The start time of the show was contested- as it turns out, it was thirty minutes later than what was posted on the venue’s website. Okay, fine, it happens. Thirty minutes isn’t that bad.

The band came on a bit late, and the lead singer (John) preached about not missing your life because you have your nose buried in your cell phone. It was fine, the crowd was into it. They played a few songs, they were playing well, but John said he was sick and did a lot of random chatting between songs that didn’t really go anywhere.

John announced that there was going to be an intermission and then a second set. And of course there was a long, drawn-out explanation of the intermission as well. They played for forty minutes before the intermission, which was fifteen minutes. Forty minutes isn’t a very long set, but he said he was sick so I’ll make an allowance.

So the fifteen minute intermission is over and John came out by himself. They had put a potted tree on the stage at the beginning of the intermission and when John came back he explained that they were going to give it away to someone in the audience. Naturally, this got the drunk, impatient crowd very excited. Over the din, John then tried to explain that he would only give it to someone quiet- after rambling on about why they were doing this and how it was all on their website and on and on.

Of course people were not quiet. There were three or four guesses before someone guessed live oak, which it was, but John didn’t know that. Apparently he was told the wrong kind of tree, so he kept taking guesses- and when it started taking too long he whipped out his cell phone to try to look up alternate names for the tree, because he didn’t understand why no one was guessing it. The crowd was getting rowdy, and John ended up calling someone up to the stage to claim the tree and then rescinding the invitation when he realized that guess was incorrect. John then decided to find the person who had originally guessed live oak.

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John himself was getting cranky at this point, trying to fight the crowd for quiet so he could hear the people he called on for guesses. He got angry at the person who had told him what kind of tree it was. After he FINALLY picked someone, he gave a long, antagonistic speech to the guy about how he was entering into a binding contract to care for the tree and send pictures of himself with it every year. Even after he finally got the tree off of the stage he started telling the audience that we should hold the guy accountable, harass him about caring for the tree if we see him. Not a very peaceful approach for someone who claims to be so anti-hate. At one point John started cursing and said “I hate this, now I don’t even want to play the second set,” and upon hearing this the drummer got off of his platform and started walking away- apparently John has made good on those threats in the past.

The band still played well, but there was a very negative vibe going from then on. People in the crowd were heckling the band, and a few songs into the second set someone collapsed and they had to stop playing and turn on the house lights. I took that as my cue to leave.

I’m glad I got to see Cake live again, but I think I’m done now.

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