What to do when there are too many shows in your town and enough time? That's right! Try to take in more than one! Last night in San Francisco there were three events worth the time and effort to attend: gigs from Metallica, Kings Of Leon and local kids done good Stratford 4 were all on the docket. Sadly, only two could be attended and we opted for one of the world's biggest rock bands playing a 1000 seater and the up and coming southern fried family rock act.
After a wonderful dinner with the Elektra heavy hitters brigade of Greg Thompson, Al Tavera and Scott Burton, we excused ourselves to run over to Slim's to check out the dirt rock antics of Kings Of Leon. Wow. I knew they were Southern boys, but this looked like four dudes were pulled out of Dazed and Confused and thrown on stage. Either that or a Molly Hatchet cover band. No matter, though, as their songs are dirty and bluesy and catchy as all hell. "Molly's Chambers" was the best song of the small set we were able to witness. I'm definitely looking out for Youth & Young Manhood when it drops on July 22. As we were walking out to head to The Fillmore I heard someone yell "Freebird," and for once, they might have been serious.
For the second time in three nights, the majestic Metallica reigned supreme in the hallowed halls of The Fillmore. We arrived a bit into the set, obviously, but I knew we hadn't missed too much as drummer Lars Ulrich still had his shirt on. The set list was different than on Monday, with more post-And Justice For All material ("Fuel," "Sad But True") and different earlier material like "Fight Fire With Fire," "Four Horsemen" and the epic "Fade To Black." The passion was still high, but the sound wasn't quite as great as the Monday night gig. The crowd, comprised of primarily fanclub members, was scarier, as well, with more mullets and WWE fans/wannabes. However, any opportunity to see this amazing band in such a small space is to be grasped with both hands. The local boys finished off the night by mixing with the crowd, as they walked from end to end of the stage, shaking hands and accepting gifts. Gracious and ever-thankful, the band walked off blowing kisses and waving to their adoring fans. A proper ending to a quality evening and muchos propias to the Elektra crew for being enablers.