Music Reviews — 01 October 2011
Save The Clock Tower Benefit Concert featuring Finger Eleven

Concert Review: Finger Eleven

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Finger Eleven
Schaefer Center, Stevens Institute of Technology, Hoboken, New Jersey
September 29, 2011

Leave it to the students of the Stevens Institute of Technology to create a Back to the Future themed series of events for their annual on campus “Techfest.”  The 2011 edition jump-started with a reenactment of the 1950’s influenced “Enchantment Under the Sea” dance, and concluded with a Dr. Emmitt Brown themed science exhibition featuring none other than the immortal Bill Nye, the science guy. Yes, Bill Nye is still drawing interest from science aficionados and the like.

Taking to the central theme of the back to school festival, the Student Government Association decided on Canada’s Finger Eleven to headline the appropriately titled, “Save The Clock Tower Benefit Concert.” While not being directly linked to Stevens or time travel, Finger Eleven treated the predominantly student based crowd to a set list containing songs spanning all five of Finger Eleven’s full length releases.

Handpicked from a wish list that included Jimmy Eat World, Brand New, and Everclear, hard rock veterans Finger Eleven played an 80 minute, 17 song performance without a hitch, featuring a variety of aggressive art rock inspired tracks promoting the quintet’s current release, “Life Turns Electric.” The critically acclaimed, self-produced effort was on display early and often, highlighted by the upbeat and on point “Any Moment Now,” the hard hitting  “Pieces Fit,” and lead single, “Living In a Dream.” Long time fan favorites “First Time, “Quicksand,” and “Above” from the band’s 1998 debut LP, “Tip,” continue to age gracefully in a live setting. 

While “Living In a Dream” didn’t match the commercial success of 2007’s smash hit and set closer, “Paralyzer,” Finger Eleven continues to impress its dedicated fan base in the studio and on the road. While they rarely headline in the states, they have been a featured act in Canada for well over a decade with the likes of Our Lady Peace, Theory of a Deadman, Hedley and Matthew Good.

It’s a rare treat for a band to stay true to its roots. All five original band members, (frontman Scott Anderson, Scott’s older brother and bassist Sean, drummer Rich Beddoe and enigmatic rhythm guitarist Rick Jackett and the uber-talented lead axe man, James Black) are still in tact. Wind-Up records is the only recording entity to ever have Finger Eleven as part of their lineup.  The band even utilized Wind Up’s Quad Studios in New York City to self-produce their latest release. It’s safe to say that New York’s palpable buzz and electricity is what promoted Finger Eleven to experiment with a new attitude and vision. However, at its core, Finger Eleven it’s a well oiled machine and one of modern rocks most underrated mainstays. Kudos to the undergrads at Stevens Institute for bringing in Finger Eleven to kick off the Fall semester. If only they could reinvent the flux capacitor.

- Buzz Francis

Setlist: (courtesy of  Finger Eleven)

  1. Any Moment Now
  2. Pieces Fit
  3. Above
  4. Falling On
  5. Complicated Questions
  6. Living In A Dream
  7. Good Intentions
  8. Stone Soul
  9. I’ll Keep Your Memory Vague
  10. One Thing
  11. Obvious Heart (not performed)
  12. Drag You Down
  13. First Time
  14. Quicksand
  15. Talking To The Walls
  16. Whatever Doesn’t Kill Me
  17. Good Times

Encore:

  1. Paralyzer

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