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Concert Reviews:
Alanis Morissette
- September 1, 1996

- May 26, 1996

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Alanis Morissette
with special guest Garbage
A Concert Review

March 9, 1999

The Rosemont Horizon

Rosemont, IL

A Review and Photos by
The Dude on the Right
The weather forecast the day before called for snow. Not just a couple of inches, but this was supposed to be one of those "stock up on canned goods because you won't be going anywhere for a while" snowstorms. I was a tad concerned that mother nature would interfere with Alanis' return to Chicago, but as I looked out my window the next morning I wondered why I ever listen to the weatherman. Yea, there was snow, but thanks to them I now was stuck with twenty cans of green beans and ravioli. Maybe I'll just save them for the Y2K disaster coming later this year. Oh well. Anyway, the snow wasn't nearly that bad, so it was off to the Rosemont Horizon to see a couple of ladies - Shirley Manson of Garbage, and of course, Alanis Morissette.

Shirley Manson of "Garbage"
Arriving at the Horizon quicker than I figured, I had time to do a little people-watching. The first thing I noticed were the two dudes that kissed right in front of me, and after I got adjusted to nothing being wrong with that, I noticed a few other things about the crowd. This time, unlike a couple of years ago, the crowd seemed a little younger. Gone seemed to be the older dudettes angry at the male race, and in their place younger, more in the high school crowd, bringing their boyfriends. I felt my ability to flaunt my sensitive side would now be wasted, so I might as well just enjoy the shows.

Garbage was opening, and Shirley and the boys sounded great. Sportin' a busted flipper, Shirley did her best to still bounce around the stage, but I was still a little sad. I wasn't sad at their performance, oh no, I was bummed because I was pulling double duties as photographer and reviewer so I would only get to see three songs of Garbage. Their set was kind of short, so it was kinda a quick run through of their radio hits. The three songs I saw came off well, and I liked the more acoustical version of "Misunderstood," but it was time for me to head back to the waiting area and just listen. The crowd sounded like they enjoyed the band, so I've got to go with that, and give Garbage Two "thumbs in a sling" up!

And then came Alanis.

Alanis stalks the stage.
The last time I saw Alanis, over two years ago, I was impressed because of the showwomanship she possessed, and how she used it to work the crowd. This time, although I think I was in a huge minority, I wasn't as impressed, and this is why - maybe it was my vantage point (I skipped my assigned seats and headed for the rafters to get a clear shot of the stage), maybe it was my not knowing all of the songs this time around, or maybe it was because I kept getting distracted by the six girls a few rows in front of me, but for most of the show, it just seemed to me that Alanis wasn't trying to connect with the crowd, but maybe more just singing and dancing in her own little world. Not that there's anything wrong with that, and most of the rest of the crowd didn't seem to care, but it bugged me.

Music-wise, Alanis' hour and forty five minutes on stage were just about what I expected. A lot of the show was based on the "Jagged Little Pill" days, but the old songs didn't sound old because it sounded like she and the band changed them just a little to keep them fresh. But, Alanis is out in support of her latest CD, "Supposed Former Infatuation Junkie," which I haven't heard yet, other than the songs on the radio, so I will assume that most of the songs I didn't know were from that. "Dude, you suck. You bad-mouth her in that last paragraph, then tell us you don't even have her latest CD. What kind of reviewer are you? Why don't you go back to making airplanes?" I can hear a couple of you Alanis fans ready to blast an e-mail at me saying something like that, but hold your horses for a minute. Read on.

Alanis Morissette
One thing I like about seeing bands, especially if I haven't heard a lot of their new material, is to find out that I like their new material. I like hearing the radio hits, but I like it even more when a band or performer can have me leaving a show adding their latest CD to my "buy" list. On the music side, Alanis did that, as I found I liked a lot of the songs I haven't heard better than those on the radio. So, in that aspect, I was happy with the show.

I became kinda annoyed, though, of Alanis' stage stalking, going from one corner, diagonally to the middle of the stage, then diagonally to the other corner, and repeating this maneuver with the occasional karma dance thrown in. But I think I may have been the only one who was annoyed with this. There were, however, a couple of times I saw that spark again, how Alanis could make you listen to a song as well as enjoy it, and for that I was happy to be there.

Well, as much as some things bugged me, it wasn't that important that Alanis please me, she needed to please her fans and she seemed to do just that. From those in the front row to the six girls in front of me in the rafters, everyone seemed to have a great time. Me, maybe I should go get her new CD. It's Two "Karma Dancing" Thumbs Up for Alanis.

That's it for this one, I'm The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!


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