Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Hey, Chris R., where are you? And where are your editors?

We are still waiting for the Twin Cities' resident music hack, Chris Riemenschneider, to explain to us how he, as a semi-professional journalist, couldn't even get the set list or song titles right for Saturday's show.

Yes, this is the rocket scientist "journalist" who has written brilliant prose such as this:

"Speaking of unlikely scenes: Anytime a transgender metal band can perform on a public street, it's a pretty cool thing..."

Here's what some another web site thinks about Chris:

"Chris Riemenschneider.
Do you read those items in "Street Sounds" where he tries to be funny? He's not funny. Almost solid, but not quite a solid writer. Nothing interesting to say. Again, also always misspelling people's names, getting facts wrong, getting names wrong. Doesn't do his basic homework. He can write, but that's about it. Doesn't do anything with it."

And Chris, you lived in Texas for goodness sake, so there's no excuse for your sloppiness and poor taste. Unless you hold some sort of grudge against the band or their past management.

Feel free to ask Chris about this yourself: chrisr@startribune.com

Review of St. Louis show

You know that guy you know who's always trying to be funny, but he's really not? Well, he went to the show in St. Louis, and wrote this half-assed review.

What to expect at the meet and greets

A couple of people have asked how the Fanfire/Signature meet-and-greets work so here is a little primer.

Here is how they typically work: You'll meet John I. at the designated time and he gives you the passes and the instructions on where to meet him after the show. John is a nice guy and he's happy to chat with everyone.

The band will sign one item per person, and they have some weird rules about what they'll sign-no guitars, no pick guards, no drum heads. If there is any uncertainty check with John before the show.

The band usually comes in after 15-20 minutes and everybody lines up to get their photos, one photo per person. It is really quick and while the guys are generally nice they do probably want to get out of there so you won't be having any long conversations.

After everyone gets a photo taken the band sits down behind a table and everyone lines up again to get their one autograph; as soon as you get yours you're ushered out the back door.

The whole process probably only takes 5-10 minutes, at St. Paul there were only 5 people but at Houston there were more than 30 and it was pretty disorganized.

They upload the photos a few days after the show and you can download them or e-mail them or whatever.

If you don't have high expectations you'll probably be happy--it feels a bit like an assembly line but everyone is still really nice and cool, Dusty especially was great on Saturday. Really for a lot of people this is a once-in-a-lifetime chance, so if you can afford it, you should take advantage of the opportunity.

We have not had any regular backstage passes on this tour yet so we can't really tell you if that process has changed from how it has been in the past. If anyone has any info, please pass it along.

Monday, July 30, 2007

Review and set list from St. Paul show NOTE: We're adding videos from the show into the review--Check it out!

I had the distinct pleasure of attending the show Saturday night at the Xcel Center in St. Paul, Minnesota. We were up front on Dusty's side and the band sounded great from where we were at. In fact, Dusty seemed to be having a blast, he even threw in one of his spin moves near the end of the show.

The set list, in order, was as follows, pretty much what they've been playing on this tour:

Sunglasses (dollar store)
Pearl Necklace
Paid (nice slightly extended version)
Rough Boy
Blue Jean Blues (pretty short version)
Foxy Lady (killer again)
Tube Snake Boogie
LaGrange/Sloppy Drunk/BBQ
Tush (I'm not sure what Dusty sang for the first verse but it sounded like he flubbed it)

I wasn't looking at my watch, but they ripped straight through the set without stopping, no encore, but at least they played everything they were supposed. They had a real long drive to get from Minnesota to St. Louis for the next night's show.

No intro except for the funky dance music. Same outfits, same guitars, Billy smoked during Tush, the Lite Brite background was again pretty cool. Up close you could tell that what looked like a white pick guard on Dusty's yellow bass was really some white paint, you could even sort-of see the brush marks, going for the distressed look, I guess. Looked like they had a few new props around the drums, a little rocking chair and a fake mug of beer. "Hell Yeah" during LaGrange. I don't think they played with the Tone Dog thingy at the end. Billy was drinking a Diet Coke, and they were using the small video camera on the side of the stage. Met some cool fellow fans and the aftershow meet and greet was a blast, the band was in good spirits and everything went smoothly.

