March 2, 2021
Load remaining images Riley has found many ways to demonstrate his love beyond simple attendance. Besides acting as a extra pair of hands when needed he also penned a set list for his 200th show that, as played by the band, has moved into legend. Blonder first heard moe. in 1995, and decided to book the band in Ft.Collins immediately. His first live experience with them must have had some effect, judging from the devotion he has shown since. Blonder offered, “If I hadn’t lived so far from the band’s home stomping grounds for the last decade I would surely be over 500 by now.”Birmingham saw Wes Rizzo, new lighting designer for moe., hitting a marvelous stride in just his second outing. The long time fan has spent the last few years tirelessly working towards his dream job and was dead set on delivering his best for the fans. Rizzo even went so far as to reach out to Blonder in regards to his favorite colors, then made a special package to use throughout the evening. “I’m working for moe.,” Rizzo said the next day, “But I’m also never going to forget where I came from and the famoe.ly we are part of.”Sneak peeks at new material have been a regular feature on this leg of moe.’s perpetual tour and Iron City got theirs early. Percussionist Jim Loughlin sang “Don’t Wanna Be” while peppering the tune with delightfully catchy runs along his vibraphone. The tune has quickly become a audience favorite, and it worked well alongside the following “Bearsong.”As “Bearsong” simmered down moe. took the first of many chances to create thematic instrumental territory linking it to a wild “Billy Goat.” Guitarists Chuck Garvey and Al Schnier wowed the crowd with their lightning fast musical baton passing and their bluesy fret board pyrotechnics. A group of teenage fans who had been holding up a sign requesting their favorite jam, “Blue Jeans Pizza,” were delighted when the tune’s opening bass lines kicked in.The grooving dance party tune “George” got everyone hot and sweaty before sending them to intermission buzzing about how solid the first set had and the promise held for the upcoming second stanza. A comical pump fake on the beginning of the set came as drummer Vinnie Amico was late to the kit due to an animate discussion with Schnier. The guitarist took to the microphone to explain that they were working on remembering which of The Who’s songs were on which albums. With that matter finally settled moe. opened with a stirring take on Pink Floyd‘s ode to determination, “Fearless.”After Garvey’s tour de force slide work on the solo, moe. switched out instruments and took sizable gulps from their onstage beverages, a sure sign of long jams to come. Bassist Rob Derhak stands front and center onstage, and in their sound. With setlist needs fluctuating from night to night, it is only natural for one night to occasionally seem to focus on one member’s contributions over the rest. This night, it was all Derhak, as he mowed down several of his most frenzied bass slapping tunes with a palpable vigor and enthusiasm that was a wonder to witness.Beginning with a full out assault on “Tailspin” through a wild and winding first half of “Timmy Tucker,” Derhak showed his signature control and sense of groove to full extent. He handled vocal duties as well, flowing from baritone to falsetto effortlessly as “Time Ed” sprung to life, keeping a rock steady pulse for the dancers to follow at the same time.True moe.rons agree that you can’t go wrong with some well timed “head,” and as the familiar first notes started all attention was riveted on the stage, with the climax doubling back to finish out the “Timmy Tucker” jam. moe. still had one other ace up their collective sleeve in the form of a blistering “Sensory Deprivation Bank” that showed the fans that though the night was ending there was still a little left in the tank.To survive as long as moe. has, there are sure to be recognizable eras that are more and less favored by long time followers. That any band can keep such devout fans through decades of ebbs and flows is a true testament to the power of music to reach us on a deep and meaningful level. moe. has seen new blood added in crew and fans alike, while still pleasing their longest lasting fan vanguard. The renaissance moe. has enjoyed the last few years shows no sign of stopping, and the band and fans wouldn’t want it any other way!Setlist: moe. | Iron City | Birmingham, AL | 2/18/17Set 1: She, Don’t Wanna Be, Bearsong > Billy Goat, Blue Jeans Pizza > GeorgeSet 2: Fearless, White Lightning Turpentine, Tailspin > Timmy Tucker > Time Ed > head. > Timmy TuckerEncore: Sensory Deprivation Bank, Johnny Lineup Jam band heavyweights moe. forged new fans, delighted some of their oldest and dearest followers and delivered an instant classic show at Birmingham, Alabama’s Iron City. Wildly exuberant fans danced maniacally as swirling lights and epic jams lured them out past the warning signs of sanity during a two set scorcher. Though some fans began lining up two hours before the doors were set to open, there was even more momentous acts of love going on this warm February evening.Over the course of moe.’s 27 years, a cadre of super fans has naturally formed, generally known as moe.rons. Almost pathologically dedicated to the music that has enthralled them these fans chase songs and the band around the world in a clearly recyclable circle of love. Two such die hard followers, Osid Riley and Barry Blonder, marked staggering anniversaries in Birmingham, hitting the lofty totals of 250 and 350 shows apiece!