Opinions

Wrapping Up 2014

happy 2014

As the year winds to an end, I found myself reflecting on 2014.

This was a great year for live music, many amazing acts were out on tour and I was lucky enough to catch a few of them in the act.

I scanned through my list of shows and started to reminisce. Remembering bands that just blew me away, and others that left me feeling less than fulfilled.

It was quite the year.

Here is the complete list of acts I was able to check out in 2014.

ArtistDateVenue
Amy SchumnerJanuary 10, 2014Tulalip Casino Resort
Mark NormandJanuary 10, 2014Tulalip Casino Resort
Panic! At The DiscoJanuary 15, 2014Commodore Ballroom
The ColouristJanuary 15, 2014Commodore Ballroom
AugustinesFebruary 5, 2014Venue
My GoodnessFebruary 5, 2014Venue
Biffy ClyroFebruary 8, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Morning ParadeFebruary 8, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Zakk WyldeFebruary 13, 2014Commodore Ballroom
PixiesFebruary 17, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Children Of BodomFebruary 25, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Fever The GhostFebruary 26, 2014Venue
The FratellisFebruary 26, 2014Venue
Army Of The UniverseFebruary 28, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Skinny PuppyFebruary 28, 2014Commodore Ballroom
BlondfireMarch 18, 2014Venue
The SoundsMarch 18, 2014Venue
Against Me!March 26, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Laura StevensonMarch 26, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Kenny HotzMarch 31, 2014The Vogue Theatre
London GrammarMarch 31, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Spencer RiceMarch 31, 2014The Vogue Theatre
Kid InkApril 1, 2014Commodore Ballroom
King LosApril 1, 2014Commodore Ballroom
CrossesApril 2, 2014Venue
Vance JoyApril 2, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Young The GiantApril 2, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Sharon Jones & The Dap KingsApril 5, 2014Commodore Ballroom
TemplesApril 8, 2014Biltmore Cabaret
Hallow MoonApril 8, 2014Biltmore Cabaret
Ellie GouldingApril 24, 2014Orpheum Theatre
together PANGEAApril 24, 2014Venue
White LiesApril 24, 2014Venue
Franz FerdinandApril 25, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Higgins Waterproof Black Magic BandApril 25, 2014The Media Club
The WantedApril 25, 2014Orpheum Theatre
PennywiseApril 30, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Teenage BottlerocketApril 30, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Ingrid MichaelsonMay 2, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Expendable YouthMay 22, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Brody DalleMay 23, 2014Venue
City And ColourMay 23, 2014Deer Lake Park
Die AntwoordMay 23, 2014Commodore Ballroom
ElbowMay 23, 2014Commodore Ballroom
First Aid KitMay 23, 2014The Vogue Theatre
John GrantMay 23, 2014Commodore Ballroom
BanksMay 24, 2014Venue
Band Of SkullsMay 28, 2014Commodore Ballroom
We Hunt BuffaloMay 28, 2014Commodore Ballroom
ArkellsJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
Chad VanGaalenJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
Dan Mangan + BlacksmithJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
Laura MannJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
SpoonJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
Tegan and SaraJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
The Belle GameJune 14, 2014Deer Lake Park
The NeighbourhoodJune 21, 2014Malkin Bowl
CappadonnaJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
DJ MathematicsJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Ghostface KillahJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
GZAJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Inspectah DeckJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Masta KillaJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
RaekwonJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
RZAJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
U-GodJune 28, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Mark LaneganJune 30, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Nick Cave & The Bad SeedsJune 30, 2014Orpheum Theatre
BlondfireJuly 12, 2014Imperial
KongosJuly 12, 2014Imperial
BlondieJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Cage the ElephantJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Empire of the SunJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
G-EazyJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Jim BreuerJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Kendrick LamarJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Nine Inch NailsJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Rich AucoinJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
SoundgardenJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Tyler, The CreatorJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Yukon BlondeJuly 18, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Chance The RapperJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Deadmau5July 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Dinosaur Jr.July 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Gold & YouthJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
HaydenJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Lisa LampanelliJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
MetzJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Natasha LeggeroJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Snoop DoggJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
The Flaming LipsJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
The New PornographersJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
TV on the RadioJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Violent FemmesJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Wild BelleJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Young The GiantJuly 19, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Brian PosehnJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Daniel LanoisJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Fucked UpJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Hallelujah TrainJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Hey Rosetta!July 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Jay PharoahJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
JusticeJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Lindsey StirlingJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Modest MouseJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
OutkastJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Pastor Brady BladeJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
RebelutionJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
St. VincentJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
The Madd WikkidJuly 20, 2014Pemberton Grounds
Spoon RiverJuly 30, 2014Rickshaw Theatre
The War On DrugsJuly 30, 2014Rickshaw Theatre
Echo and the BunnymenAugust 5, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Bruno MarsAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Foster The PeopleAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
July TalkAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Mayer HawthorneAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
NASAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Serena RyderAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
The CourtneysAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
The ZolasAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Walk Off The EarthAugust 8, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Arcade FireAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
AustraAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Black Joe LewisAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Broken BellsAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
ChvrchesAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
HolleradoAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Sam Roberts BandAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
The RootsAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Tokyo Police ClubAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
WildlifeAugust 9, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Arctic MonkeysAugust 10, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
AtmosphereAugust 10, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Project 46August 10, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
The Temper TrapAugust 10, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Thievery CorporationAugust 10, 2014Logger Sports Grounds and Hendrickson Fields
Tom Petty and The HeartbreakersAugust 14, 2014Rogers Arena
SlashAugust 15, 2014Hard Rock Casino Vancouver
BeckAugust 19, 2014Deer Lake Park
Jenny LewisAugust 19, 2014Deer Lake Park
Animal Liberation OrchestraAugust 21, 2014Deer Lake Park
Jack JohnsonAugust 21, 2014Deer Lake Park
Curtis HardingAugust 28, 2014Deer Lake Park
Jack WhiteAugust 28, 2014Deer Lake Park
PassengerSeptember 7, 2014Malkin Bowl
The OnceSeptember 7, 2014Malkin Bowl
FerrasSeptember 10, 2014Rogers Arena
Katy PerrySeptember 10, 2014Rogers Arena
Tegan and SaraSeptember 10, 2014Rogers Arena
AirbourneSeptember 13, 2014Commodore Ballroom
The ElwinsSeptember 13, 2014Electric Owl
The Glorious SonsSeptember 13, 2014Commodore Ballroom
ZeusSeptember 13, 2014Electric Owl
La RouxSeptember 18, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Midnight MagicSeptember 18, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Die AntwoordSeptember 23, 2014PNE Forum
BroodsSeptember 24, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Sam SmithSeptember 24, 2014Orpheum Theatre
Linus YoungSeptember 27, 2014Venue
Tove LoSeptember 27, 2014Venue
Blood Or WhiskeySeptember 29, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Dropkick MurphysSeptember 29, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Amon AmarthOctober 1, 2014Commodore Ballroom
SabatonOctober 1, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Cat PowerOctober 2, 2014Commodore Ballroom
VorheesOctober 2, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Adelitas WayOctober 5, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Falling Through AprilOctober 5, 2014Commodore Ballroom
The Pretty RecklessOctober 5, 2014Commodore Ballroom
American AuthorsOctober 8, 2014The Vogue Theatre
ConstantinesOctober 8, 2014Commodore Ballroom
EchosmithOctober 8, 2014The Vogue Theatre
LadyhawkOctober 8, 2014Commodore Ballroom
The MowglisOctober 8, 2014The Vogue Theatre
MisterwivesOctober 10, 2014The Rio Theatre
Twenty One PilotsOctober 10, 2014The Rio Theatre
Vinyl TheatreOctober 10, 2014The Rio Theatre
HozierOctober 20, 2014Commodore Ballroom
James BayOctober 20, 2014Commodore Ballroom
King TuffOctober 24, 2014Fortune Sound Club
La SeraOctober 24, 2014Fortune Sound Club
The KillsOctober 26, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Baby in VainOctober 26, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Kid KoalaNovember 4, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Deltron 3030November 4, 2014Commodore Ballroom
New PoliticsNovember 5, 2014The Rio Theatre
Bad SunsNovember 5, 2014The Rio Theatre
The WytchesNovember 5, 2014The Media Club
The JoltsNovember 9, 2014Rickshaw Theatre
MisfitsNovember 9, 2014Rickshaw Theatre
All Them WitchesNovember 9, 2014The Cobalt
Theory Of A DeadmanNovember 11, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Head Of The HerdNovember 11, 2014Commodore Ballroom
GWARNovember 14, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Corrosion Of ConformityNovember 14, 2014Commodore Ballroom
The 1975November 14, 2014The Vogue Theatre
Vance JoyNovember 16, 2014Commodore Ballroom
Jaymes YoungNovember 16, 2014Commodore Ballroom
BastilleNovember 24, 2014PNE Forum
GrizfolkNovember 24, 2014PNE Forum
Taylor BerrettNovember 24, 2014Venue
Alex ClareNovember 24, 2014Venue
Jazzmanian DevilsNovember 26, 2014Commodore Ballroom
WatskyDecember 2, 2014The Vogue Theatre
KyleDecember 2, 2014The Vogue Theatre
Anderson PaakDecember 2, 2014The Vogue Theatre
SumacDecember 4, 2014Rickshaw Theatre
BalanceDecember 4, 2014Rickshaw Theatre
Allah-lasDecember 4, 2014Electric Owl
Tashaki MiyakiDecember 4, 2014Electric Owl
Imagine DragonsDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
WeezerDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
Cage the ElephantDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
Young The GiantDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
TV on the RadioDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
KongosDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
Vance JoyDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
Royal BloodDecember 9, 2014KeyArena
PhantogramDecember 14, 2014The Vogue Theatre
MountiesDecember 14, 2014The Vogue Theatre
Dear RougeDecember 14, 2014The Vogue Theatre

