Dedicated to Kere, Wong, Menon and Budin

The original dates for their 2007 UK tour.

This would’ve been my third Incubus gig. The potential first was in 2002 when Hoobastank was supporting (Incubus-like supporting Incubus – no shame one!) but I had to miss it due to a more pressing family matter. I finally saw them in 2004, but for those who know the significance of that year for yours truly, I had to say that it was the least enjoyable gig that I’ve been to ever, and it had absolutely nothing to do with the band (just see the nonchalance and brevity of this post). For their tour supporting Light Grenades I finally got standing tix for Nottingham only to see it being postponed due to Mike Einziger’s hand op. In the meantime, I also noted that Make Yourself Foundation was auctioning 25 pairs of tix which includes a meet ‘n greet sesh with the band. Luck had it that I chose one of the items that had no bidders, and winning it at a cost of a mere 28 squids per tix!

We were greeted by a member of the crew who brought us to see Brandon Boyd et al. There was like only 16 of us which was great as it shouldn’t be too long drawn of an affair. The band was very friendly and I found myself speaking more at length with Mike and Brandon. Mike showed me his scar for the carpal tunnel syndrome op he had 6 months ago, and told me it took him three months to recover and been finally be able to play. I asked Brandon if he remembered how to say thanks in Malay (as he did countless times in their 2004 live in Malaysia bootleg). He couldn’t and after reminding him, his eyes lit up and remembered, apologetically saying that he had to have someone teach him to say that at the Bukit Kiara gig. Didn’t say much else to José, Ben and Kilgore as I wasn’t a drummer / not that much of a bass player / me a DJ? Nope. They signed our cards nonetheless and we took a group pic. I think I did a real poyo pose, and somewhat not really looking forward to see it when MYF sends it over (Wong, I stood next to José Pasillas II. I’m so sorry, dude.).

The opener was Puggy.They were kinda OK although all their songs were a bit same-ish. A three-piece with an acoustic guitarist backed by real hard-hitting yet refined drums, with a tinge of Matt Bellamy in the singing at times. Boleh la – we were munching on our second set of burgers comfortably in our seats by then.

Incubus kicked off at 9pm with the reverberating Quicksand followed by the rockin’ Kiss to Send Us Off. Just like the CD, in fact. A surprisingly and welcoming early Wish You Were Here followed later (quite a few choice tracks from Morning View this evening, really), and to finally hear Anna Molly (sung “anomaly” more prominently this time) was just neck wrenching.

I was basically going “oh, f[lip]” or “oh, shi[kes]” with tracks that really got me going (due to my brief experience jamming with Menon and Wong), namely Circles, Drive, Megalomaniac, Nice To Know You. Sick Sad Little World played live was just the ultimate experience. My excuse for not being to play that tune on the bass that very well is the inability to stretch. Then again, there’s this thing called practice.

As usual, the head stops feng tau-ing when there is an unfamiliar tune, aka old material which you’ve probably heard in a CD you bought just for the sake of completion. Vitamin is a recurrent old staple, as it showcases Brandon’s and José’s synchronous percussion on the djembe and drumkit, respectively, whilst Here In My Room (okay, not that old) saw Mike on the keyboards. Also, Beware! Criminal has now become my new favourite ACLOTM track.

Throughout the evening, Mike played a Gibson SG. And he was using a Marshall stack and an AC30. Gone are the eponymous PRS-Mesa combos! Mike brought his pipa out and ended their set with the sublime Aqueous Transmission. Each member of the band then left the stage one by one to the sound of croaking frogs. Not too long of an arena set and we wished they had played more stuff from Make Yourself or S.C.I.E.N.C.E. but what the hey, this turned out to be one of my favourite gigs I’ve been to.

Ice Arena, Nottingham 21.09.07 set: Quicksand / A Kiss To Send Us Off / Wish You Were Here / Anna Molly / Pistola / Vitamin / Circles / Here In My Room / Drive / Megalomaniac / Sick Sad Little World / Oil and Water / Nice To Know You // Favorite Things / Beware! Criminal / Aqueous Transmission


Apologies for the pic quality, the N95 isn’t up to scratch with its digital zoom!