Guided by Voices @ Motorco Music Hall – October 13th 2017

Guided By Voices @ Motorco - October 13th 2017

The Energizer bunny has nothing on indie rock icon, and Guided By Voices frontman, Robert Pollard. Shortly after the start of the year, Guided By Voices released their first double album August by Cake. In addition to being the 24th album released by Guided by Voices, August By Cake is also being touted as the 100th album recorded by Pollard. To say the man is prolific would be an understatement of epic proportions. You would think that Robert Pollard, who turns 60 later this month, would take some time to kick back and enjoy his monumental achievement… But, like the energizer bunny, he just keeps going and going. Only a few months after his 100th album, Pollard returned with yet another new Guided By Voices album, the 17-song, How Do You Spell Heaven, which was released this past August.

Not content to simply release album after album, Pollard, who is Guided By Voices founding and only consistent member has pulled together a new iteration of the band and spent a good portion of the year on the road taking the songs, both old and new, to the masses. The tour recently stopped at Motorco Music Hall in Durham NC where we caught the marathon of music that is a Guided By Voices show.

Without an opener, Guided By Voices hit the stage and started the evening with “Pearly Gates Smoke Machine” from their latest release, How Do You Spell Heaven. What was immediately apparent is that after all these years, Pollard has not lost a step. He still prowls the stage delivering solid vocals, spinning his microphone through the air with a dexterity that would make Roger Daltrey envious, and delivering the odd high kick that would generate a nod of approval from any of the Rockettes. The only potential nod to slowing down was the absence of Pollard’s customary cigarette. At one point a crowd member offered one up to Pollard, only to be told that he had given them up in the hope of hanging around a bit longer. While the cigarettes may be gone, the frontman has not totally turned his back on all of his vices. The legendary on stage drinking has not abated. Throughout the set, Pollard and his bandmates chugged from a bottle of tequila and often reached into an onstage cooler to pull out handy bottles of beer. Not one to be selfish, Pollard passed the tequila around the front of the crowd and even handed out beers to eager fans. Speaking of bandmates, the current version of Guided By Voices has taken a que from successful sports teams and found an ideal balance of aging veterans and eager new blood. The lineup behind Pollard consisted of GBV vets, Kevin March on drums and Doug Gillard on lead guitar, as well as fresh new blood in Bobby Bare Jr. on guitar and Mark Shue on bass.

The lineup’s newfound balance worked extremely well and the band fired on all cylinders. Their styles and backgrounds meshed into a solid common ground as they tore through an epic 50+ song setlist pulled from 29 years worth of music, encompassing all the GBV classics, fresh new songs, and even selections from Pollard’s solo career. The swirling sweat-soaked fans hung on every word and melody with a raucous moshpit forming in the middle of the crowd. For over 2 hours, Guided By Voices proved that they have the quality to match the quantity. They remain a live act to be reckoned with…

Check out the massive set list and photos below.

Pearly Gates Smoke Machine
Cretinous Number Ones
Cheap Buttons
King 007
Motor Away
The Birthday Democrats
Hiking Skin
Steppenwolf Mausoleum
I Am a Scientist
Try It Out (It’s Nothing)
Goodbye Note
Lord of Overstock
Paper Cutz
Low Flying Perfection
Cut-Out Witch
Diver Dan
How to Murder a Man (In 3 Acts)
5 Degrees on the Inside
Generox Grey
Echos Myron
West Coast Company Man
Warm Up to Religion
I Am a Tree
It’s Food
Sudden Fiction
Substitute 11
The Ticket Who Rallied
Tenth Century
A Salty Salute
Your Name Is Wild
Tropical Robots
My Valuable Hunting Knife
Escape to Phoenix
Just to Show You
Gold Star for Robot Boy
The Goldheart Mountaintop Queen Directory
Love Is Stronger Than Witchcraft
Jane of the Waking Universe
Game of Pricks
Tractor Rape Chain
Glad Girls
How Do You Spell Heaven
Circus Day Holdout
Psychic Pilot Clocks Out
Back to the Lake
My Zodiac Companion
Navigating Flood Regions
Tabby & Lucy
Teenage FBI
Saturday’s Child
Don’t Stop Now
Baba O’Riley

Guided by Voices @ Motorco Music Hall – October 13th 2017

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