Some bands were superb, and definitely shone brightly. I racked my brain for hours trying to come up with my top 5 favourites. When I narrowed it down to the top 15, that’s when thing got really tough. Would the high-energy deliveries beat out the passionate sets with the immaculate vocals. I really hated the process while I was going through it, but when I reached the end of the tunnel I was happy with my choices.

Here are my favourite 5 performances of 2014.

  1. Jack White & Curtis Harding @ Deer Lake Park:
    For me, this one was a no-brainer. Jack White is on top of his game. This 2014 tour was fuelled by his latest album as a solo artist, Lazaretto. The night started off with the soulful stylings of Mr. Curtis Harding. He brought Sam Cooke like vocals mixed with fuzzy American blues guitar and delivered them with pure passion. It was the perfect way to ride out the daylight, while we laid in the grass. As the night rolled in, Mr. White took to the stage and served up an electric set. His fierce guitar delivery and aggressively growled vocals were made even more intense by his spastic movement around the stage. All this even though he sported an ankle wrap from a sprain a few days earlier. I watched in awe from the crowd, only feet from the stage, as he feverishly danced around, favouring his good leg, but still seeming to have this serene smile commonly slung across his face. He fought through the pain, and brought a beautiful musical bounty to those in attendance. I walked away from this set with an even greater appreciation for this man.
  2. Sam Smith & Broods @ Orpheum Theatre:
    I knew very little about New Zealand’s Broods before walking into this show. The moment lead singer Georgia Nott started to sing, I was swept away. The balance of electro-pop and delicate vocals won me over. Watching them live made the music even more alluring, their beats stirred me up and energized me. While those beautiful vocals left me inspired. After all that, there was still the headliner, Sam Smith. This was the first time I have ever seen an artist at the Orpheum Theatre and, while they were performing, thought the venue was far too small for them. His exquisite vocals powered through that theatre. He only played for a little less than an hour, but it was one of the most touching and personal performances I have seen in a long time. His vocals shook my soul.
  3. Die Antwoord @ Commodore Ballroom:
    I have been trying to photograph Die Antwoord for a few years now. He has always been on my bucket list. I went into the Commodore Ballroom with the expectation of getting some quirky shots of some interesting characters. I knew the music, but I never considered what to expect at a live show. Within the first song Ninja and Yolandi Visser were all over that stage; jumping and dancing at a feverish pace. Midway through the second song, Ninja came in for a closeup peering a foot a way from the lens of my camera, as I focused and framed the shot he came closer and actually climbed on top of me. It was an indicator of the bedlam that was about to ensue. Ninja and Yoandi put forth this vigorous presentation with a feeling of calculated anarchy, as DJ Hi-Tek blasted the house with aggressive beats. The audience was fuelled into a mania. The show was stylistically beautiful as well, with intensely complimentary coloured lights painting the room at all times. It was a heart pounding good time.
  4. Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds & Mark Lanegan @ Orpheum Theatre:
    The night started off with a chaotic rush into the theatre. I had never seen either artist live, and was anticipating and solid set from each. Lanegan came out to the stage. It was just him at the microphone and his accompanying guitarist to his right. He delved into a delightful, heartfelt set that made the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. His minimalist approach emphasized the haunting, emotional depth in his vocals. It was a beautifully sweet set. The night then switched into high gear, as Nick Cave and his bevy of fellow musician took over the stage. We all watched on as Cave fired through his program like a machine gun. Attacking each song with fervor and explosive energy. Nick worked around the stage, stirring up the crowd. It was like watching a madman deliver a sermon. I was enthralled by the whole thing. This show allowed me to make the decision that I will never miss another Nick Cave or Mark Lanegan show I have an opportunity to attend.
