[media stories: 2002: english]
MOTORPSYCHO Paradiso-Amsterdam | Apr 24, 2002
Review of the Amsterdam show / 2002-04-24
Motorpsycho is renowned for their fanatic fans that travel along with the band during their long and extensive tours. This night I went to the gig with a couple of fans that belong to the hardcore of the Motorpsycho fans. They really come from everywhere. Italians, Germans, Americans and of course Norwegians.
The true fans are present hours before the gig to meet each other and talk about Motorpsycho. As I walk around in Paradiso I hear fragments of conversations: 'Why weren't you in Paris?' and 'Your first show of the tour?' The atmosphere was quite enjoyable and pleasant but I did feel a bit out of place.
As the time of the concert approached people actually got a little nervous, even after the gazillionth time they're at a Motorpsycho gig. In the meantime more and more people had entered Paradiso and, although the gig wasn't sold out, it had become pretty crowded.
I'm not a fan at all I must say. I've seen the band twice, years ago. Once acoustic, which was absolutely great, and once electric, which was absolutely boring. Noisy riff based jams that lasted half an hour while they weren't exactly great instrumentalists. Not exactly my cup of tea! But after I was told the band had changed a lot over the years and was more to the point now I thought that I'd give them another chance.
The band started off with a hard rocking song that was a bit surprising as the band has evolved more and more to a more poppy and structured sound. The rest of the set consisted mainly out of the newer and more accessible material. I must say they have become a really good band. But they still tend to overestimate their own capabilities as musicians, which results in instrumental passages that are just too long.
It's the sort of jamming that may be a lot of fun for the band, but for the not-so-die-hard-fan like me it's a bit boring sometimes. Nothing really happens and they do it in almost every song. The songs that have shorter instrumental passages are a lot more interesting. The dynamics are very good and there's suspense in the music. The organ plays an important role in the diversity. Maybe Motorpsycho should experiment with more instruments in their live shows. It enriches the sound.
The new(er) Motorpsycho has a distinctive seventy pop/rock-feeling. The heavy riffs have made place for more groovy rhythm guitar work and the screaming vocals are replaced by melodies. And there are some pretty good ones. Maybe I was wrong to ignore this band for years.
At the end of the regular set they played a great Grand Funk Railwoad cover to underline their influences. Of course they had to come back for an encore. Not only the hardcore fans wanted more, the whole of Paradiso hadn't had enough yet. And I must say I think I'll check them out the next time they're around and I might even sneak in the record store soon to check out their latest records.
Walter de Korver