Taking stock: two years of live music in Amsterdam

Amsterdam’s live music scene was one of the main attractions for us when we moved there from Geneva in June 2009. In the last two years I’ve been to around fifty gigs, mostly at the Paradiso and Melkweg, two of Europe’s great music venues. With our return now to Geneva I thought it’d be fun…Continue readingTaking stock: two years of live music in Amsterdam

Pete and the Pirates – Paradiso – 19.07.2011

The Kleine Zaal at the Paradiso was packed to capacity for last night’s gig by these not-at-all scruffy young chaps from Reading. The lead singer is remarkably well-spoken: I could imagine him leading a delegation from the UK Foreign Office to the United Nations. He sings well too, a little bit Bowie, a little bit…Continue readingPete and the Pirates – Paradiso – 19.07.2011

Mercury Rev – Paradiso – 24.05.2011 (Guest Post!!!)

My job required me to fly to be in Turkey this week meaning that I missed out on going to see Mercury Rev at the Paradiso. I passed the tickets on to my friends Christina and Mirko who kindly wrote the report below. (My first guest post – could this be the start of my…Continue readingMercury Rev – Paradiso – 24.05.2011 (Guest Post!!!)

The Tallest Man on Earth – Paradiso – 18.05.2011

It wasn’t so much the tallest man on earth as the highest man on earth this evening at the Paradiso. It seems Christian Matson made the most of his day in Amsterdam before performing to a packed Grote Zaal. Fortunately it didn’t seem to affect the quality of the musical performance adversely; he was certainly…Continue readingThe Tallest Man on Earth – Paradiso – 18.05.2011

Alela Diane – Paradiso – 04.05.2011

Alela Diane has a special voice – plaintive and strong, but sweet and gentle too. I quite like her album To Be Still, the only one with which I was familiar before last night’s gig. I was expecting lots of banjo and steel guitar, over acoustic fingerpicking and haunting melodies. What I got was Wild…Continue readingAlela Diane – Paradiso – 04.05.2011

Ron Sexsmith – People’s Place – 29.04.2011

People’s Place is a private bar and event venue on the ground floor of the Tommy Hilfiger HQ building near Leidseplein. The folks at the Paradiso have started using it as an additional room for touring acts, but it’s not really a satisfactory space. A very wide column takes out the view for a significant…Continue readingRon Sexsmith – People’s Place – 29.04.2011

Bright Eyes – Paradiso – 21.02.2011

Following last week’s top notch Iron and Wine gig in the same venue, this was another case of an artist sometimes noted for his more gentle, acoustic-based songs whipping up a full-band musical storm. I’ve seen Conor Oberst live once before, but it was an altogether more countrified experience when he was touring his eponymous…Continue readingBright Eyes – Paradiso – 21.02.2011

Iron and Wine – Paradiso – 15.02.2011

In my mind I suppose I was expecting a bearded folkster singing gentle songs with his acoustic guitar; what we got was eight brilliant musicians performing and reworking familiar songs in a style that veered between swampy folk, classic rock, African pop and jazzy jamming. Sam Beam led his band like a man who had…Continue readingIron and Wine – Paradiso – 15.02.2011

The Airborne Toxic Event – Paradiso – 08.02.2011

This gig was recommended by my American buddy Brad, who runs the Live Music Meetup in Amsterdam. He has admitted to having “concert stalked” this band back in the States and was pretty excited to find out that they’re playing every Monday night in February in the small room at the Paradiso. Interesting tactic. It…Continue readingThe Airborne Toxic Event – Paradiso – 08.02.2011

Josh Ritter – Paradiso – 14.09.2010

Josh Ritter is such a generous and warm performer. This was my third time seeing him live and, yet again, it was an uplifting experience. It’s rare to see a musician that so clearly loves doing what he does and lets it show unashamedly. What’s more, he’s a brilliant lyricist who has crafted some really…Continue readingJosh Ritter – Paradiso – 14.09.2010