  5. Constantines & Ladyhawk @ Commodore Ballroom:
    This last spot on the list was the hardest to fill, but in the end I had to give it up to these two great Canadian bands. When I walked into the Commodore Ballroom, Ladyhawk was just taking the stage. This local band has been high on my radar. I have seen them a few times and they always deliver. On this night in particular though, everything was firing perfectly. The set started off at a steady steam, gaining momentum from the energy from the crowd. The emotion on stage started to overflow. It poured through the amps, driving the audience into a frenzy. I was locked in the moment, jumping around in the unified mass, as Ladyhawk delivered a jangly, rocket-fuelled performance that left me flabbergasted. With a very little wait for the headliner, soon the Constantines took over the stage and carried on with the energy in the air. From the first note of the first song, the presentation was as heartfelt as the come. You could feel this from-the-heart sincerity accompanying everything happening on stage. Within the raucous rock, you could see these jubilant smiles strewn across the bands faces. The whole spectacle was topped by the response from those in attendance. Everyone got lost in the music that night. I went home with a smile for having witnessed, and participated in, it.

So as you can see the list isn’t a huge surprise, many of these were obvious choices, but just because they are obvious doesn’t mean they don’t deserve their position.

Some honourable mentions I would like to point out are Biffy Clyro @ Commodore Ballroom, Kongos @ Imperial, Dropkick Murphys @ Commodore Ballroom, and The Wytches @ The Media Club. Each of these bands respective shows were amazing, and they were just squeaked out of the top 5.

Another thing I want to talk about was the music of 2014. Many, many, many bands released wonderful albums this year. From Lost In The Dream by The War On Drugs to Manipulator by Ty Segall, there was something new for everyone.

Some songs stuck with me, and some of them faded away. The song that stuck with me the most was The Black Keys – Weight Of Love. It has that ageless feel to it, it has the lyrical subject matter, and it has the goddamn crescendo around the 5 minute mark that makes me lose my fucking mind. It doesn’t matter how many times I listen to it, when that crescendo hits, I am taking away to a better place. The sad part is I had to miss there show in Vancouver due to illness.

king tuff 2014 tour posterThe last thing I want to touch on is concert posters. More and more bands are starting to serve up venue/date specific posters to their shows, many of them limited edition and signed and numbered by the artist. To the bands doing this, I say kudos. As an avid poster and print collector, I love that this idea is taking off with more musicians.

I acquired many amazing prints this year, and hope that more bands will jump on the wagon next year. Bands should look to the Pearl Jams, My Morning Jackets and Jack Whites of the world, as these guys always have date/venue specific posters, and its something special the fans really love about these groups.

If you want more information for your favourite bands, check out expressobeans.com.

So 2014 was a great year. I was able to take in some stellar shows, grab some sweet pictures and grow my poster collection.

I hope 2015 brings us more of the same.

To all you out there that may take a minute to read this, I thank you.

Without you, this site would be nothing.

If you have a second, let me know in the comments below your thoughts. I would really like to know what concert everyone else loves this year.

Cheers.

Comments
To Top