Mudhoney + Precious Jules @ The Zoo, 05.12.2011

Back in the day I never got into Mudhoney. I don’t know why but they never really did anything for me.  I had friends and housemates that loved them, so got to hear bits and pieces from their earlier albums but the songs just never grabbed me.  I’d seen the band a few times down the years at Reading but again nothing.  I mean they were ok but didn’t make me want to rush out and buy any of their albums.  The last opportunity I had to see them was at the Ten Years of ATP festival at Minehead back in 2009.  Although I had wanted to see them (having never seen them inside at a smallish venue I was keen to give them another try) they played on the tenth and final day of my 2009 ATP experience (that I will get around to finishing blogging about one of these days), the ten days had taken their toll and I was so under the weather that I had to go back to my chalet for a lie down and managed to miss their Centre Stage set.  Reports of the weekend had them as being one of the highlights; maybe I’d missed my chance to see them at their best.

But tonight at The Zoo I finally “get” them.  I don’t know what they did or whether they did anything different from previous times I’ve seen them.  Maybe it’s just that they have my undivided attention tonight, something they were going to struggle to do when playing the main stage at Reading.  The atmosphere definitely helps; it’s the craziest crowd I’ve seen at The Zoo in a long while, with an energetic mosh pit and crowd surfers.  Although others have disagreed with me, it gets even better when Mark Arm loses the shackles of his guitar and bounds around the stage with his microphone, with the energy in the room reaching an even higher level.  Having been really looking forward to finally getting to see Future Of The Left back here tomorrow night, I start to feel sorry for them that I’m going to see them with tonight still really fresh in my mind.

It’s such an epic set and I’m really enjoying myself until…

Until.

About three songs from the end I’m back near the front, squeezed in at the side of the stage under the speaker, watching the show, enjoying myself.  A few songs earlier, someone (not mentioning any names…) had put their empty beer bottle on top of the speaker stack above my head, when suddenly, obviously due to the vibration from the speaker, it falls and whizzes inches past my face.  “That was lucky”, I think to myself.   Although the bottle hits the floor it doesn’t break but I’m guessing it still might have hurt if it had hit me on the way down.  Then I look down at my camera, which I’ve had slung over my shoulder, and notice that while the bottle managed to miss me, it landed right in the middle of the LCD screen and it was probably that impact that stopped it from smashing when it finally hit the floor.

My LCD screen currently looks like this:

Part of me wishes that it had have hit me, rather than just about the most fragile and most easily breakable part of the camera.

What’s annoying is that with having had it for more than three years, and with its replacement model having been recently released, it was, almost Lethal Weapon-style, “days away from retirement” (or at least semi-retirement as a back-up camera) as it was “getting too old for this shit“.  At some point in the New Year, maybe a few months in, when the price might have dropped a bit from the initial release price, I was going to get a new camera.   Thanks to this, it looks like I’ll be getting it sooner rather than later.

And the evening was going so well.

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