Jane's Addiction at the Brick, 3/19/12

Categories: Last Night
JaneBrick-31.jpg
Photo by Ryan Siverson
By Rob Sherer

Jane's Addiction
With Black Box Revelation
The Brick, Minneapolis
Monday, March 19, 2012


View a slideshow from the concert here.

Growing pains were on display last night as a new concert venue in Minneapolis made its debut and familiar faces from Los Angeles kept the party going. The sold-out Brick was frenzied as an adoring, rain-soaked, and very large audience welcomed Perry Farrell, Dave Navarro, Chris Chaney and Stephen Perkins. Before Jane's Addiction took the stage, the opening tracks of Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here" set an anxious atmosphere, punctuated by the unveiling of two nude female statues. It was an unexpected opening to a set in support of The Great Escape Artist, the band's fourth studio album, but it worked.
The nude icons were soon joined by the band members, most notably Farrell and Navarro in all their rock-god glory. The set got off to a blistering pace as new track "Underground" gave way to a rousing rendition of "Mountain Song." Farrell was electric and Navarro's guitar was equal to the task. A 90-minute set that included a few additional new tracks followed, punctuated with crowd favorites including "Just Because," "Been Caught Stealing," "Three Days," and "Stop."

Throughout, pageantry was at the forefront. Half-naked men and women, grotesque dolls, leather straps, bondage, spanking and simulated cutting were employed to heighten the experience. So too was a version of the rocking chair built for two from the 1988 cover of Nothing's Shocking. That was put to particularly good use, and a favorite what the hell moment came as a sort of S&M version of Swan Lake's "Von Rothbart" gyrated with a pair of scantily clad dancers.
JaneBrick-26_ryan_siverson.jpg
Photo by Ryan Siverson

Nothing's shocking indeed. As electrifying as the early set was, it dragged, and the gratuitous visuals on stage quickly lost their effect. Farrell was charming as he bantered with the audience, and he was especially well received as he encouraged a group on the balcony to pull down drapery blocking their view. Sight lines were bad in several parts of the club and the crowd was all too happy to oblige as Farrell called out for them to "pull the fucking thing down."

Nothing's shocking to be sure, and most everything on stage was excessive. As the set plodded along, Farrell asked the crowd, "Do you know we've been here so long that the show is over?" The hour-and-a-half mark had come and gone at that point, and the tank very much appeared to be empty. A short encore that included only "Jane Says" was a lackluster bookend to a scintillating opening to the set.

Critic's Notebook

The Venue: The sound was excellent. Farrell has one of the more exceptional set of pipes in contemporary rock and his clarion calls are nothing short of epic. The Brick's sound system responded in kind, but several faults were apparent. Sight lines are difficult, if not impossible from the balcony; the sold-out crowd seemed too large for the venue; and ticketing logistics were regrettable as many were stuck in the rain waiting to get inside. The Brick will do well to work on these shortcomings, and its security staff should be commended for a job well done on opening night. Bottom line - the sound was fantastic.

The Audience: It had all the charm of a wet dog and one could reasonably expect better behavior in thunder dome. Amidst the reek of stank weed and wet clothing, a portion of the audience tried to dismantle drapery along the balcony, a particularly classy woman was seen throwing her drink at a bartender and a team of security guards had to escort one guy's impossibly limp body down the stairs and out the door. All of this says nothing about the general lack of concert-going etiquette one expects at a small venue. Jane's Addiction is built for a stadium. As fun as it is to see them in an intimate setting, it's quite another thing to negotiate close quarters with a glut of pin-balling, elbow-throwing fans.

Personal Bias: I saw Jane's Addiction ten months ago in front of about 500 people. It was incredible and for the first time in 18 years, I realized why people love the band. Monday started on the same note, but the momentum built during "Mountain Song" faded with each subsequent song. The set indeed came down the mountain, giving way to an anemic encore which, happily enough, was eclipsed by Pink Floyd's "Wish You Were Here" over the PA as the audience made its way to the door.

More here:
Jane's Addiction fans criticize the Brick, form "The Brick MN Sucks" site


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15 comments
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Cjfruen
Cjfruen

Worst venue in the city. Good news for the roy wilkins auditorium & the 400bar. The sound was not excellent as reported, it was terrible. The young woman reported to have thrown her drink @ the bartender, also not true. He threw it @ her. I know, I was standing next to her. We all got wet. Perry Farrell proved himself to be a true master of his trade, saving a total loss. One last thing, every good concert smells like great weed!

JEFF MUNSON
JEFF MUNSON

First off, the band opened with two Pink Floyd songs and the second one was " Welcome to the Machine". I would have been cool if J.A. included video clips, or something cool to accompany the P.F. songs (Like Roger Waters does), and also timed their stage entrance, in tune with the P.F. songs.Well, I have mixed feeling about this J.A. show. I liked the show, and I didn't. The show played off like a 45 record in 33 mode !!! It's sounded cool and artistic, listening to the band slow down their songs, in near perfect form, but it grew old fast! The band had plenty of energy, but used it mainly for stage performance, not song appeal. Their lack luster "artsey fartsey" performance isn't what I wanted to see and I felt ripped off. It felt like J.A. "Been Caught Stealing" my ticket money and laughing all the way to the bank! I wish I had stayed home and worked. Sorry Perry.  :(I didn't care for the venue either. It was too cramped and I was luck enough to see 50% of the stage at a crack. The air system blocked my view of the stage and so did the second floor balcony support pillers! Not cool !!! I've been to over 500 concerts all around the U.S.A. and this was the first time I liked and disliked the same show. That's the only reason I'll have to remember it. I wish I wasn't there !!!

