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Vaden on Corgan

Local musician Sadler Vaden weighs in on the Smashing Pumpkins

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Leslie's guitarist/vocalist Sadler Vaden caught the big Smashing Pumpkins show on July 17. Here's his special report:

The Smashing Pumpkins
Music Farm
July 17

The Music Farm was packed out with old-school and new-school fans alike to see alternative rock kings The Smashing Pumpkins, which in this case felt more like the Smashing Pumpkin. Billy Corgan, 43, and his band of lookalikes hit the stage around 10:45 p.m. to a very enthusiastic sold-out crowd. Without a word, they kicked right into "Astral Planes" off of their new record, Teagarden by Kaleidoscope. Without missing a beat, they went right into "Ava Adore." The crowd then started settling in, especially with the huge lighting rig the Pumpkins brought into the Farm, which at times was a little much.

Other hits of the night included "Today," "Bullet with Butterfly Wings," "Disarm," "Cherub Rock," and "Tarantula."

The audience focused on Corgan all night, occasionally putting up with his dry humor and rock star attitude. At one point in the show, while introducing the band, Corgan started playing "Shine" by '90s alt-rock band Collective Soul, which resulted in a crowd singalong with different lyrics, "Heaven let your love light shine." Corgan spat and stated how much he hated that song and how that band didn't have the balls to say that they had ripped him off. It went on way too long. Also, he kind of dated himself. An alternative rock guy from the '90s getting on his high-horse about another alt-rock '90s band? Lame. Less talky, more rocky.

As the show came to a close, I wondered when the two giant windmills standing on either side of the stage were going start spinning. Well, they eventually did ... to my disappointment. During "Cherub Rock," the lighting guy turned them on. They just kind of spun around. I was hoping they would have shot fire or something. Instead, it looked like something Phish or Widespread Panic would have used during one of their freakishly long jams.

Overall, thumbs up to the show. It would have been helpful is someone had told Corgan to just shut up and rock. —Sadler Vaden

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