Santa Barbara

The Coach House

September 14th 1999

Kai Ponte
For those who are keeping track of such things, my humble (but accurate) review of last night's show...

The Good:

Marty seemed really pleased with himself during the show. He appeared to be joking with the audience at several points and appeared to be enjoying the extensive solos during Grind, Destination, Tantalized and the others. At the end of the main set, he gave his guitar to some audience members who kindly returned it to their roadie dude.

Myrrh! Honestly, this is my first Church show. For various reasons, I had never been able to see them live before. Now I've seen Myrrh live. I can die peacefully.

Hiroshima Mon Amor... I thought this was a great opening number. Unfortunately, most of the people around me didn't know it, but I could tell a few people enjoyed it.

No smoking. I was dreading going into a club I hadn't been to in over ten years, thinking that I'd come out reeking like cigarretts. Thank goodness for no smoking laws.

I gave the Seance web address to seven different groups of people who were interested.

The Bad:

During the first half of Tantalized, Peter's guitar seemed to have some kind of problem. It took them almost a minute to replace it with another, during which time the song just didn't live up to expectations. Marty was still going berzerk on the rhythm, but you could tell something was missing.

Not enough songs from ABOB. My memory fails me, but I think they only did three off the new album. One guy who went to the HOB tour said this set was half as long as that one...

...too short. I was hoping for more than a two-song encore. It was only about 11:45 and they called it quits. Oh well, it had been a long day anyway.

The Ugly:

The audience. Steve commented early on about the audience, asking what they had eaten. It appeared most of them were asleep! Now, this club has a lot of tables for eating before the show, but people could stand up. I did. One person who had been to the San Diego show said that the audience looked like they were on downers by comparison. I felt really bad for the group.

The sound. Yikes! Do these club people know how bad their clubs sound?

The second opening band. I went outside for this one. Think a cross between Ride and Ozzy Ozborne with a little Husker Du thrown in. Only they had not nearly the talent. These guys had no clue. The first band (I had seen them before) was much better.

There you go... Enjoy the rest of the shows! I won't be able to get to any other ones, due to travel arrangements.


Brian Martin

The first show of the new tour started in Santa Barbara in a great place called the Coach House, which holds 250. There were about 80 at the show though. There were 2 opening bands one of which was inadvertently a joke partly because of their singer who sang like Kim Carnes but had the moves/looks of Darhma. Their first song was "The Sound-Check Song" and it was true to it's name. This was their first public show and they got to open for the Church?! Marty was in the bar watching and was just as confounded.

Okay, the band showed up about 5pm and they looked a bit weary so I didn't approach them to sign stuff. One by one as they would step outside to have a smoke (smoking in Kalifornia is strictly regulated) I'd have them sign stuff. I asked Steve if I could watch the sound check. He said "Sure, I don't mind". Once they all got up there Steve started singing and playing "Hang On Sloopey" in a subdued manner for about a minute. They went on to play "Two Places at Once" and a new song. Throughout the sound-check, Marty had monitor problems and would temporarily leave the stage. Finally it was fixed but at the end of the evening, it proved to be a omen.

Prior to the show Marty was in the bar being very animated and having a few drinks. He stayed so long in fact that he changed his shirt in the bar as the rest of the band was walking on stage. The band was 'dialed-in' beautifully. Marty carried the bar enthusiasm onto stage and was having lots of fun. He was joking with the audience, making faces and when a girl tried to return a hardpick he had dropoped he told her, "Softer is better!". Everyone laughed and Peter smirked. It was the first time I got to hear Tim playing live and he's a technical drummer. He's really amazing and his drum kit doesn't obscure him from the crowd.

The set list;

Now here's the ugly part. Marty's previous monitor problems came back during Myrrh. At the end of the song Marty stormed off stage and Steve announced 'goodnight'. The show was over. We were cheated of 4 songs. Day of the Dead, Reptile, Cortez and Silver Machine. No encores. This happened before when I saw them at the Roxy in LA starting the Starfish tour. I don't remember at what point Marty walked, but it was for the same reason.

It would have been terrific if Steve had come out back out and done a couple of tunes for us but that was not to be.

Just before the Church went on, a table was set up selling CD's and Steve's latest book "Nineveh. I wasn't going to buy it originally, because it is sold out of the UK and getting international money orders is a pill. So I got the book ($20 autographed !) and "Tygs in Space" ($15). A great deal.

They were also selling Refo:mation, Love Era, Seeing Stars, Box of Birds and a Margot Smith CD

As things go with tours they may not have a huge supply and may run out at some point.

So, DO see them there always a great live and I think this was just a freak incident.

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