I saw Soul Asylum on Saturday night. Mainly because it was free, partly because I used to like the band quite a bit back in high skrool and college. The event was general admission--a ticket policy I usually avoid at all costs--but this was Rochester and people generally behave like adults in this area even at concerts.
As I stood in the crowd I felt foolish. What am I doing here? Looking around it was much more of a MPLS crowd than I anticipated. People were fighting their way to the front of the stage the old First Avenue Way--sharp elbows, grim determination and zero concern (bordering on the pathological) for your fellow concert goers. Some people who looked like they should know better fired up some weed. I rolled my eyes and waited for the music to begin.
There's Dan Murphy. He looks like he did in 1991. He's still wearing thrift store clothing and the ubiquitous Chuck Taylors. Does he dress this way every day? I think he does. That isn't a stage outfit. The man is in his forties and he's still making some kind of statement with his duds. Sigh. He doesn't seem to be very happy to be playing tonight. There's Pirner. Talented guy, no doubt and he's thankfully lost the dreads from years back, but I wonder if it feels odd at all to be still singing songs of angst and depression and frustration--teenage themes--when you're over 40.
I guess if you subscribe so heavily to an alternative culture as a yout, it's hard to find something to take it's place when you actually become an adult. So how long can somebody keep trudging out these adversarial culture songs and still mean it? Maybe it's time to make peace with the jocks and get on with things. Remains to be seen I guess, but judging from these two guys it looks like they are going to keep it going for a while.