A friend of mine turned me on to Weekend a few years ago, and I had been itching to see them live ever since. Originally this was going to be one of those nights where I went to the show sans camera, but after photographing Weezer at the Americas Cup Pavilion the night before, I couldn’t take a chance of getting hit by a bus or something, and going out knowing that that was the last show I ever photographed.
This was also one of those rare shows where I actually enjoyed every band. Chasms had a warm yet noisy Cocteau Twins thing going on, while Wax Idols sounded like they could have played the Batcave in 1983, with their post punk, almost L.A. Deathrock sound. And I didn’t realize until I was watching them that Amy and Kevin of Veil Veil Vanish (who are also great live, and who I also did a very awkward photo shoot with years ago) were in the band.
As for the photos, they are typical of what I get at The Independent. It’s a great venue, but the shooting conditions are always a bit rough. All photos were taken with a Canon EF 50mm f/1.2 prime lens, and 5D MkIII body. The ISO was cranked to the max…
Peter Murphy live at The Fillmore. Unfortunately The Fillmore’s policy on having barricade in front of the stage seems to have changed, and now they only put one up at the request of the artist performing. It’s great for the fans, but it does make it a bit tough as a photographer, especially when I’m committed to getting decent photos. I “get it” though, and now I just arrive at the venue early enough to secure a spot in front of the stage, get my photos, and give my spot to someone who has actually paid for a ticket.
I was told a girl standing next to me standing next to me (who, from what I gathered, has followed the tour through a few different countries) that Peter was not a fan of photographers, and that I should be careful. While he was definitely aware that I was taking photos, he didn’t seem to mind though, and had such a commanding stage presence that it was rather easy to get some good photographs. I didn’t want to wear out my welcome though, so I left the front of the stage after a few songs and watched he and his band put on a great set of Bauhaus classics o a sold out house.
The lighting for the show wasn’t spectacular by any means, so all photos were taken with a Canon EF 28mm f/1.8 prime lens, with the ISO cranked up fairly high.
Although I’ve been fortunate enough to have photos of Orchid published in just about every Metal magazine on the planet, I’ve always felt that I’ve never truly captured the band live. Maybe it’s because I get into a total “fanboy” mode every time I see them, or maybe it’s because an Orchid show in San Francisco is so rare that when there is one, I just want to put the camera away, have a few beers, and take in one of my favorite bands. At any rate, I decided that this time I really needed to get into photographer mode, and see if I could finally get some decent live shots. And although the conditions at Slim’s are never too photographer friendly, I think I somewhat succeeded. Much thanks to both Orchid and the staff at Slim’s for giving me the access to photograph everything from sound check until well after the show with my camera.
Check out ümlaut for more about the night!