Soul Asylum at the Paradise on August 4

A Review of Soul Asylum at the Paradise on August 4, 2006

, Staff

Amidst another comeback tour, Dave Pirner led Soul Asylum back to Boston for a gig at the Paradise Rock Club last Friday (August 4). While cynics may argue that nothing is left in their tank, the Minneapolis band proved otherwise.

Soul Asylum is hitting the road to showcase The Silver Lining, the band’s first release in eight years. The new album is a fitting tribute to their late bassist and co-founder Karl Mueller, who died last year from throat cancer (he is credited for contributing bass on close to half the album).

The album kicks off with the lead single and inspirational rocker, “Stand Up and Be Strong.” Pirner sings “You might have to fight/You might have to cry/Stand up and be strong.” With such lyrics, it was by no coincidence that Soul Asylum was invited to play for a Jimmy Fund fundraiser as part of the opening ceremonies of the Pan-Mass Challenge in Sturbridge prior to the show.

The Silver Lining is very top heavy but the first half of the album is great. “Lately” contemplates the consequences of war (attn: George W. Bush) while “Crazy Mixed Up World” is a catchy sing-a-long about society today. Other standouts include “Bus Named Desire,” “Watcha Need,” and “All Is Well.” At the Paradise, most of the above faired even better. However, the ‘dise show was not limited to all new material as the band delivered the tunes that most in attendance were hoping to hear.

Soul Asylum pulled out a bunch of old classics, delighting the crowd with fan favorites "Cartoon," “Black Golds”, “Summer Of Drugs”, and “Somebody To Shove”. Of course, the band’s staple “Runaway Train” sparked a sing-a-long from the paradise faithful.

Though it was difficult and odd to see Soul Asylum without Muller on bass, the band appeared tight on stage. Standing strong together, the band proved at the ‘dise they are far from a nostalgic act but rather, just primed for a return to the spotlight.

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