Went to see a personal favorite of mine lastnight, Tommy Castro, playing at Johnny D's in Sommerville, MA (just north of Boston). First of all, great player, great songs, great band, if you ever get the chance to see him, DO IT.
Aside from the music though, the thing that really struck me about this gig was the volume. If you've ever been to Johnny D's (which I realize, probably most of you haven't), it's not a huge place. Definitely not a hole in the wall either, but any touring band could blow the roof off the place volume wise, no problem. But the thing about this gig was that they didn't, and man, was it refreshing. Tommy got up to play, and I noticed he was using a Mesa TA15 or TA30, not sure which, but it really wasn't turned up that loud, even for that size of amp. Same goes for the rest of the band, and the house PA. But their mix was just right to where everything fit together just right sonically - I could hear guitar solos, keys, bass, drums, vocals, and none of it was so frickin loud that it was annoying, as many shows tend to be. And the crowd loved the show, it was easy to listen to without getting a headache or feeling like you're going deaf!
I have to say, unless I'm at a stadium or arena gig, I really don't care for stadium volume shows. Anyone else with me?