Nearly two years since I saw his awesome show at North Star Bar (R.I.P.) I was fortunate enough to catch the one and only Marty Friedman, Guitar God live for a second time. This was the opening night of his Wall of Sound Tour and this time the chosen venue was The Foundry at the Fillmore, a room I quickly fell in love with. Great sight lines, reasonably priced cold beer, and a sound system that isn’t overwhelming make this a place I can’t wait to hit up again.
Joining Marty onstage were the usual suspects, guitar hotshot Jordan Ziff, and the super-dynamic and high energy Kiyoshi on the 5-string bass. She’s incredible as a player, and a joy to watch live. Since CHARGEEEEEE was unavailable for the first few dates, drummer extraordinaire Anup Sastry sat behind the kit and did an excellent job (he also pounds the skins on Marty’s last alum, Inferno).
Like last time the opener was “Hyper Doom”, Marty’s fretboard threatening to catch fire, then “Amagi Goe”. “Street Demon” was the first of several cuts from his Loudspeaker album before Marty stopped to address the boisterous crowd. You could see on his face that we were even more rowdy than he was expecting and he made it known how glad he was they picked Philly to kick off the tour. “Elixir” and “Stigmata Addiction” threw a nice six-string punch combo before ‘Devil Take Tomorrow” slowed things down a bit to give everyone a breather.
Now it was time for Kiyoshi’s bass solo, something I was patiently waiting for since the show started. Her playing is sensational and she slaps, pops, and pulls those strings while making it look easy. Hell, she even launched into and sang the hook for Britney Spears’ “Baby One More Time” which the crowd ate up with glee. She’s so much fun to watch and she has a great singing voice, too. I’d love it if she put out a solo album sometime.
A medley of “Ashes to Ashes”, ”Forbidden City”, and “Tornado of Souls” was next followed by “Ripped” which led into Jordan Ziff’s guitar solo. I’ve said it before, this kid can fucking PLAY! He even incorporated QUEEN’S “We Are the Champions” into his before Marty talked to us some more. Anup played his ass off on “Inferno” and Marty’s guitar on a pair of new tunes from Wall of Sound in “Whiteworm” and “Self Pollution” sounded amazing on both. Having the new disc early gave me a slight advantage, but they still destroyed live.
“Thunder March” and “Ballad of the Barbie Bandits” closed out the main set before visiting Marty’s 2009 record Tokyo Jukebox with a cover of ikimonogakari’s “Kaeritakunattayo”. Again, I knew nothing about this tune before the last run, but it has since become one of my go-to listens, and is a perfect show closer. When it was all over I left a happy man. Getting to watch Marty, Kiyoshi, Jordan, and Anup, four masters of their craft up on that stage was an absolute privilege, and quite frankly they rocked the shit outta The Foundry! Come back soon!!
LIVE IMAGES: MIKE SIEVILA PHOTOGRAPHY
LIVE WORDS: THE MAESTRO