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 Television in Seattle
Author: Delvin 
Date:   06-24-15 11:30

The group was utterly fantastic last night! They struck that ideal balance between tightness and looseness. Fred provided the foundation, his bass solid and reliable, but never plodding. Billy seemed to lean back into that bass support, letting rip with his rolls and triplets and cymbal interplay. It's rare to see a rock drummer cover so much space, hardly ever resorting to a straight four-four yet always able to propel the song forward.

Jimmy is a solid guitarist, acquitting himself in Richard's spot quite well, both on rhythm and lead. And Tom definitely wowed the crowd with his crying, liquid-sonding leads, working the volume dial as he picked the strings, à la Roy Buchanan or Jeff Beck.

The band's presentation was very stripped down: no big visuals or screens, no special lighting effects, just four guys, their instruments (which they didn't change all evening -- heck, even the opening act used more than one guitar) and their amps, and basic stage lighting. After the first song, somebody in the crowd hollered for them to "Fix the sound!" Tom asked, "Fix the sound? What's wrong with it?" Before he could answer, somebody else shouted, "It sounds great!" Tom just said, "Okay, there you go. We fixed it." Later, Tom told the audience, "Excuse me while I have a serious discussion with our lighting director." After a very short pause, he said, "Blue?" The stage lights all changed to blue. "Thanks. Okay back to the show."

I had no idea what they'd offer for a set list; I didn't know if they're the sort of band who gives the crowd their favorites, or who eschews the "hits" and goes exploring in deeper territory. (Or if they vacillate, like Prince.) When they finished the first part of their set, Tom announced that they'd be back in just three or four minutes. They did come back, played the last two songs, and said good night.

See No Evil
Prove It
Torn Curtain
Guiding Light
Marquee Moon

1880 or So

Oh man, I'd love to go up to Vancouver tomorrow night to see them again.

The opener was Jessica Dobson, who plays in a Seattle band called Deep Sea Diver. She played guitar, keyboards and drum pads, setting up loops to play and sing over. She has a strong voice, full of emotion and with just a hint of a little-girl quality (take that description as you will). Her set just kept getting better as she played. The audience went from a fair-to-good response to a standing ovation at the end.

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Michael Toland 
Date:   06-24-15 15:43

Reading this just confirmed what I thought when I saw them at Fun Fun Fun Fest a couple of years ago: they are NOT a festival band. Maybe someday they'll come back to Austin for a club date.

Post Edited (06-24-15 15:46)

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Philippe 
Date:   06-25-15 07:28

Some unlikely bands have made it to Europe recently, so I'm just hoping Television is one of those...

Post Edited (06-25-15 07:28)

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Post-Punk Monk 
Date:   06-25-15 09:51

Your set sounded like the amazing show we saw in Athens at the Georgia Theatre in late '13. Just a fantastic band with amazing guitar interplay supported by a fantastic rhythm section. Some of the best guitar we've ever heard.

Former TP subscriber [81, 82, 83, 84]
For further rumination on the Fresh New Sound of Yesterday®

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Delvin 
Date:   06-25-15 23:42

> Some unlikely bands have made it to Europe recently,
> so I'm just hoping Television is one of those...

Looks like they're playing the Green Man Festival in the UK in August. I didn't see any other European dates.

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Five*Words 
Date:   07-01-15 12:15

Slightly interesting that the proper set was Marquee Moon in full (...albeit out of sequence), with nothing from Adventure or the s/t record...

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Delvin 
Date:   07-03-15 11:20

"1880 or So" is on the s/t album. (But as Five said, it wasn't in the "proper set.") "Persia" is one they've played live on recent tours, but haven't recorded (or at least haven't released).

Yeah, that set list was intriguing. I would've loved to have heard songs from Adventure, and more from the self-titled -- not to mention "Little Johnny Jewel." Still, Marquee Moon is one of my all-time touchstone albums, so I was elated to hear it in full. (I've re-arranged MM on my iPod, to reflect the running order of that set. Maybe that's how the band originally envisioned the LP, but the length of some songs dictated a different track order.)

Some commentary from Richard Lloyd, on why he left Television:

Post Edited (07-03-15 11:53)

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Delvin 
Date:   08-25-17 18:00

The quartet is coming back to the west coast for a short tour. Rhett, they'll be in Portland on 9/24/17. If you haven't seen them before, I encourage you to take this opportunity. (As for me, tix are sold out to the Seattle show on 9/25 ... and I'm busy Monday nights anyway.)

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: rhettlawrence 
Date:   08-28-17 12:45

Thanks, Delvin. I did see them in 1992 or 1993 on the tour for the self-titled album, but would love to see them again. Trying now to figure out if I can make it to the show here.

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Heff 
Date:   08-29-17 12:47

I saw them last year and endorse Delvin's suggestion. I guess DC will never be as cool as Seattle - the show was nowhere near capacity - good for me! Before the show, a man was telling his friends how his son (who was there as well, about 15) was big fan of the band. The kid hung in there but during the 25 plus minutes of "Persia" I noticed he given up and was immersed in his phone.

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 Re: Television in Seattle
Author: Michael Toland 
Date:   08-29-17 13:05

The last (and only) time I saw them was a music festival - not an ideal setting for this band. They also played a set that left out most of their catchiest, most rocking tunes (i.e. "Friction" or "See No Evil"). But when they went into "Marquee Moon" - whew. Transcendence achievement unlocked.

I keep hoping they come back to Austin and play an actual club. I bet it would be a much better show. The outdoor music festival sound system did them no favors.

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