talking about people getting squashed. If anyone got these down in better order or has any additions, let me know!
I'm really glad to get to go to this show - the people were great, the band was great, and I could tell the band really likes Chicago.
Also, Marcus told me someone has 49 stamps on their Fruhead card.
Who will qualify for the ass-brand? :-)
Some other tidbits from the performance include: