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hutchinson field, chicago


Release Date: 08.01.01
Record label: Radiohead with special guests: the beta band & kid koala
Genre(s): Country Western

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the beta band & kid koala city: chicago venue: hutchinson field date: 08.01.01 get it here!

The Proof is in the Pudding
by: bill aicher

"Amnesiac? Kid A? What shite! Where's the guitars?"

"Why can't Radiohead make another album like The Bends?"

"Radiohead isn't a rock band anymore."

Fuck all, I say. While it may be true that Radiohead's guitar sound from years past has gone the way of the dodo, their recent performance at Chicago's Hutchinson Field should be more than enough to convince the naysayers that this group of British cronies are still the greatest rock band in the world.

Starting out the show just before 6:30 was the Scottish group, The Beta Band, who entered the stage to the theme from tv's Frasier. Their short set consisted of a fairly varied selection of tracks from their various albums, focusing mainly on highlights from their new album, Hot Shots II. Their signature style of trip-hopped electro-rock was enough to catch the attention of the crowd, but it wasn't until their classic "Dry the Rain" from The Three EPs that they came into their own. And, despite a failed attempt to incite a "fuck the man" mentality against MTV (who was at the same time celebrating it's 20th Birthday), Stephen Mason and co. delivered a strong opening for the night.

Following the Beta Band was famed DJ, Kid Koala. Showcasing his turntable mastery on a set of three tables, he kept the audience entertained as they waited for Radiohead, and managed to mix in samples from two Radiohead tracks along the way - "Pull/Pulk Revolving Doors" and "Fitter, Happier."

But it was at 7:50 p.m., to the sound of Jonny's radio and a kick into bass of "The National Anthem", that the show really began. Pulling from an extremely varied setlist, they showcased tracks from all their albums but placed prominence on the newer material. A bassed-out version of "Packt Like Sardines in a Crushd Tin Box" gave the song a new life for the arena, and the frenzied spasm of "Idioteque" made way for Thom to enjoy a freaked-out dance.

Tracks like "How to Disappear Completely," "You and Whose Army" (with a chipper Thom smiling his close-up mug at the camera), and a rare live performance of the unreleased beautiful "True Love Waits" showed the other side of the spectrum - the softer side of Radiohead.

In addition to "True Love Waits," fans were also treated with rare performances of "Permanent Daylight" from the My Iron Lung EP and "Lurgee," from the group's first album, Pablo Honey - whose unpopularity, even among casual fans, Thom Yorke joked about by stuttering the title as "Pa..pa..pa..." without quite being able to speak the name.

After three encores, the show finally ended with "Street Spirit (Fade Out)," and an ecstatic audience looking on in at the band, poised on stage, made their final exit against the night lights of Chicago's skyline.

for mp3s and photos from the show, check out gotcannedgoods.com!