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05/03/2002 The Tea Party, The Full Nine, The Turnstones (Velour) (Buffalo, NY @ Shea’s Performing Arts Center)

By Eric | May 3, 2002 11:59 pm

Mary and I arrived about 6:30, waited in the lobby, and were found by Joe and company. They were told the Tea PArty guys would be coming back to the venue at about 8:00. So we decided to wait outside for awhile, even though the doors opened at 7. Being a seated show, we weren’t worried about fighting for a spot, and since Velour was opening, we didn’t really care. At about 10 to 8, Jeff Burrows walked out, and we got about 2 autographs, and that was it. We were cold, so we went in. Mary and I jumped on tickets really early, so we had 3rd row, in the middle section. Excellent seats! We saw Sara and Danielle about 10 rows behind us, so we sat with them for the first set. Velour comes out, and they changed their name!!! Now dubbed the The Turnstones, they played just as bad as they always have. New name, same crappy band. The thinking is that they changed their name because too many people know how bad they are, so to trick people into showing up, they’re going incognito. Bah. And just when it couldn’t get any worse, The Full Nine comes out. “Hollywood Records Recording Artists”. Caroline’s Spine gets dropped and they signed these guys?? In the same vein as Velour, their singer was worse, the songs were worse, and not a soul in the place was moving. A half-hour later, they’re done and we wait anxiously for the Tea. And we were rewarded handsomely. Opening with Interzone (Samsara insert), Shea’s was captivated from beginning to end. Next was Fire In The Head, Lullaby, Psychopomp with its usual amazing guitar solo, Apathy, and then an instrumental break with The Badger. Keeping with the acoustic, they did Walking Wounded that way, which was a welcome change. Jeff came out with the “Oud” (and said as much!) for Zahira/Favorite Son/Halcyon Days, Angels, Cathartik, Mantra, Save Me (Kashmir insert), and closed the main set with Temptation (The River insert). Jeff came out alone for the beginning of the encore, starting Messenger before the rest of the band joined him. Jeff made a little speech about the white ribbon campaign, and proceeded to play Soulbreaking, then Heaven Coming Down, and finished the night off with Sister Awake (with Paint It Black and Heroes inserts). The crowd was extremely loud, and I believe the place was sold out. They seemed to appreciate the crowd, unfortunately the same couldn’t be said of the 4 old drunk guys in front of us, who ended up getting a drumstick. No knowledge of the songs at all. Whatever. We ran up to the front and the drum tech was handing out sticks, so Mary got one of those. A great show, and left us salivating for more the next night!

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