November 12, 2010
It was big news when I was young, when Richard Patrick left Nine Inch Nails to do his own project, Filter. I was a huge NIN fan (still am) and though that band is really the product of one person’s vision, the original band members were no small part in making that band what it was…and what it became. Filter first hit the public hard with “Hey Man, Nice Shot.” If you were there, you know what an impact that made. If you weren’t, you’re still hearing it on the radio.
The biggest was yet to come with the crossover success of “Take a Picture,” which was everywhere when the single came out. You couldn’t turn on the tube without seeing that on some sort of drama or backing a commercial.
I caught the release show for The Amalgamut at Chicago’s HOB. It was a show that has stuck in my head all these years. I thought that was about 2005-6 or so, but Patrick corrected me on Saturday as I brought it up on the bus on Saturday night. “Actually, that was in 2002. It was right before I got sober.” He pointed to his forearm. A tattoo in long-hand, cursive lettering read, “September 28, 2002.” Time flies.
Richard Patrick has a unique voice. I have never confused it with anyone else’s. He’s also got an intense work ethic. Gone are the times of excess and crazy behavior. Richard knows that success in the music industry is earned. He also knows that his new record, The Trouble with Angels, needs to be built from the ground up. Enter the club tour. Saturday’s show was at the Cubby Bear, a venue that is typically known as the after-the-Cubs-game hang-out. It is a full-fledged venue in its own right though. This night it was full.The set started with newer songs, but quickly reminded everyone there why they were fans in the first place. The show was more honest than I’ve seen in the past. Filter has been that serious rock star band in the past. This time there was more banter and more interaction with the crowd. More working the crowd.
The band also made sure they took the time after the show to meet and greet with anyone that would want to. While the crew set upon the task of breaking down the stage and packing up, the band sat at the merchandise table and signed, posed, and conversed with their fans. They were making connections that I’m sure will be remembered the next time it is time there is a show for sale up here in Chicago.
I hope that’s not too long.