Tonight Jolayne and I went to see the Violent Femmes play at the Madrid Theatre as part of the 25th anniversary celebration for The Pitch, KC’s local alt-weekly paper. We showed up pretty early, well before the doors opened, hoping to get a good seat in the Madrid’s awesome balcony. Due to getting there just as they were starting a second line for entry we managed to be one of the first people in. However, they had the balcony blocked off for more important people than us apparently and so we headed on to the main floor. That ended up being the best thing that could have happened though, as we were able to grab a spot right in front of the stage. It’s been quite a while since I’ve seen a show from up close, as these days we tend to try to find places to get a good view of shows while being able to sit down. It’s definitely more comfortable that way, but not always as engaging and this was definitely a good show to be front and center for. Watching the show it was hard to believe that the Femmes have been around for almost 25 years themselves because they still put on such an energetic show. We were standing just a few feet from Brian Ritchie and got to witness up close some bass solos that came dangerously close to being face-melting. Victor DeLorenzo is likely the most animated drummer you’ll ever see, opting to stand (and jump and flail) rather than sit as he attacks his minimalist drum kit. And of course there’s Gordon Gano’s instantly recognizable voice. As they were finishing the last song of their encore (“Kiss Off”), Brian threw his pick right at us. Actually there’s some debate about that and Jolayne’s probably right when she says that, technically, he tossed it to her. However, I immediately reached out to grab it as well and with our combined fumbling we almost lost it. Fortunately, and in spite of our efforts, it came to rest on Jolayne’s shoulder. So yeah, with an awesome show and a cool souvenir to boot it was was definitely a memorable evening.