Enlightened. Passionate. Humble. Genius. Chris Cornell.
Review by Steph Perry
Chris Cornell performed his Songbook show at the Shubert Theater in New Haven on November 20. Like the last Songbook tour, his set consisted of solo material, songs from Soundgarden, Audioslave, Temple of the Dog, and various cover songs. Chris immediately connected with the audience with his intimate takes on some of his best pieces of music. Alone with an acoustic guitar and microphone, he transformed each song in ways that were deep and meaningful.
Many audience members shouted or held up signs naming a song they wanted to hear. Chris obliged many of them. He even made up a short song on the spot when someone suggested the title – I live in water. It was a comical story about a killer whale pissed off at his trainers. This brought howls of laughter from the crowd.
His voice was immaculate, hitting each high and low with abandon. His guitar work was big and awesome. At two points in the show he put down the guitar and sang along to record album recordings. It was cool to see him work the turntable and then walk back and forth across the stage while focusing on his vocals.
There were too many tender moments to name, but hearing him talk about his dearly departed friends Andrew Wood and Natasha Shneider were memorable. Cornell shared his thoughts on many of the songs, including how he put Metallica’s lyrics to U2’s music on the song One. He’s clearly a big music fan like the rest of us and he makes you feel welcome and wanted. Truly a magical night.
Set list – Silence the Voices, Can’t Change Me, I Am the Highway (Audioslave), You Know My Name, Original Fire (Audioslave), Wide Awake (Audioslave), Billie Jean (Michael Jackson cover), All Night Thing (Temple of the Dog), Outshined (Soundgarden), Sunshower, I Live in Water (made up on the spot), Halfway There (Soundgarden), Fell on Black Days (Soundgarden), Seasons, The Day I Tried to Live (Soundgarden), One (U2 cover with Metallica lyrics), When I’m Down, Man of Golden Words / Comfortably Numb (Mother Love Bone/Pink Floyd cover), Wooden Jesus (Temple of the Dog), Call Me a Dog (Temple of the Dog), Hunger Strike (Temple of the Dog), Like a Stone (Audioslave), Folsom Prison Blues (Johnny Cash cover), Doesn’t Remind Me (Audioslave), Sweet Euphoria, Blow Up the Outside World (Soundgarden), Encore: Thank You (Led Zeppelin cover), Be Yourself (Audioslave), Black Hole Sun (Soundgarden), A Day in the Life (The Beatles cover).
November 20, 2013