“Gotta see the show, ’cause then you’ll know,” sings Ed Robertson on Barenaked Ladies’ chart-topping hit, “One Week,” a song featured on the band’s new live album ‘BNL Rocks Red Rocks,’ recorded at the fabled Morrison, CO, Amphitheater on June 10, 2015 during the band’s Last Summer On Earth tour.
That’s as good a description as any about seeing these rock icons in concert, an experience filled with the kind of energy, precision, finesse and outright celebration among its fans that is a tribute to Barenaked Ladies’ remarkable longevity. The band is still together after nearly three decades, producing 14 studio albums which have collectively sold more than 14 million copies, won eight Juno Awards, earned multiple Grammy nominations, a U.S. chart-topping single (“One Week”) and the theme song to one of TV’s most popular shows, “The Big Bang Theory.”
“I don’t think there’s a secret,” Robertson explained to People magazine last year when asked how BNL managed to not just survive, but thrive, continuing to sell out venues wherever they go. “It’s work. You’ve got to respect each other, you got to give each other space, but you also have to support each other… This band learned early on to communicate, right from the beginning we didn’t want to burn out. We wanted to keep making music.”
‘BNL Rocks Red Rocks’ features some of the multi-platinum band’s biggest hits, including “One Week,” “Pinch Me, “If I Had $1,000,000” plus songs from their last two records including “Odds Are” which hit #2 at iTunes, and the most recent single “Duct Tape Heart” from their latest album ‘Silverball.’ The record includes a special moment when Barenaked Ladies accompany Colin Hay to perform his #1 hit “Who Can It Be Now?,” joined on stage by Blaise Garza of Violent Femmes to cover the famed saxophone solo, recognized around the world! And in a tradition BNL followers have come to expect, a rousing encore cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Rock and Roll” by Tyler Stewart with Ed Robertson on drums.
“We appreciate what we do more than ever,” explains Robertson. “We’re not looking for external validation. We’re enjoying working together and we’re doing some of the best shows of our entire career.”
‘BNL Rocks Red Rocks’ captures the group in all its glory, a living demonstration of their on-stage camaraderie, and the instrumental skills and finesse that expounds their durability in a pop music world of fleeting fame. Barenaked Ladies attack the audience from every angle with Ed Robertson’s witty, off-the-cuff commentary, Kevin Hearn’s multi-instrumental brilliance, a stunning stand-up bass solo on “Brian Wilson” by Jim Creeggan, and Tyler Stewart emerging from behind the drum-kit to sing lead vocals on both “Drawing” and “Rock and Roll”.
“I still love writing songs,” insists Robertson. “And it’s such a privilege to work with these guys. They have my back, and I have theirs. It’s pretty amazing to watch the crowd light up when we play a song we recorded 25 years ago, and then hear them sing along with something brand-new.”
‘BNL Rocks Red Rocks’ places you front and center for one of the most amazing — and, dare we say, fun — concerts on the current rock circuit. It also spotlights the band’s rapport with their rabid followers, a bond that is among the strongest in all of rock.
“Our fans have been on this journey with us, so we’ve kind of grown up together,” says Ed. “It’s a special relationship, within the band and between our fans. Every band says they have the best fans, but we actually do. And we know that because other bands tell us that.”
“It’s not easy to be hyperactive, brooding and whimsical all at once,” the New York Times pop critic Jon Pareles once wrote about BNL. “But the Barenaked Ladies do just that.”
The proof is on ‘BNL Rocks Red Rocks.’
Thank you Kansas City!