Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Two lumps, Please: Flight of the Conchords @ the Hollywood Bowl
After hanging out for a couple of hours at the UCLA Jazz/Reggae Festival, I was whisked off to the Hollywood Bowl by Mr. Insom for concert #2 of the day - Flight of the Conchords.
Pulling into the parking lot, I was handed a white piece of paper that specified all of the things we were not allowed to bring in upon pain of death and dismemberment: cameras, recording devices, umbrellas, blah blah blah, alcohol (?!), glass bottles (?!!!). I was beyond pissed. One of the best things about the Hollywood Bowl is sitting outside with a bottle of wine and drinking. How dare they try and take that away from me! Besides, I had already selected a perfect bottle for the evening - Les Jeunes Rose, a Grenache/Mourvedre blend from Curt Schalchlin, the young owner and only employee of Sans Liege Wines. Sans Liege is in its second vintage and does small batches (as few as 200 cases for some varietals) and I'm totally going to become a club member.
It's okay, said Mr. Insom, we can just buy a bottle. What?! Hellz no. I wasn't about to let something like a stupid piece of paper prevent me from my perfect summer evening wine so I could shell out $30 for a bottle of Yellow Tail. I headed to the Hollywood Bowl store to look for a container I could transfer my wine into. Found a coffee mug. Price: $15.00 Yikes. And only enough room for about two glasses. Nuts. Looked around some more. Saw something behind the counter... "Hey could I see that sports bottle?" I examined it closely. It looked big enough. Definitely not glass. Turned it over and saw the $3.00 price tag. I broke out into a grin. The guy behind the counter saw me inspecting the bottle.
"Are you thinking of putting a bottle of wine in there?"
"Of course not - that's against the rules." I'm no dummy, dude.
"Well, if you were, it would fit."
"How interesting. Good thing I'm not."
I pay and make a beeline for the exit. A woman sees me leaving the store and asks me where I got the sports bottle from. I point the way, adding that it was only 3 bucks and it fits a whole bottle of wine. Her eyes light up and she gestures frantically to her buddy. I rinse out the bottle, and walk back to the car to christen my sports bottle.
Okay, now that I got my wine adventures out of the way, let's talk about the show.
What can be said about Flight of the Conchords, that hasn't been said already? They're from New Zealand. They sing funny songs. They have regular band meetings with their manager Murray. They are beloved by white people. This performance at the Hollywood Bowl wrapped up their spring tour that traveled through Europe and the United States. I was impressed that they were even going to be at the Bowl - it seats over 17,500 - but they had a nearly sold out house. Lots of "Mels". Heh heh.
We had to get their early to pick up our tickets. It was nice to eat a leisurely meal and hang out in our seats as opposed to rushing like we always do and trying to eat quietly during the performance. lol Plus, we had time to check out our fellow audience members. Mr. Insomniac spotted Timothy Olyphant, who is starring in the new FX drama Justified. It's pretty good and he's pretty hot in it. I give the show mega bonus points because Walter Goggins of FX's retired The Shield is also part of the cast and I am a huge fan. Anywho, here he is. You'll have to take my word for it.
I got a kick at how sparse the stage was. Just some stools, mic stands, and some odds and ends in the cavernous band shell of the Bowl.
I was so disappointed when the guys decided to leave HBO after only two seasons of their Emmy nominated show. Watching them sing on stage is awesome, don't get me wrong, but I like the fly dance moves, their charmingly realistic apartment, the supporting cast (Murray!), and their wardrobe. I regret not showing up in one of these numbers.
I think they were really able to flesh out their characters through the HBO show. The guy sitting next to me who was "in the business" (who isn't in this town?) said that HBO had offered them the chance to come back whenever they want in whatever format they wish. I can see how writing 12 30-minute episodes and original songs can be pretty demanding - so here's hoping they find room to do a one hour special or something.
They opened with the Robots - one of my favorite songs! - and Jemaine embedded a nice Ahnold Schwarzenegger impression for a cool California touch. Sparing no expense, they were accompanied on most of their songs by the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, which actually consisted of a lone cellist named Nigel.
The set list:
2. The Most Beautiful Girl (in the Room)
3. Hurt Feelings (Tears of a Rapper)
4. If You're Into It
7. Korean Karaoke (Oh, Dance, Baby)
8. 1353 (Woo Song)
9. You Don't Love Me Anymore
10. Think About It
11. Business Time
12. Song for Epileptic Dogs
13. Inner City Pressure
14. I'm Not Crying
16. Back On The Road
18. Demon Woman
19. Too Many Dicks on the Dance Floor / Rock the Party
20. Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros
21. We're Both in Love With a Sexy Lady
22. Sugalumps (Ballad version)
In between their songs, they did their adorable little patter.
Was this person filming in high def? Sheesh. Crowd participation gone wrong (but oh so right) during the Epileptic Dogs
Too Many Dicks on the Dance Floor/ Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros / We're Both in Love With a Sexy Lady / Sugalumps (Ballad bump 'n grind loverboy version)
For the encore performance of Suga(r) Lumps Bret and Jemaine danced along the pool circle of the bowl and hung out in the audience.
See how awesome and exciting it was from my typically horrible iphone Hollywood Bowl pics?
Now here's a video from robotronik:
Can I just say that we received strict instructions not to bring in any cameras? lol How do these people do it? I love how from the moment the concert starts you see the LCD screens of tons of people's digital cameras. I guess I was more concerned about sneaking in my booze than picture taking.
All in all, great time. I bought this t-shirt. :)