I was (am) a big fan of Alice In Chains, so I was very happy to land an assignment photographing one of their two sold out shows in New York last week. I have to say it was strange to hear those songs without Layne Staley singing them. The man had a distinctive voice. However, it is probably testament to those song's quality and to new singer William DuVall's talent that they stood up without that rasping growl Layne Staley brought to his delivery. The crowd seemed to enjoy as well. The place was packed, there was lots of happy faces and big singalongs on the choruses. As they played 'No Excuses' which is one of my favourite Alice In Chains songs from the excellent 'Jar of Flies', the crowd joined in and reached a crescendo with the lines "You're my friend, I will defend, And if we change, Well I love you anyway".
Amen to that.
Amen to that.
I've been to Madison Square Garden before but never to work. Last Friday I photographed the British band 'Muse' playing there and it was an interesting experience. It was the first time in ages I photographed a concert in a space anywhere near that big and not only was I subject to the 'First three songs, no flash' rule that I so dislike but we were only allowed to photograph from the soundboard, which at a guess was about 100 yards from the stage. Never have I been that far away from a band I'm supposed to photograph. There was a whole bunch of photographers there. After waiting around in the depths of the Garden we were escorted up to the arena floor, lined up along the soundboard and there we all stood, snapping away. Some had some pretty expensive long and fat telephotos and some had some very tiny lenses (no penis jokes please). I rarely need a very long lens and the longest I own is a 200mm (300mm equivalent on the DX sensor) which was stretched to it's limit in order to get some 3/4 and full length shots of the band members. No chance of getting a headshot from that distance with this lens, and I've never owned a teleconverter. The Garden staff were great, all the photographers were well behaved (no paparazzi style jostling) and I quite enjoyed the bizarre press gang experience of being escorted about the bowels of a big stadium. I do find these photography restrictions very strange though, especially as members of the public are happily snapping away with camera phones and point and shoots - some of which are pretty damn good. Anyway. I don't really get Muse's music and after three songs we were all escorted off the arena floor and I left through the back door. I had no ticket or press pass to see the rest of the show so I headed home.
Opening act Silversun Pickups
The crowd and a big video camera
You used to take the plastic cup home as a souvenir, now you photograph it with your phone
Big impressive stadium rock theatrics from Muse
more phone photographing