Pillows Concert

“Ride a shooting star…”


This is our only photo of the concert.  An employee of the venue saw us snap it during the soundcheck and politely informed us that pictures were not allowed.  It’s a shame because we could have documented a brilliant performance.

The Pillows, best known in the U.S. for the soundtrack to the anime FLCL, originally formed in Hokkaido in 1989.  How do they sound 19 years later?  Fantastic.  They promptly shredded through their first set at 7:00 without the buildup of a warm-up act.  Two hours and two encores later they were still going strong.

This was easily one of the best concerts I’ve ever attended.  The Pillows sound fantastic live but they also have stage presence.  Sawao Yamanaka, the lead vocalist, brought the house down with his energy and witty banter between songs.

However, what really separated tonight from other concert experiences in the past was not the band but the audience.  I’ve attended more than a few concerts in Portland dominated by younger folks who would rather text friends on their mobile phones than watch the performer.  In the U.S. there is an overall sense of “entertain me, please!”  Tonight there was no moping.  All of us participated and let the band know how much we appreciated their music.  In between sets when the band members would drink water and wipe the sweat from their faces, the audience was silent.  No texting, no chatting, not even a loud shout requesting a classic track.  The Pillows had our respect and attention before they ever took the stage.  They did not play “Ride a Shooting Star” for us, but in the end we didn’t need it.

The Pillows are currently on tour supporting their latest album Pied Piper.  It’s a winner.

Before the show I bought this t-shirt.  "Purple Apple" is my favorite track from the new record.

Before the show I bought this t-shirt. "Purple Apple" is my favorite track off the new record.

After the show we grabbed some pizza with four other ALTs.  Two of them had already joined us for the concert.  Then we found a giant glowing couch.

Not digitally altered.


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2 Responses to “Pillows Concert”

  1. peter Says:

    I must have that couch.

    …does it come in blue?

  2. pacificloons Says:

    it changes color depending on your mood.

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