First Avenue presents The Eels.

The Eels are a special type of music, an indie rock that has a very specific feel to it.  I remember when I first purchased their album “Beautiful Freak”, simply because of the cover of the album.  If you haven’t seen it, look it up.  I didn’t know any of their music and bought it on a whim.  It was a good option.  I got the album when I was thirteen, so I’m not sure if they have become more popular or if since I’m older, I’m just seeing more of them.  Either way, they’ve been to Minneapolis quite a bit and as put on a great show.
The set began with frontman, Mark Oliver Everett, saying, “Are you ready to soft rock?”  Great opening, in my opinion.  There were quite a few moments of him joking about the age of the audience, which was for the most part middle aged.  We’re all aware that nine o’clock was the perfect time to go on stage, as we had things to do after the show, like going home, going to bed, and getting up for work the next day.  I have to say that  I greatly appreciate when artists are aware of their core audience’s nature and go on stage at a decent hour.  It gets tough when you’ve hit a certain age to wait for the show to start at ten or ten thirty.
Although The Eels name may not resound familiarity with everyone, there are certainly songs that people will recognize.  “My Beloved Monster” is from the “Shrek” soundtrack.  “Novocain for the Soul” was also quite popular on the radio stations in the 90s, winning The Eels several music video awards.  And of course, there was their cover of Prince’s “Raspberry Beret”.  However, the song I was most excited to hear live was “Fresh Blood”.  In case the song sounds super familiar to you but you can’t place it, just think back a few years.  It was used as the theme song in one of HBO’s most popular true crime shows, “The Jinx”.  Such a creepy song.
Overall, great show.  It has been less than a year since The Eels were in Minneapolis and there is a reason for that.  They do a damn good job and people really enjoy their shows.  They’re a lot of fun and play to their audience, which is something you may not realize you appreciate until you see it.
Review Tracy Hansen photos Todd Johnson