JEFF MUNSON      Ashland, WI     trinkosausage@hotmail.com

Stevejones
Stevejones

The Brick sucks.  Minneapolis is a police state and it seemed mild and was welcome after leaving The Brick.  What a crap hole.  TSA security, Manhattan prices and you can't see the dang show. 

38
38

Jane's Addiction were in fine form last night. I do not agree with the reviewer at all when it comes to the band's performance last night. The set was great and for me peaked with "Three Days" which was incredible as always. The venue was horrible!! I was lucky enough to be down in front but this show would have been epic if were at the venue I first saw Jane's at, First Avenue. This place should sell no more than 1000 tickets max! Jane's Addiction: A. The Brick: F!

Super Disappointed
Super Disappointed

The venue proved itself as being motivated by money, NOT a positive guest experience. Whomever designed the layout forgot to realize how important it is for the audience to see the show! But lets still pack em' in...The ticket prices were outrageous for the experience! The only way a person could see the stage was to be in the very front of the main floor at the base of the stage, or if you were over 8 feet tall- then maybe you could see... ridiculous!!! And a bottled beer was $7 then poured into a plastic glass?- where are the taps? A small cocktail $6- maybe if the drink prices were lower people may be happier too, or may buy more than one drink... lame. I and my friends did walk out- and yes we were fully refunded- thank goodness, however all the other poor saps whom didn't realize there was a refund available continued to bare the uncomfortable conditions to justify spending $65- even if it meant staring at the back of heads or a cheap tv monitor instead of seeing what was happening on stage. HUGE DISAPPOINTMENT!

Disappointed Dickerson
Disappointed Dickerson

Look, everyone and everybody is ripping this place to shreds.  It would behoove City Pages to quit spinning it.  There is a tone of "poor peasants" in the story here.  I'm sure it was nice to bypass the line and get schmoozed up by the carpet baggers running this joint and get a sweet spot up front but you folks are seriously running on fumes in the credibility department.  I'm starting to think that Reed Fischer is the best entertainment writer in America but am really dismayed that he is not rubbing off on the other hacks at the paper.  Here is my free hint for you City Pages:  Try harder to be what you once were, an insightful commentary that was for the fan first and the corporate promoters second.  Every indication is that last night sucked.  Call it straight (when did you decide to become a mouthpiece for out of town corporate reporters?  this story is about how the Brick ain't so bad and not really much else)

HurdyGurdy
HurdyGurdy

This review was far more informative than the one at the Current website, which was full of exactly what you're calling for: complaining and complaining about a new, overpriced, and crowded venue. I read the Current piece, thought "I knew the Brick would be a terrible venue," then thought "what the hell is with the naked lady statues in that picture?"

Here, Rob makes an effort to explain what happened, how it felt/smelled/sounded, threw in some songs and interesting moments, AND described the crowded, difficult venue (as well as the giant naked ladies). I actually learned something about the show from this piece, not just about a venue that competes with First Ave and is too corporate for authentic indie fans that want to see authentic indie bands (filled with authentic indie millionaires and failed reality TV stars) like Jane's Addiction.

Great, fair, and well-rounded review of a dissapointing show. 

John Ferrin
John Ferrin

'Call it straight,' Interesting choice of words from someone hiding behind a screen name, unless your first name is actually Disappointed.

Oh It'sMe Alright
Oh It'sMe Alright

sorry pal, i don't care what you say unless you prove your identity with a photocopy of your driver license and social security card...  dumbass

Reed Fischer
Reed Fischer

Give me a break. Rob was honest about his experience, and he was actually there. I think he expressed some concern about the show, but didn't feel the need to crucify the place either.

Herb Has Questions
Herb Has Questions

ok, here's your break.  the comment under "audience" is what touched me off.  it had a let them eat cake feel 'those nasty audience members didnt know how good they had it'.  this coupled with the horrible slideshow piece the other day really do give me the feel that the slant was to promote the venue as the newspapers priority. 

Reed Fischer
Reed Fischer

 Actually, our priority is to promote the truth. Seems plausible that there were problems with *both* the venue and the people in attendance. People should not throw their drinks at each other even if they don't like the venue they're in. The rain probably didn't put anyone in a better mood either.

Also, a new venue is news, and there's nothing out of the ordinary about providing photographs. You are welcome to look at the many, many restaurant slideshows that City Pages runs.

BH
BH

My guess is that at 75% of the audience never saw the band.  It was the single worst place I have ever seen a show.  The sound was a disaster, the beer selection was lame and the workers/security seemed either belligerent or bored.  After waiting over an hour to get in and paying for their over-priced tickets and fees, I can't imagine a scenario I would ever step foot in there again.

guest
guest

I'm not sure how the sound could be considered fantastic.  It was, on top of the rest of the disappointments with the venue, the worst I've heard at a live show, probably ever.

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