Smashing Pumpkins Review (Spanky Returns)

Spanky is my 14 year-old wonder child. Smart, witty, sarcastic. I love her concert reviews because of her unique perspective, too young to have seen it all. On the diving board from kid to adult, she takes a good long look around before jumping in. Here’s my Spanky’s review of the Smashing Pumpkins’ concert at the Nokia Theatre in Dallas.

Another concert, another review. Living the party life is terribly difficult for one such as myself, but I suffer it to bring to you, my dear readers, another fantastic account of the oddities of concert experience.

To begin from the amusing beginning, I will note that it seems that somehow, my timing is always off, from the small things to the large. This concert was no different.

I decided that I would dress up for the occasion for once, having a grand old time choosing my outfit to insane perfection.

Sadly, the concertgoers were not sporting any similar fashions.

This is to say, I stuck out like… a girl in neon blue and black striped knee socks in a crowd of “normal” people.

I did not have much of a problem with the more reserved, thus infinitely more mature mannerisms of the crowd until later in the evening.

As we’d gotten to the theatre early, we decided to listen to the opening band.

A mistake on our part.

The sole part of my musical experience on the behalf of What Made Milwaukee Famous that I enjoyed was the keyboard. I found it reminiscent of highly energetic techno, which is always good fun, no matter where or what you are.

After they played their last (agonizing) song, the lights flipped on and the excited murmurs began, even though the Smashing Pumpkins would not be out for quite some time. Instead of sitting around to hear people talk amongst one another for thirty minutes, my sister and I decided to watch the experience of another titan of the concert life.

Concert food.

I cannot claim to have tasted every food in this particular hemisphere, however, I can attest to the possibility that concert food is in the top ten worst of all of these foods.

It’s terribly unseasoned, not to mentioned often lukewarm and calling to one’s mind something to the effect of has this been cooked properly?

Needless to say, we passed on that prospect.

Seating ourselves once more, we waited with bated breath for the main act.

The Smashing Pumpkins, I must say, did not disappoint, not in the least.

They played amazingly well, and even the elongated guitar solos did not seem too embellished or unnecessary in the grand scheme of things, although I am still bewildered as to how they could see with the lights behind them that had, on several occasions, burned my eyeballs into a state of temporary blindness.

The most popular songs were the ones played off of the album Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, “Bullet with Butterfly Wings,” and, “Tonight, Tonight,” having enormous popularity with the crowd.

The most popular was “1979.”

With good reason.

“1979” was very likely the best-performed song of the evening.

The decision for it to be played on acoustic guitar with no accompaniment whatsoever what a highly intelligent one, simplifying the song and allowing more of the raw emotion to come out of it. The comfortable familiarity radiated off of the crowd like a contagious heat, slowly soaking in until when Corgan stopped playing the guitar entirely and was left to only singing, there was nothing that could be called silence, the voices of the crowd filling the void left by the instrument.

When the band had picked up at a faster tempo once more, I noticed something highly troubling.

Namely, the lack of crowd-surfing.

I have previously stated that crowd-surfing is one of my favorite parts of attending concerts, and although I could understand the absence of such activity from such a well-behaved crowd, I was a little disheartened by it.

Thankfully, we had a teenager most likely off of his Ritalin for the weekend right in front of us, dancing like there was no Monday to come, for my own private entertainment.

There came a time nearing the end of the concert that called for a questioning of one’s surroundings.

This time was when the beginning riff of Black Sabbath’s “Iron Man” began to resonate from deep within the hearts of the speakers.

It was at such a time that one could be expected to lose all posterity and demand quite plainly, “Say what?”

Indeed, it was “Iron Man,” and a very good cover at that, definitely doing the original the justice it deserves.

Go see for yourself:

But the covers did not end there, oh no.

Next came “I Love Rock and Roll,” (yes, I typed that correctly) which was, to say the least, amusing when sung by Billy Corgan.

Then they played a few more songs and walked off, making it entirely not obvious that they were going to be coming back and playing two encores.

Terribly, horribly not obvious.

After clapping in the dark for ten minutes, the elusive Smashing Pumpkins were lured back onto the stage, playing two more songs before leaving again after another bout of Corgan’s priceless crowd banter.

The lights were flipped on once again as the last reverberations from the speakers died away and with them went the last tangible vestiges of the magical evening.

My family was surprised that they hadn’t played, “Zero.”

I’m surprised I had been too caught up to notice.

I have to say, though, my most favorite part of the concert was definitely…

The keytar.

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14 thoughts on “Smashing Pumpkins Review (Spanky Returns)

  1. Thanks for writing this awesome review, Spanky. I have to note that you were not alone with those wacky socks, Billy Corgan had on the exact same pair, exact same colors.
    Now who rocked in their socks?

  2. YAY! Spanky returns! Excellent! Well, I am down right oblivious when I go to an event. My reviews are, “yep it was fun or what was I thinking.” Spanky, you weave in different persectives so nicely, it really made me feel invited into the experience. How funny about the socks!

  3. Thanks, Jen, that makes two of us. Since I don’t read or play music, I don’t have the faintest idea how to review it. I just know if they energized the crowd, whether it was too loud, if the venue sucks, etc.
    Since Spanky plays music, loves to talk about it, and writes well for her age, I let her rip away at it.

    Oh, Jen, you’ll be proud of me, I edited those videos! Cut out the unnecessary parts, compressed uploaded the good. Yayayayayayay.

  4. Well Spanky, I thought your last review was great, but you’ve improved since then. Totally brilliant. ( I have to be careful what I write here or I won’t have any words left for your next one) Videos gave me a nice little taster of the music, and the descriptions were entertaining. Loved the stripy socks angle. I fell about laughing at the paragraph about the “teenager off his Ritalin for the weekend”. How brilliant was that!!!
    I think she should sent that review to the band’s website. She might get a job.

  5. “teenager off his Ritalin”

    Now see, that’s why Spanky’s perspective (too young to have seen it all) is interesting. You and I know damn well that kid was ON something, not OFF of something.

    Raccoon dogs!? LOL.

  6. Spanky Returns! Way to go, girl. That was an excellent review. I’m still impressed and blown away by your writing skills at such a young age. You rock, Spank. Literally!

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