BACK FROM VEGAS - Part 2 - Music stuff

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Hambone, Jun 28, 2003.

  1. More neat things from the city that never sleeps.

    We took in the Blue Man Group show at the Luxor on Wednesday night. This show was absolutely amazing and I would recommend to anyone to see it if they can. There are other troupes in Chicago and New York so get to the theater if you can.

    Blue Man Group is hard to explain if you've never seen them before. Their commercial work for IBM gives you just a glimpse of their focus but it's really not enough to draw a full picture of their act. This current show has quite a musical basis since the 3 Blue Men are all drummers. Aside from using various common percussion instruments, they also make their own wild instruments from PVC pipe. These are complete tonal arrays consisting of various length of pipe tuned to pitch and struck with mallets, foam paddles, and sticks. They also use flexible fiberglass rods that are swooshed through the air to make incredible sounds. The Blue Men on stage aren't the only musicians in the show. They had a 7 piece band consisting of 4 drummers, bass (Chapman stick too), guitar and keyboards all suspended high above the stage on the left and right. These musicians were support for the composition being played on stage. 2 of the drummers were using full kits while the other 2 were behind large arrangements of miscellaneous sized drums. This "wall of sound" was reinforced (like it needed to be?) with a sound system that completely shook the 3000 seat theater. The bass drum impacts could be felt in your intestines as much as they could be heard by your ears. Totally encompassing!

    A very funny part of the show was the 3 Blue Men standing on a riser behind 3 arrays of the pipes I mentioned above. The individual arrays were voiced as high, medium, and low. The ends of the pipes were open and pointed straight up and were played like a vibe but with a flat foam paddle slapped across the opening of the tube. When the light came up on them at their instruments, each Blue Man played a 2 or 3 bar phrase of tunes we all knew like the Marlboro theme or "Cars" from Gary Neumann. Then from the back of the theater, someone (a plant?) shouts out "FREEBIRD"!! The Blue Men stopped and looked at each other quizically. Then, slowly, 2 of them launch into Freebird! The third Blue Man didn't play though - he was holding a lighter over his head! Hilarious!!

    BTW, the trio has 2 CD's out that showcase their compositions with the weird instruments. Lots of cool low tones here but the compositions are somewhat simple - probably a result of them being created by drummers. Notwithstanding though, this was an incredible evening of audio, visual, and audience particiation that couldn't have been better.

    Yep, I came, I saw, and I got the T-shirt to prove it!