2013 concerts wish list

A year ago I made some kind of wish list of artists I was hoping to see play live in 2012. Unsurprisingly, my hit rate was very low, with only two of my 12 wishes (Peter Hammill and Tindersticks) being fulfilled. I can’t really complain, though, since I did see a slew of great shows this year (see Concerts of 2012).

Ever the optimist, here are 15 artists I would like to see in 2013. Once again, these are all artists who tour on a regular basis and whom I have not seen for a good long time (in a few cases, never). Most of them are repeated from the previous list, and there are some new names as well. Dead Can Dance have dropped off the list because, even though I didn’t see them this year, they are coming to Vienna in 2013.

1. Okkervil River

2. Gillian Welch

3. Kathleen Edwards

4. The Hold Steady

5. Home Service

6. The Dirty Three

7. Einstürzende Neubauten seen, 27 June 2015

8. Spiritualized

9. Cowboy Junkies

10. Richard Youngs seen, 12 February 2017

11. Lucinda Williams

12. Van der Graaf Generator seen, 16 June 2013

13. Richard Thompson

14. Six Organs of Admittance

15. Low

Concerts of 2012

Here’s some kind of list of the most memorable concerts I attended this year. (By the way, you won’t find a list of albums of the year here. I hardly ever listen to recorded music any more; increasingly, music to me means live music.)

It’s been an excellent year for my kind of music in Vienna, and shows by The Walkabouts, Tindersticks, Shearwater, The Cherry Thing and Bruce Springsteen might all have made the top ten on a different day. I was also gutted to miss, for one reason or another (work, illness, domestic commitments) many shows which I was looking forward to, including those by Brötzmann/Lonberg-Holm/Nilssen-Love, Death in June, Broken Heart Collector, Bulbul/Tumido, The Thing, Kern & Quehenberger, Sonore, Nadja, Josephine Foster, Double Tandem, Kurzmann/Zerang/Gustafsson, Glen Hansard and A Silver Mt Zion, not to mention the entire Konfrontationen festival.

A few of the concerts listed here have links to the reviews I wrote at the time, but most of them do not. This is partly because I haven’t had time to write those reviews, but mostly because it’s getting harder and harder to keep this blog going, to the point where I’m considering giving it up altogether. Very few people read these pages, and of those who do, only a few bother to leave comments. Those people, and they know who they are, have my eternal gratitude; but it’s rather disheartening not to be making more of an impression on the wider world.

In chronological order, then:

1. Philip Glass: Einstein on the Beach, Barbican Centre, London
2. Codeine, Szene Wien, Vienna
3. Peter Brötzmann’s Full Blast, Chelsea, Vienna
4. Anthony Braxton, Jazzatelier, Ulrichsberg
5. Peter Hammill, Porgy & Bess, Vienna
6. The Thing, Blue Tomato, Vienna
7. Marilyn Crispell/Eddie Prévost/Harrison Smith, Blue Tomato, Vienna
8. Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet, Martinschlössl, Vienna
9. Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Arena, Vienna
10. Swans, Arena, Vienna

Marilyn Crispell/Harrison Smith/Eddie Prévost, Vienna Blue Tomato, 4 November 2012

The Blue Tomato in Vienna is thirty years old this year, an anniversary well worth celebrating. Ken Vandermark has described it as one of the best jazz clubs in the world, and who am I to disagree, especially given the number of incredible gigs I’ve seen there over the years. Going there with Jandek to see The Thing was an especially memorable occasion, but there have been many others. My first visit to the Tomato was for the legendary (and now, it seems, defunct) duo of Peter Brötzmann and Han Bennink in 2007, and most of my evenings there since have included one or more of Brötzmann, Vandermark, Mats Gustafsson and Paal Nilssen-Love in some combination or other. Here was something very different, though: to mark the 30th birthday celebrations, and also the tenth anniversary of the Soundgrube piano festival, a trio featuring pianist Marilyn Crispell in collaboration with AMM percussionist Eddie Prévost and British saxophonist Harrison Smith.

Continue reading