Garbage at the Ogden Theatre, 10/6/12 (photos and review)By Candace Horgan | October 8th, 2012 | 1 Comment »
“I’m not looking for a pure breed; I’m looking for a big, f*cked-up mess like us!” yelled Garbage frontwoman Shirley Manson halfway through the band’s triumphant set on Saturday at the Ogden Theatre, commenting on the motley crew that composes a Garbage audience.
Garbage was scheduled to play the Ogden in late April, but had to cancel the Denver, Aspen and Salt Lake City dates due to a family emergency. According to Manson, “We’re much tighter now, so it all worked out.” Indeed, the band, with some members older than 60, turned in a blistering, fiery show that made the group seem as vital as ever.
Manson is a riveting performer, stalking the stage with restrained ferocity, almost like a caged cat, circling around and around between guitarists Duke Erikson and Steve Marker and occasionally leaning out from the stage over the crowd, egging the audience members on and even getting them to sing a verse or two on cue. Erikson, meanwhile, played a revolving cast of guitars while occasionally adding keyboard fills, while Marker limited himself to one or two guitars and key fills.
Some of the more familiar tunes were reinvented live. “Queer” was slightly slowed down and heavier, with a more ominous feel, while the ever-popular “Stupid Girl” got a trippy backbeat fill underneath it and was slightly sped-up for a very club-oriented sound.
“Cherry Lips,” which has a more pop feel to it, sounded crunchier and heavier than its studio version. Despite the multiple guitar changes, Erikson’s tone had that very dark, lo-fi crunch tone that seems to define much of ’90s alt-rock. Even some of the new songs, such as the sludgy-sounding “Control,” fit right into the band’s best work.
Erickson’s guitar leads are perfect ear candy on most songs, such as they way they danced in out around Marker’s rhythm fills to great effect on “Blood for Poppies” underneath Manson’s frenetic delivery.
The band closed its set with “I’m Only Happy When it Rains,” which started slow and dreamy, with Manson singing over a synth fill played by Erickson, before the band kicked into high gear on the first chorus to the delight of the audience, which sang along on the choruses.
Automatic System Habit, I Think I’m Paranoid, Shut Your Mouth, Why Do You Love Me, Queer, Stupid Girl, Hammering in My Head, Control, #1 Crush, Big Bright World, Cherry Lips, Blood for Poppies, Special, Milk, Battle in Me, Push It, I’m Only Happy When it Rains, E: Supervixen, The Trick is to Keep Breathing, Vow,
Nathan Iverson is a Denver photographer and regular contributor to Reverb.