I was on the fence about this show ever since I heard that Incubus was coming back to town. Their new album Light Grenades was better than Crow Left of the Murder, but still didn’t match the intensity and songsmanship of Morning View, Make Yourself and S.C.I.E.N.C.E. all contemporary classics. However, when offered free tickets one does not bite the hand that feeds him. So, obviously I went and I’m glad I did.
The show opened with Strokes guitarist Albert Hammond Jr. and his side band. Thoroughly unimpressive! They were on the stage the right amount of time, just long enough for me to get a Super Burrito (I highly recommend w/ pollo…Good Times), a Caesar salad for my lady friend and a few beers. Then they were gone. In between sets, classic 80s tunes were playing. Flock of Seagulls, Human League, Soft Cell. BOOM!
The lights stagger out and a gentle hum emits from the stage. The band runs on stage and cranks into Anna Molly right off the bat. The crowd’s going crazy. People jumping around, the sweet odor of cannabis fills the air, and Brandon singing like there’s no tomorrow. A few more songs then Nice to Know You from Morning View starts and lights a flutter, crowd surfers waving their hands, mass hysteria dogs and cats living together…Ok maybe that’s a bit overboard but you get the picture. They play all the songs you want to hear except a few of the obscure favorites that everybody wants them to play for purely selfish reasons, but they haven’t played Drive.
Now, I’m sitting here thinking ok after the encore. Encore comes, they get back on stage and play two songs. I’m starting to worry, Drive is the reason some of these fans got into Incubus. Don’t you hate when a band doesn’t play the song you want to hear, because they’re sick of it? FEAR NOT! Out comes the roadie with an acoustic guitar and after an impromptu performance of Vince Guaraldi’s, “Linus and Lucy” on guitar, bass and drums…Ben (bassist), Jose (drummer) and Chris (DJ) leave the stage and Mike sits on a stool with an acoustic guitar and starts into what everyone has been waiting for…DRIVE! The lighters and cell phones come out and the all at once the crowd is one. The feelings of the day wash away. No thought of more troops being sent to die, no more worrying about the rent check just DRIVE. Take the wheel and steer.