Now for some visuals:

Gin Blossoms were up first, didn't bother to see them, but they sounded ok. The Pretenders were next and, frankly, bored us to tears.

For this show, in what was essentially Brian Setzer's hometown, the Stray Cats were next on the bill. Here is a nice photo of Brian:

The Stray Cats were very active, the crowd got into it, and the Cats played a great set. I even saw Dusty standing at the side of the stage talking to the chick from the Pretenders and Big John.
But that's not who we came for--we came to see Z-Z-Top! BFD started out with smoke and red lights and a blazing version of "Got Me Under Pressure." "Pressure" is my favorite opener, and it was about all I could handle, it was almost too much for my brain!

Then things got a bit bluesy as the Boyzz were Waitin' for the Bus:

And then Jesus came to town:

Billy and Dust got a bit fancy:

And then Billy goes Lowdown not in the street, but onstage:

Where did you hear it?

But you've got to have some blues time. They went back...way back...to a time when the ladies were...

...wait for it...


Then they cranked up some MTV hits:

'Cause every girl's crazy 'bout our Sharp Dressed Men!

They've got fuzzy guitars:

And they know how to use 'em!

Gibbons the Gunslinger-no synthesizers here!

And don't forget about that girl they got, she lives on a hill:

Time to relax with a smoke.

But first--let's Give It Up for Mr. Elwood Francis.

El-wood, El-wood, EL-wood!

Now that Billy's smoking on the slide, you know it's time for some Tush:

One more time!

Dusty was so excited he even forgot the first verse of Tush!

But all things must come to an end, just like that shack outside LaGrange:

So after we all got Sloppy Drunk and had a fine plate of BBQ--Hell Yeah!:

The Master took a bow:

And Elvis has left the building:

Late Bridgeview review

There are some cool photos in this review, which also states that they played "Goin' Down to Mexico," although we're pretty sure they didn't play that song during the set:

Bridgeview Review

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Private show for WCNA 32

Looks like the band will be playing a private show in San Antonio this year for the Narcotics Anonymous convention:


To Chris Riemenschneider and all of the brain surgeons at the Minneapolis StarTribune.com:

While we appreciate that you took the time to Google set lists for the Top's 2007 tour, if you're gonna print the set list from last night's concert at the Xcel Center on your web site, at least get it right. I guess most journalists can't even cut-and-paste correctly from that newfangled Inter-net anymore. The song is "Waitin' for the Bus," not "Waitin' on the Bus"--c'mon, what would you be Waitin' for if you were already *on* the proverbial Bus?

And you got the order of the songs wrong (in two different spots) as well. Is it really that hard to write down a list of things in order? Don't they teach note-taking in journalism schools anymore?

Finally, StarTribune.com, you bitch about them playing too many "synth" songs from the 80's, and state that you wish they would have played more of the older classics like "Got Me Under Pressure." Of course, since all three of those songs come from the same album, which only sold 10,000,000+ copies, you obviously have no idea what the hell you're talking about.

But hey, at least you tried.

Anyway, here is the review and another related article:


Poplife article with incorrect set list

We'll have our own -accurate- review of the show posted in a day or two.

Friday, July 27, 2007

First meet-and-greet photos from 2007 Tour posted.

Signature has uploaded the photos from the first meet and greets on this tour. They only had six photos for Dallas, so I assume they must not have all been posted yet?

Anyway, here a photo of yours truly, I was the second person to do the meet and greet at the first show of the tour at the Woodlands. No Frank in the photo, and I have complained to Signature about that; we'll let you know their response.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Minneapolis sales

We will be headed up to Minneapolis for the show this Saturday at the Xcel Center in St. Paul, so we spent some time checking out what tickets are still available for the show. The answer is "a lot." Tickets are available 8th row center...the entire 7th row left is available... the entire 15th row center is available...and the shitty JACK radio station sponsoring the show is selling seats that are not on the floor for $10 each. Not a good sign.

Hopefuly there will be no curfew and they can play their whole set.

Now that the U.S. tour is underway...

...we will update this site now and then with items of interest.


Next is a link to some killer photos of Billy G. taken by Ross Halfin:

The "gold Pearly" Billy is playing on Just Got Paid this tour is explained here:

Finally, a link to Pete Z's set list page for the 2007 tour: