Lottapianos Tour: The set list and comments for Tori's August 10th concert in Chicago, IL
Updated Mon, Aug 11, 2003 - 5:22am ET
You can now see the set list and reviews for the Chicago, IL concert. The set included Seaside (solo), Vincent Starry Starry Night (solo), Bells For Her, Virginia and Upside Down (with band). If you were at this show I would love to see your review on the Dent. I am on the road seeing Tori now, so please post your reviews in the Concert Reviews Forum if you can. You can still email me with reviews as well, but it may take me a little longer to post them.
Tori performed in Chicago, IL on Sunday, August 10, 2003 at the Auditorium Theatre. Tori's special guest was Ben Folds and the show started at 7:00PM.
a sorta fairytale
Bells For Her
Take To The Sky
Past The Mission
Vincent (Starry Starry Night)
I Can't See New York
Upside Down (with band)
The latest reviews are at the bottom of this page, and I am adding reviews all the time. If you were at this show and want to send The Dent a review, please email Mikewhy at firstname.lastname@example.org with your review or comments.
You can also go to the Concert Reviews Forum and post about your experiences as well, or read additional reviews.
It was so nice to be in Chicago again seeing Tori! I always enjoy myself so much in this city, and Tori seems to have strong affections for it as well.
We arrived at the Auditorium Theatre around 6:00PM and starting meeting a ton of people we have not seen since the last tour. It was so good to see all the familiar faces, and to meet some of you for the very first time. If you came up and said hello, thank you so much. Meeting other fans is as important to us as the concert itself!
The show was really fun. Seeing Tori again was incredible, and the show flowed really well. Tori seemed to have a lot of energy and she sounded really strong and expressive. There were no huge surprises in the set list tonight, but there were some really fun and emotional moments.
I am still surprised how intense the ending of Crucify is, despite the fact that I have seen it many times. It reminds me at times of how Tori ended The Waitress during her 98 and 99 tours.
After Bliss, Tori said hello and said "Drove into town this morning" and began a really cute improv about Chicago and Tash. Her words included, "Seven... we were sleeping... until I heard a little voice that said 'Mommy I got a song I wrote last night. I know where we are.' You do? You're only two? She said 'Chicago Chicago, My kind of town... I'm going to make myself up for your show.' You are? I love this town." She repeated the "Chicago Chicago, My kind of town" line a second time as well. It was an adorable improv!
Take To The Sky is as amazing as ever, with the ever groovy "I feel the Earth move under my feet" ending. At one point, Tori sings "is like, is like, is like, is like, is like, is like Russia" which was really powerful.
At the start of her solo set of songs Tori waved to the crowd and then specifically waves to the people in the highest balcony. You have to see the theatre to see what I mean. This place had 3-4 balconies, and the last one was the highest balcony I ever saw...scraping the ceiling of the theatre. Tori waved to them and said, "I don't want to make you nervous, but you have balls. I couldn't do that.... I'm so impressed. What are your names? " Then Tori addresses everyone and says, "I'll miss you guys..." then she paused, laughed, and said, "until tomorrow....". (Tori may have initially forgotten she would be performing in Chicago again the next day, then did!)
Crazy and Seaside were both quite slow and soft tonight. This was my first time hearing Seaside live. Then she did Vincent (Starry Starry Night) and I had one of those "Tori Moments" when the music grabs me and doesn't let go for a while. This was the first time I had heard this song as well, and it was achingly beautiful, and made me quite emotional. I never realized how beautiful that song was until now. It was worth the price of admission simply to see that song!
Jon's bass was really loud where we were sitting, and it made my heart jump around during Lust!
I enjoyed Father Lucifer immensely. There were lots of big smiles from Tori and looks directed toward the band.
Finally, I got to hear in person her new version of Upside Down with the band, and I was most impressed. This was the very first Tori song I fell in love with in 1992, and I was surprised how good it sounded with the band.
Tori stuck very closely to her written set list. She did have three songs listed on her written set list for the second encore, but decided to not perform Pancake, which was supposed to be the middle song of the second encore.
Overall, it was a super day and an excellent first show for us on the Lottapianos tour. It will be interesting to see how Monday's nights Chicago show on Navy Pier goes!
Hello there. This is the first time I've ever written in a review. Tori started the night off with the recorded version of "Wampum Prayer" and went into "A Sorta Fairytale" as she had done at the other shows (as I've read on your website). A very overdone and drowned out "Crucify" followed. I guess my major complaint with a lot of Tori shows lately is that she uses the band for 90% of her show and they can be overpowering at times. I really feel that sometimes the musicians (although very talented) keep the same groove and tempo for much of her songs-making them sound redundant and well, less intriguing. Also, they need to quit using so much reverb on her beautiful voice. Sometimes simplicity can be much more powerful and effective. In fact, the best part of the show in my view was the three song suite she performed alone with just her and her piano. She wasn't drowned out by anything and thus was able to truly captivate the audience. There were some highlights with the band though-"Cornflake Girl" was of course excellent. "Lust" sounded great and "Precious Things" kicked ass-all songs where the band needed to be present. Pretty good show overall. Ben Folds was phenomenal and really provided what Tori used to at her shows- acoustic, dynamic and powerful piano playing with soulful singing without the any frills. He truly drew the audience into his songs with his stories although the music itself would've done the trick alone. Ben Folds was probably one of the best openers that I've seen in a really long time.
From Tod (Preciousboy):
Hi there this is coming to you from Tod (Preciousboy). The show tonite was not my favorite...I've seend her 15 times after tonite and do have fonder memories. Any ways the one thing that did make my night was that I did have my ticket signed by Mark and at the end of the show he gave me the original printed set list which I've never got to have before...
Hotel was easily the best performance of the night.
From Aura and Canton:
I thought the show was really amazing. Tori seemed very happy, smiling the whole time. Although, during Crucify she drooled all over herself and the piano. She had big gobs of spit falling all over the place. It was pretty disgusting, but kinda funny at the same time.
According to the light stage's set list, Bliss was supposed to be played before Crucify, but those were switched, and on the set list Pancake was supposed to be played between Upside Down and Horses, but that was obviously left out. I think those are the only differences.
The venue was gorgeous. There were five balconies, which was amazing to me. I've never been at a concert hall that was that TALL before. She also did a cute little ditty about Tash and Chicago. I guess Joel has been an interesting influence on that child.
Well it's been way to long for me since the last time I saw Tori play live... due to some unlucky tour timing (did she really have to come through Chicago at Thanksgiving last year? ;o ) and due to a lot of having a 2 year old at home, the last tour I saw was 5 weeks... (wow that was a long time ago)
The show last night was really a great night. The beginning of the show was on FIRE! fairytale, Crucify, Bliss, God... Wow! All of them rockin', and all of them wonderful. But does it let up there? No! Bells For Her was really beautiful and powerful with the band. Next up was Take to the Sky. The groove for that just gets ahold of you and you can't resist it! So much fun! Past the Mission was really great to hear as well!
Of the solo songs, Crazy was really the standout for me. What a beautiful song! and Tori sounded so good! When she started in on Vincent, I was excited to hear it, but in the end it really didn't do anything for me.
For the second half of the show the real high spots for me were Lust, Cornflake Girl, Hotel, and Precious Things. Overall the second half of the show was a little subdued after the amazing start.
The four songs in the encores were all wonderful. All of them are just great songs, and all of them were performed with such great energy and they were really a great ending to a great show.
I am (of course) a big Tori fan, but I'm also a Ben Folds fan, so this really was a GREAT double-bill for me. Ben's show is really fun, and really shouldn't be missed! Highlights included BEAUTIFUL renditions of The Luckiest, and Brick, and the always fun Stevens Last Night in Town, Army, and Rockin' the Suburbs. His improv Chicago song was also fun (it's a Waltz...). He also gets the award for the best use of the audience as a horn section...
From Candace Brendler:
For a more "condensed and to-the-point" version of my rant, see Renee's review of last night's show.
To explain my background:
I have wildly flocked to see Tori whenever she comes around ever since I first saw her on the Boys For Pele tour (except for the Strange Little Tour, when I was backpacking out west and the nearest theatre was hundreds of miles away). I also had a brief stint with the DC area Purple people (woohoo!), and I have never posted a review.
It is always wonderful to see Tori - there's always so much energy flowing between her and the audience. And last night (in Chi town) she was absolutely glamourous (as usual).
But I'm going to have to agree with Renee about the band being incredibly overpowering. There was so much bass and drums that I could hardly hear her voice or her piano! I was terribly frustrated throughout most of the show because of this. I remember how I used to jump with recognition as she played the first few notes of her songs, but last night she would get through half a song before I caught on. I'm not saying that ALL of the songs with the band were drowned out by reverb & feedback, but I found that the vast majority of them were. And I must say that I cherished her quiet time without the band. I don't know what I would give to see her tour without the band, or even with the band scaled down.
I was also dissapointed by the lack of interaction that she had with the audience. Again, there was energy, but not much in the way of interaction. Sure she told the people in the upper balcony that they've got balls for being up there (trust me... they DO), and then there was the thing about Tash singing about being in Chicago, but that was about it. I almost feel like she thinks her fans are so connected that they know all of the stories already, can hear them from each other and from sites like The Dent, and don't need to hear them from her anymore. I guess this is just me saying that I wish she'd talk to the audience a bit more... tell more stories about her songs.
I went to this show with my boyfriend - he's a Tori fan but has never been to a show and has only extensively listened to a few albums. He was dissapointed because he felt like in order to really enjoy the show and to know what she was playing you had to be an absolute die-hard fan who can hear through the distortion and the band.
I'm not trying to compare Tori to Ben Folds here - I am a fan of both of them, but I really like the type of show he puts on. The shows are simple; no flashing lights, just him, a piano, his song and his stories. And when he did that thing with the drum-kit, not only did I almost fall over laughing, but I thought, "I would LOVE to see Tori do this." (If you don't know what I'm talking about, you'll find out if/when you go to the show).
So, that's my rant. Don't let it stop you from enjoying the show if you haven't been already. I am still a fan of Tori and her music, I'm just hoping that some day in the not-so-distant-future she will either tour with a toned down band, or perhaps leave them at home.
From Keri Walters:
I strongly agree with Renee's assessment of the concert in Chicago on August 10. While I enjoyed it very much, the reverb on Tori's voice was too strong and overly used. In my opinion, she does not need this special effect and sounds much better without the reverb, which took away from the experience rather than adding to it. Perhaps they may have underestimated the wonderful acoustics that already exist in the Auditorium Theater. Jon's bass, although very original and cool, was too strong for the space and from where I was sitting, was simply drowning out Tori's vocals and piano half the time. This was disappointing. On a brighter note, I loved her set list for the evening and was thrilled to hear a broad range of songs from past to present. And her solo work, as always, was stunning. Don't get me wrong, I love the band, (Matt is so creative on the drums, I especially like his work) I just think the sound was completely off balance at this concert. Ben Folds was the best opener ever and was simply amazing.
It was great to see you at the show. I didn't get to talk to you, but I saw you way up front. Great seats you had! I was in Row E on the right side of the orchestra, so mine weren't too shabby either.
I was told that there was no meet and greet, just as you have mentioned on the website, but it seemed like Joel made himself very available to fans before the show, both outside the auditorium and inside. Perhaps to take any urgent messages back to Tori? I walked up to talk to him, but froze... just as I do when I have been near anyone famous. I'm such a spaz (tee hee)! (Someone told me that Neil G was out front and did his own little M&G that afternoon.)
Last night was another amazing show for me. My third since last November. Amazing how Tori can continue to give such powerful performances! She truly is powered by forces from some other dimension, isn't she?
a sorta fairytale was funkier than any other of the three performances that I have seen this year.
Crucify was rivetting! She started the song lying horizontally between her keyboards (an impressionistic crucifixion?), balanced on the piano bench.
Bells For Her was also deliciously disturbing. Omnious and encroaching. I felt as if there were some terrible monster encroaching on the theatre as she finished the song... "can't stop what is on its way". Terrifying! I loved it!
Virginia and Crazy were more beautiful than ever live! They have always been favorites of mine, but last night they shot into the stratosphere!
She was so adorable as she played Hotel, whirling from keyboard to keyboard. The second time she spun she almost missed the downbeat as Matt picked the song back up. She smiled at him at her near-miss but he was so into the song, just poundning away. The organic give and take of the band is something I am really beginning to appreciate. But there is nothing quite like solo Tori at the Roadside Cafe! Vincent was amazing and shimmering. I had never heard her play that live.
I feel so honored to be hearing Tori at this time in her career, at the peak of her powers.
Who knows? Maybe this isn't her peak even yet! Be Still My Heart!
We were sitting about 11 rows back on the right side. Ben Folds was a fantastic opening act- he really involved the audience, had us singing, and was extremely personable. He was also too loud at times, but the way he was banging the heck out of his piano may have explained that!
Then Tori came on. She seemed happy, perhaps a touch tired. She had on a very interesting garment, as she has been doing for this whole tour- very light tan and dark brown diagonal stripes on an asymmetrical fitted top, with very flowy sleeves, it looked like a dark orange tank top, her jean capris, and incredibly high heels.
Unfortunately, I can't really comment on the music, because the sound was just atrocious. It was too loud. The bass was clipping the amps about every 5 seconds- that's a big, big no-no. The only thing that wasn't too loud was her piano, which you could hardly hear! I'm very upset at the sound for this entire tour- every show I've seen is the same except for the Soundstage taping, where her sound guys didn't control the sound. They are driving their sound system far too hard, it's just too loud, and the resulting sound is a big muddy mess. John was doing all sorts of interesting bass work that was simply unintelligible through the amps clipping, and I felt bad that Tori was probably playing through hand pain and we couldn't hear it anyway. I have two theories. One is that the sound is being cranked way up to reach the back of the theater. However, the acoustics of that place take care of that, and all they end up getting is louder mud instead of quieter music. Secondly, when you could hear her piano during the café', it sounded fantastic. Her voice was actually overamped, (and over processed- ugh), and so it was very hard to hear anything she said, especially to hear the lyrics of the songs. So my theory there is that her sound guys are very good at miking and amplifying her piano- but nothing else.
It was an extremely disappointing show that I sat through half of with my fingers in my ears because the volume caused me physical pain (I already have some hearing loss). But, again, the biggest problem wasn't volume- it was the resultant clipping and distortion and muddiness of the sound. The band also didn't let up sometimes during a song when they probably should have- sometimes they seemed to make noise just to make noise. Sometimes I really, really enjoyed them, such as on take to the sky, but not always.
Read a review of this show from The Chicago Tribune.
Read a review of this show from the Chicago Sun-Times.
From Hannah W.:
We got there at about 6:45 (show starts at 7..well, opener starts at 7) and parked in the lot accross the street, which happened to be valet. Then we waited in line to enter the theatre. We got into the theatre and the lines split into men and woman, so we could be checked for cameras and the like. The woman were just getting their purses checked, but the men had to empty their pockets. My dad had a small pocketknife with him, and they told him he had to go put it in the car. So we went back to the car, dropped off the pocketknife, and went back. This time, we just happened to stand in a different line, and they ONLY checked you if you had a purse. So we could have walked right through with ANYTHING (aka recorder) very easily in this line.
We got inside and went over to the place were they were selling things. It was really expensive, 35$ for a tshirt, and 20$ for a tourbook. I bought this tshirt:
Then we went and got our seats. The seats were FANTASTIC, they were dead center and about 7 rows back. The first 5 rows were just chair set up because thats were the orchestra plays, so we were in the 2nd row of nice seats.
Ben Folds was opening and played for about an hour. He sucked. No more said.
After Ben Folds, Tori came on about 45 minutes later. The lights dimmed, and everyone cheered. Then came the recorded Wampum Prayer. Then everyone in the left part of the audience started cheering. Tori was coming in from the right side of the stage, and only people in the left bit of audience were diagonally positioned as to see her come out. She was wearing a very light brown and dark brown or blacked striped thing. It was long and made out of thin flowly material. The sleeves were very flowy. It came together right under the bust, and then seperated again a little below the waist of the pants. Under the flowy thing she was wearing a dark red tank, and light blue capris. She was also wearing very high strappy heals, I think they were red. He hair was down, and looked kind of stringy. She needs to use more conditioner . When Tori came out, she bowwed to the audience really low, I actually think she was kneeling on the ground.
A Sorta Fairytale sounded like A Sorta Fairytale, obviously. There was not much difference from the studio version. Crucify was next, with a really long drawn out ending. Instead of doing cha-ee-aa-ee-aans like on the albums versions, it was a chains split into about two parts with eco. During crucify, at the end, she was holding a long note, and TONS of druel fell ALL over in strings onto the piano or her lap. It was really gross. Tori didn't even move to wipe it off.
Next was Bliss, which is my favorite song from To Venus and Back. She sang it really well, I thought the band was a little loud at the begining though. The chorus was really good, loud, and hard. Just like on the album, she sand "bleeeeees of another kind" instead of bliss.
Next came her improv, which was really cute. She started with something about the morning, then she looked at her drummer and asked him "what time do you get in? About 7?" and then she sang how it was seven, and her daughter was telling her she was writing a new song. And her duaghter said "I know were we are" and tori says "you do?" and her duaghter says yes, and then tori sings "chicago, chicago, my kind of town, chicago." The song went on in a similar fashion.
Next was God. My favorite line from the song is "wou you even tell her if you decide to make the sky fall." Tori really blasted this line out and it sounded really great and angry. Following was Bells For Her, which was a nice Under the Pink surprise. This song I liked a lot more live than studio. The studio version seemed to be lacking a little bit of emotion, which the live version contained, expecially at the last "can't stop what's coming." After Bells For Her was Take to the Sky. This could quite possibly be my favorite single live, and it was really great. I knew it was Take to the Sky right away because Tori was banging on the drum. The 2nd time the song goes "this house is like russia," Tori sang, "This house is like, is like, is like, is like..." Then, at the last chorus bit where she says "take to the sky," Tori sang "take to, take to, take to..." It was cute and I'm pretty sure it was an improvision. There was some music at the end which wasn't in the live versions I have, and I realized she was going into the "I Feel the Earth Move" ending. I was estatic, the ending was so happy and bouncy. Some people got up and danced crazily. Tori looked like she was having fun.
Next was Pass the Mission. It sounded better than I expected even though it was missing the male vocals. The "she found a body" part sounded good and charged live. Then was Wednesday. She held the "out" at the start of the chorus longer than the album version. After the bit with "eagle has to land," the audience would make chirps like an eagle. Tori would count out three beats on her fingers before going on.
Then the band left. The theatre has 4 or 5 balconies, one ontop of another. Tori told the audience that anyone sitting up there had balls, and that she could never sit that high, and what are there names?. It was somewhere around here that Tori turned to the audience and said "I'm gonna miss you all so much- until tomorow night." The roadside cafe sign came down as tori began singing Crazy. I liked Crazy better live than studio also, just as in Bells for Her, it sounded more emotional. Following was Seaside. I LOVE this single and it was very sweet with just Tori, her mourningful voice, and the piano. The audience was very quiet throughout the song. Following was a slow, twinkly version of Starry Night.
At this point I decided I loved Tori by herself with the piano, and wished the band wasn't going to come back, but the did. After the band returned, Lust began. I'm not a monster fan of this song, but it sounded more bliss/concertina-ish live. That annoying dribbling sound in the studio version was not present in the live, thank god.
After Lust, the background changed from the brown and black medicine wheel to "Her," the face with leaves as hair. Next was Father Lucifer. The "nothing's gonna stop me" part sounded less high live, and very smooth and it seemed like Tori was very into it. When Tori sang "girls that eat pizza and never gain weight," she gave the audience the finger!
Following was cornflake girl. THe intricit piano work stuck out a lot more in this live version that in the studio. Tori was really pounding on the piano and it sounded amazing. At the "and the man" part, Tori would nod or shake her head in place of the words "the golden gun." After Cornflake Girl was Rattlesnakes. This song never stuck out to me much on the CD, but live it was fantastic. The quicker parts were smoother, faster, and more confidently sung than on the studio version. The music didn't sound as bland as the studio, and neither did the opening nor closing. "On account of the rattlesnakes" was stuck in my head the whole night. I couldn't listen to the studio version once I got home though, because I don't let myself listen to an artist till I write the concert review for fear of forgeting something or assuming it to be like the studio.
Following was Hotel, out only Chiorgirl song. This song was never a choirgirl favorite of mine, but it was the best song of the night, The verses siynded smooth, unstrained, and pleasantly complicated and wordy. She sand confidently and the backup music was great. Next was Can't See New York. Like in Seaside, the audience was very quiet. It was achingly beautiful, but we all knew the achingly wild (if that makes sense ) Precious Things was up next, In Precious Things, the bit where Tori sings, "that doesn't make you Jesus," the audience went crazy cheering. At the near end, Tori was holding a long note, and more druel fell from her mouth. She continued playing piano after she finished the note, but had this gross look on her face. I don't know if it was about the druel, but it was funny.
After, Tori stood up and walked along the front of the stage and did this cute little wave by opening and closing both hands. Tori left the stage, and the lights dimmed then went off. We stood up when Tori had gotten up from the piano, and we remanded standing througout the entire encor. Tori came back out and gave a little bow, then went over to the piano. I believe it was here were she put both arms out and let her long sleaves flow over the piano on one side and keyboard on the other. A song started to play, but I didn't recognize it at all. Then, as Tori started singing, I relized it was Talula! Talula sounded REALLY different than the studio- not at all harpsicord-y nor sharp. They needed to turn down the bass. The bridge was very amzingly good. For all the choruses but the last chorus, she sang them kind of like lachalalalala instead of the Talula chorus. The last chorus was the same as the studio.
Following was Virginia. In the studio Virginia, I loved the song, but usually stopped it at the long, layered, eco-y, bit that consisted of the name Virginia sung over and over. Live,that part sounded great and melodic, while I thought the chorus had to much eco. It had a much more adventerous rock flare than the studio. It was written in the setlist that Tori would play Pancake in the first encor. She didn't play it, but she did the following night.
Tori left the stage again and we kept clapping. Her band came back on and started playing. I noticed the band had a "waiting: tune with they played now, while waiting for Tori after Wampum Prayer, and while waiting for Tori at the first encor. Tori came out, ran her hand through a few people in the audience, and sat back at the piano. Upside Down began. It was very different live than studio, a lot more rock. I can't decide which I liked better, though I wish you could have heard more piano live. That was my major complaint of the show- too much distorted bass and hardly any piano..and too much eco on her voice. Following was Horses, the night's closing song. Tori sand this very sadly. I've read that a lot of people don't like Horses live, but I thought it was gorgeus and a perfect way to end the night, even thought it begins Pele.