Not even half a year has gone by since I’ve last seen The Struts and they are back again with even more energy than before. When I first saw them, it was a small show and a very intimate experience. Now, I had the opportunity to see them on a larger stage surrounded by hundreds of people in an open air venue. I must say it was incredible but I’m already getting ahead of myself. This show was at the Tempe Marketplace. I used to hang out here a lot, spending most of my time at Dave & Busters. In fact, this is where I spent my 21st birthday so it has some good, if not very fuzzy, memories. In the years since I had been here last, it looks like they’ve updated it a bit and the stage was far more impressive than I remember.
The opening act was Bleeker, a band from Orillia, Ontario, Canada. They reminded the audience of that enough I figured it’s worth mentioning here. Overall, they weren’t bad nor were they amazing. No matter what I just couldn’t quite get into them. A lot of their songs were love song after breakup song after tribute to an ex-girlfriend. Honestly, I couldn’t relate to the lyrics. Their song, “Highway,” actually caught my interest on stage but when going back to listen to it and see the music video, I found it uninspiring. Just like everything else, it felt like it was pining for some girl. Even though they didn’t seem to really interest me, they had an amazing presence on stage. It looked like they were having some real fun out there and I greatly enjoyed watching them.
It was a bit of a wait but eventually The Struts hit the stage. They were just as amazing as I remembered when they came through in November. The Missus and I rocked out to all their songs as we had been listening to them all the past week or two leading up to the show. Yet, something that really made the night special is they moment when it was obvious to me that they remembered me. Occasional glances and smiles that one is usually never quite sure if they were directed at them or not. It’s those little things that make the experience so awesome. By the end of the show, the band started tossing about spare picks and sticks as many bands do at the end of a show and I’d be lying if I said that every time it happens, I kinda hope I get noticed for the simple fact that it’s nice to have that something you take home as evidence that you were there and I suck at catching. Then there are those moments that a little moment of magic does happen as Jed shoved the set list to my chest and tells me that it was good to see me again. Those moments trump any fantasy of catching any tossed memorabilia. Before leaving, we took a moment to ask if the band was coming out later in hopes of getting it signed. Even though they weren’t and were leaving soon for the next gig, the set list got run back to be signed really quick. I’m still not big on getting signatures but there is something nice about a signed set list. It gives it just a little more meaning and marks a wonderful end to an already amazing night.