Live Review

Riding the Coat Tails of Girlfriend

Matthew Sweet at Music Box Supper Club on July 15, 2015

I see the dilemma.  I loved Girlfriend and Altered Beast but rolling the dice to see Sweet over Parker would be a risk. A short oldies show?  I guess I'd be happier  (not happy) with the show you saw rather than one based on Kimi Ga Suki Raifu?But seventy five minutes  is too short a set unless you are Doc Watson and I saw him play TWO seventy five minute sets with a brief intermission inbetween.

Wow, so 90s songs are oldies now?

Too bad you felt cheated by Sweet's 75-minute set. I've followed him post-Girlfriend and enjoyed his music, especially his three-disk collaboration with Susanna Hoffs, singing 70s covers. You wouldn't think those two could pull off a cover of Yes's "Seen All Good People" but they do. They even make an old Bread song sound hip.

Maybe he should have followed the 75 minutes with another 20 minutes of real oldies...

75 minutes is definitely on the short side...I like his stuff, saw him do a couple of hours back in the "Girlfriend" days and he was really good, saw the Thorns once too and liked that better than I expected (the vocals were so pretty, I'm a sucker for that)...he's got some songs for sure...not sure what I would have done in your shoes...if I'm by myself, I probably do Millsap...if I am with my concert cohorts, I'd have had a hard time convincing them to miss Sweet.

For perspective,, I saw the Bottle Rockets and Marshall Crenshaw back in March in a little club in Indy, the HiFi, capacity is 100, no seating for concerts...Bottle Rockets played an hour plus, then came back and played 2 hours (counting encores) with Crenshaw...it was unseasonably warm that night, excruciating for the band and audience (they called an ambulance for a guy that passed out from heat)...they were drenched and must have gone through a dozen towels and several bottles of water apiece...to me, that's how you do it.  Crenshaw has been around longer that Sweet, he's over 60, he's still doing it as hard as he can...If you are the headliner, you need to do a little more than 75 minutes.

Good review Jay...you called it like you saw it...

Thanks Hal, Jeff, & Jim for your feedback. It's always appreciated that readers take time to chime in. I was very excited to see Sweet and loved the duet albums with Hoffs. If you see some of my past stories ... you'll notice the artist's connection/energy with the audience is what makes a live performance different than playing a record on the stereo. Most of the "usual suspects" that attended the Sweet concert said they liked it. He just wasn't engaging ... and compared to the recent shows I've covered ... for lack of a better measurement ... He came, He played, He left.