The Annex
Madison, WI

To say I was overly excited to see Powerman5000 would’ve been a massive understatement. This was my first time seeing them. I have been a fan for a long time roughly 23 years. Their tour dates just never seemed to work out for me. Midwest Mix-up announced this show over a year ago. I marked my calendar and circled it twice as covid shut it down the first time. When the day arrived, I was ready and one of the first people in line to enter.

To enter The Annex you must walk through the Red Zone bar. There were a ton of people waiting around, but no one lined up. Being the guy I am, I walked and stood right at the front of the line. As you enter The Annex you pass through the security check and the ticketing table. Then you turn left into the main room. On your right are the merch tables. There an abundant amount of rad shirts were available, but nothing in my size. Sometimes it sucks being a bigger guy. Next to the merch tables is a massive bar area. As you pass through, you move into the actual music room. From there I posted up just right of dead center.

Powerman5000’s setup had the two guitarists on each end of the stage, the bassist stage left of center, with the drum kit straight back center in front of a massive PM5K aliens head logo. They pumped an obscene amount of smoke along the floor the lighting flipped to a vibrant blue. The members of Powerman5000 entered the stage wearing laser cuffs that they pointed to and waved across the room. They wasted no additional time and lept right into “Footsteps and Voices.” The frontman and band founder, Spider One, walked onto the stage. For the moment, the crowd went bonkers. Spider was his notable high-energy self. He dished out an abundance of fist pumps and flashed his Billy Idol-style lip curl throughout the show. The spirit of rock was alive and well. The setlist covered their entire career. They threw in a few songs I didn’t expect. Mainly, “Invade, Destroy, and Repeat” and “Play God or Play Dead”. Not only that, right in the middle of “Horror Show” they switched up to play “7 Nation Army” by The White Stripes. It was a seamless transition into the song and out of it.

The audience was a mixture of young and old, mostly in the 30+ range. At the end of the night, Spider brought up an insightful observation, a portion of the crowd were not even born when their first few albums were released. He also went on to say it is a pretty awesome thing for the band’s longevity. I wholeheartedly agree. This show lived up to my expectations. After witnessing the event, it wasn’t a surprise they continue to fill venues night after night. The bombshell was definitely dropped.

1. Footsteps and Voices
2. Nobody’s Real
3. Invade, Destroy, Repeat
4. Hey, That’s Right
5. Super Villain
6. Play God or Play Dead
7. Black Lipstick
8. How To Be Human.
9. Horror Show
10. 7 Nation Army(cover)
11. V is For Vampire
12. Bombshell
13. Supernova Goes Pop
14. When Worlds Collide.

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