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Best Of 2006: Live Shows

Top 25 Live Shows


1. PERNICE BROTHERS at The Mercury Lounge, NYC, December 8
2. THE AVENGERS at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, September 9
3. NEW YORK DOLLS at South Street Seaport, NYC, August 18
4. PRIESTESS at The Mercury Lounge, NYC, May 11
5. P.M. DAWN at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, August 2
6. THE HOLD STEADY at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, November 24
7. MY MORNING JACKET at Roseland, NYC, November 30
8. ROBYN HITCHCOCK & THE VENUS 3 at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, November 8
9. BEN KWELLER at Webster Hall, NYC, October 20
10. JESSE MALIN and MATT AZZARTO at The Goldhawk, September 8

11. HAMELL ON TRIAL at Comix, NYC, November 29
12. RAY LAMONTAGNE at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, August 27
13. MAGNET at The Living Room, NYC, March 21
14. SCREEN TEST at Shifty’s, Syracuse, N.Y., July 21
15. HOPE AND ANCHOR at Flicker, Athens, Ga., June 17
16. ROONEY at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, July 17
17. STEVE GOODMAN TRIBUTE SHOW (VARIOUS ARTISTS) at The Living Room, NYC, June 7
18. RHETT MILLER at Webster Hall, NYC, April 13
19. THE KILLERS at Webster Hall, NYC, September 22
20. TRIS MCCALL & THE NEW JACK TRIPPERS and CHARLES BISSELL at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, June 24

21. PEELANDER-Z and THE WATERFRONT DUO at Maxwell's, December 12
22. CJ RAMONE & DANIEL REY WITH WALTER LURE, HANDSOME DICK MANITOBA’S BAND, and LENNY KAYE at The Continental, NYC, September 17
23. RYE COALITION, GROUP SOUNDS, and SHELBY at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, January 13
24. SOUL ASYLUM at Irving Plaza, NYC, August 3
25. FOO FIGHTERS and FRANK BLACK at The Beacon Theater, NYC, August 23


Also Worthy
THE FAVE at Maxwell’s, Hoboken, December 1
BILL MCGARVEY at Hoboken Arts & Music Festival, Hoboken, September 17
BEDSIT POETS at The Goldhawk, Hoboken, February 8


Penelope Houston’s new Avengers bring out a version of the punk ethos at its best, one that seeks to create good more than to destroy evil. The Dolls repeated the same set they’d done at the Seaport a month later at the Hoboken Arts & Music festival, and not only was the city show a hair better, it also lacked Sylvain’s asinine comment introducing the band’s song “Trash,” to the effect that the its title was “no reflection on this town.” Gee, Syl, thanks so much for feeling the need to state outright that Hoboken is not trash. Funny, I don’t think any of the thousands of people in attendance needed such a clarification. Whatever.

P.M. Dawn was the weirdest show I’ve seen at Maxwell’s since a February 2002 set by Brian Jonestown Massacre, an oddly similar, sprawling, three-hour mess that was equal parts euphorically great and offensively horrible. Months later at the same venue, it was amusing to see Peter Buck of the Venus 3 standing near the merch table to catch a few minutes of an opening band, while no one approached him. Jesse Malin absolutely owned a hushed back room at The Goldhawk, and Ray LaMontagne did the same a few short blocks away. The gentle brilliance of Hope And Anchor was a highlight of my first-ever night in Athens. Steve Goodman’s sly songs stand the tough test of time.The Killers live show has improved drastically in the space of two years.

Peelander-Z and The Waterfront Duo both must be experienced to be believed, and even then it's not unreasonable to momentarily question how they could both be so brilliant. On the last night of live music at The Continental, Handsome Dick’s declaration that that punk rock was gonna be ok, even with the closing of that venue and CBGB, felt reassuring. A lonely Frank Black, on a Beacon stage that seemed way too large, played an inspired acoustic set that very few people bothered to witness. And yes, those stunning Pernice Brothers outdid them all.




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