by Cory Finley – Jul. 31, 2011 11:07 AM
The Arizona Republic
Roger Clyne hasn’t had a national radio hit since the mid-’90s. But the crowd at the sold-out Foundry on Saturday night, July 30, couldn’t have cared less.
To that crowd, the first to fill the 1,500-capacity venue in downtown Phoenix since its July 8 opening, the ageless Clyne was a bona fide rock god.
Looking vaguely messianic in a loose white shirt and a shoulder-length mane, Clyne came onstage to thunderous applause and announced that his band, the Peacemakers, would play 13 acoustic songs, followed by a full-length electric set.
“So pace yourselves, good people,” he said, holding up a beer. The crowd, already pretty far along, hooted their approval.
The first half of the show, though acoustic, was anything but restrained. Clyne and his three bandmates injected a stomping intensity into “Heaven on a Paper Plate,” from this year’s “Unida Cantina,” without losing the song’s laid-back, Jimmy-Buffett-worthy charm. And “Maybe We Should Fall in Love,” a tight rocker from 2007’s “No More Beautiful World,” sounded positively arena-ready.
The oppressive heat in the venue didn’t dampen spirits; napkins and sombreros were pressed into service as fans.
“It’s not hot in here,” Clyne kept repeating matter-of-factly, as if willing the heat away. His audience, cold beers in hand, were happy to play along.
The Peacemakers returned to the stage after a short interval with electric guitars strapped on and Christmas lights wrapped around the amps and drum kits. They launched into a thumping version of “All Over the Radio,” the lead track from “Unida Cantina,” and never slowed down.
Clyne never strayed far, in his music or his banter, from a breezy good-time vibe, which is either a limitation or a blessing, depending on who’s talking. And the people at the Foundry definitely came down on the blessing side of that equation.
Clyne called the crowd his “familia,” raising toasts to life and togetherness.
He briefly alluded to the debt-ceiling negotiations in Congress before anti-materialist anthem “Dinero,” but ended by asking the crowd to just “let the money go away – let’s let the love amplify.”
It helped that his audience seemed to know every single word of his extensive catalogue, mouthing along and shouting out whenever prompted. On “Mexico,” a song by Clyne’s former band, the Refreshments, Clyne outsourced entire verses to the enthusiastic crowd.
Just before midnight, after the Peacemakers returned to the stage for an encore, Clyne asked how many members of the audience had come for the first time. A handful of hands shot up. He encouraged them to stay on for future performances.
“We’re far more than just a band and an audience,” he said. “We’re a community.”
The crowd agreed, loudly.
Then he launched into that aforementioned national radio hit, the Refreshments’ wry “Banditos. ”
Hands shot up in the air and dancing broke out all across the beer-splattered floor.
It felt, in the best way possible, as if not a day had passed since 1996.
Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/thingstodo/music/articles/2011/07/31/20110731roger-clyne-peacemakers-review-foundry.html#ixzz1TjLyaYb0