Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Live review: The B-52s

Posted By on Wed, Aug 12, 2009 at 11:18 AM

The B-52s w/ Snagglepuss

The Fillmore Charlotte

Aug. 11, 2009

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The Deal: Athens, Ga., new wavers surf into The Fillmore as Charlotte's Snagglepuss nabs the opening spot.

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The Good: The show kicked off at 7:30 with a 30-minute set by local band Snagglepuss. The band's energy provided the perfect fit to warm up the crowd and plenty of heads were bobbing and feet were tapping as they got things started.

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When the B-52s hit the stage, the crowd was definitely ready. The half-full Fillmore was moving and grooving for the duration of the band's hour-and-a-half performance. The night kicked off with "Pump," the opening track from the band's latest album, Funplex — a sign of things to come as they performed a handful of tracks from the disc.

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With her red hair flowing past her shoulders, a bright mini skirt and fishnets, Kate Pierson drew a loud round of applause when introduced to the crowd. Her vocals, along with Cindy Wilson, both sounded as good as ever and the harmonies showed that three decades of working together can only make you stronger.

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Wilson was constantly flashing smiles and she danced and sang the night away. She and Pierson handled vocal duties as Fred Schneider left the stage during "52 Girls" and "Roam." It should be no surprise that "Love Shack" got the biggest sing-along of the night, especially with Wilson's signature line of "Tin roof...rusted!"

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Keith Strickland remained low-key to one side, providing momentary flashes of guitar solos when needed. Overall, the group was there to entertain and the crowd soaked up every campy moment of it. It was no surprise to see the merchandise table filled with B-52s lunchboxes and stuffed rock lobsters, in addition to the standard t-shirts.

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The Bad: Nothing much to complain about. The show was about what I expected, except for the early ending time of about 10 p.m. That and Schneider didn't look completely thrilled to be there.

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The Verdict: 33 years after starting up, the band still puts forth all the energy they can into every performance. It was entertaining to watch and it sure doesn't look like they have any indication of slowing down.

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The B-52s setlist

Pump

Mesopotamia

Ultraviolet

Private Idaho

Give Me Back My Man

Funplex

Strobelight

Quiche Lorraine

52 Girls

Roam

Party Out of Bounds

Love in the Year 3000

Hot Corner

Love Shack

Encore

Planet Claire

Rock Lobster

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