Thursday, April 22, 2010
Metheny at the Paramount
Went to see Pat Metheny at the wonderful Paramount Theater here in Austin on his Orchestrion tour. Not having heard the new album at the time, I wasn't quite sure what to expect and Pat spent some time trying without much success to explain to the audience how it all worked. He appeared on stage alone, slowly revealing more and more of the accompanying technology surrounding him that allowed him to create the equivalent of a band: drums, synthesizers, other guitar parts, bass etc. It made for interesting visuals too, a drum kit separated out into one stick and one percussive item per frame, stacked up behind him with robotic hands pulsing out the rhythm. He mixed it up and threw in some oldies and some improvisations as well as the whole new album, and as always, he was his charming self who let his playing do most of the talking for over 2.5 hours. Great musician, great venue, decent sonics for an amplified show and a glass of wine made this a far more pleasant experience than some gigs. But, and it's a big but - throw in parking, ticket convenience fees (!), a sitter etc. and the whole evening set me back $200 for two. Live music is essential but who can afford this level of regular attendance?