Get SF Weekly Newsletters

Monday, September 24, 2012

Live Review, 9/21/12: Bob Mould Charges Through Copper Blue at the Fillmore

Posted By on Mon, Sep 24, 2012 at 3:00 AM

Bob Mould at the Fillmore on Friday. All photos courtesy Yasmin Vahdatpour.
  • Bob Mould at the Fillmore on Friday. All photos courtesy Yasmin Vahdatpour.

Bob Mould

Friday, Sept. 21, 2012

The Fillmore

Better than: A Folsom Street Fair hangover.

In a perfect world, all our angry, drug-abusing heroes of punk rock history would age into Bob Mould. Can you imagine? If Sid Vicious had, instead of dying at 22, grown into someone you kinda wished were your uncle, because he seemed like he'd be great at barbecues? Instead, what we have is in that category is just Mould, doing his thing. But as he proved on Friday night at the Fillmore, just Mould doing his thing is nothing to shake a stick at.

"How you doing, San Francisco? Did you guys see the space shuttle today? It's kind of the little big things that count, right?" the bespectacled 51-year-old rocker asked an adoring, packed house, seemingly taking a breath for the first time all night.

That was a sweat-soaked 45 minutes into the show, after he, drummer Jon Wurster, and bassist Jason Narducy had charged through the entirety of Sugar's Copper Blue with such physical prowess and obvious joy that it was almost difficult to recall that Mould had been playing these songs -- these bright, triumphant tracks from his poppiest album -- for the past 20 years.

  • Yasmin Vahdatpour

Of course, even if Mould had phoned them in, certain moments would have elicited yelps of nostalgic bliss from this mostly forty- and fifty-something crowd, which included both A) the most polite and welcoming and iPhone-less group of people we've ever interacted with directly in front of the stage at a major venue, and B) a notable abundance of older balding men with gray beards, wearing plaid shirts much like Mould's, creating a sort of Where's Waldo-effect, if Waldo ever spent time in San Francisco's middle-aged bear scene.

Regardless: there was no phoning into be had. Mould kicked and wailed through singles like "Changes" and "If I Can't Change Your Mind" with contagious energy; and he poured himself into "Hoover Dam," with its soaring chorus, like it was the first time he'd ever sung it. We're probably not old enough to say "They don't make alt-rock like this anymore," which is to say, simultaneously hook-y and hard-driving and neither overproduced nor whiny -- but whatever, we're saying it. Mould's guitar work was powerful as ever, which was important, because Wurster's Muppetlike tendencies on the drums are a (mostly excellent) force to be reckoned with; at points you couldn't quite tell which musician was trying to keep up with the other.

  • Pin It

Tags: , , ,

About The Author

Emma Silvers


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed

Like us on Facebook


  • clipping at Brava Theater Sept. 11
    Sub Pop recording artists 'clipping.' brought their brand of noise-driven experimental hip hop to the closing night of 2016's San Francisco Electronic Music Fest this past Sunday. The packed Brava Theater hosted an initially seated crowd that ended the night jumping and dancing against the front of the stage. The trio performed a set focused on their recently released Sci-Fi Horror concept album, 'Splendor & Misery', then delved into their dancier and more aggressive back catalogue, and recent single 'Wriggle'. Opening performances included local experimental electronic duo 'Tujurikkuja' and computer music artist 'Madalyn Merkey.'"