Live Review: Guided by Voices @ 9:30 Club — 6/18/22

Guided by Voices perform at 9:30 Club on June 18, 2022. (Photo by David LaMason)

For nearly 40 years, Bob Pollard has been leading Guided by Voices from the early lo-fi days to the slick production of major label offerings and then to the current powerhouse of Kevin March on drums, Doug Gilliard and Bobby Bare Jr. on guitar, and Mark Shue on bass. 

For the past several years, Guided by Voices has released, on average, two records of new material every year (though now it’s really closer to three albums per year), and they are putting out some of their strongest material perhaps in that entire period.  How does this band, who has released six albums just since the start of the Covid pandemic (and seven with July’s Tremblers and Goggles by Rank), keep things fresh?  The answer could be seen in Guided by Voices most recent visit to the 9:30 Club.

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Best of the Year: Top 10 Musical Moments of 2021 by David

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Bob Mould’s return to 9:30 Club in September ranked among David LaMason’s Best Shows of 2021. (Photo by David LaMason)

If you would have told me around this time last year that I would have had the opportunity to see concerts again, let alone in indoor venues -– some that I hadn’t stepped foot inside in over a year and half –- I would have thought you were crazy. But not only did I have that opportunity –- in large part to vaccines, mask mandates, and the venues and artists who did everything in their power to make sure it was safe to experience live music again –- but I saw some of the best shows I’ve seen in years!

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Song of the Day: “Mr. Child” by Guided by Voices

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Guided by Voices (Photo courtesy Tell All Your Friends PR)

Pandemic be damned, Guided By Voices have recorded their third album of 2020. This tremendous pace has kept the band in the news constantly this year, including five features in Rolling Stone, this time announcing their upcoming album Styles We Paid For, due out Dec. 11. They also have shared the first single, “Mr. Child.”

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Best of the Year: Top 10 Concerts of 2019 by David

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LP was one of David LaMason’s best concerts of the year. See where she ranked below. (Photo by David LaMason)

Editor’s Note: This year, we asked our bloggers to name their Top 10 shows of 2019 or choose their Top 10 photos of the year. We will run them over the course of mid-December as our Best of the Year posts.

It’s hard to think we’re nearing the end of 2019. I don’t realize how much has happened throughout the year until I look back and get that “Holy Cow! That was this year?” feeling. And I’ve been experiencing a lot of those lately.

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Live Review: Guided by Voices @ Black Cat — 12/7/19

GbVBC5 Guided by Voices performs at Black Cat on Dec. 7, 2019. (Photo by David LaMason)

There are things that are on almost everyone’s bucket list, but I submit here that among all the mountain sunrises, skinny dipping, and roller coaster rides there must be a space near the top for experiencing a Guided by Voices show. There’s nothing like it.

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Preview: Guided by Voices @ Black Cat, 12/7/19

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Guided by Voices (Photo courtesy Tell All Your Friends PR)

About a month ago, Guided by Voices released Sweating the Plague, the band’s third (!) new album this year. To say that frontman Robert Pollard and company are on a roll is an understatement, so catch the new stuff live and see for yourself when Guided By Voices play the Black Cat on Saturday, Dec. 7.

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Best of the Year: Top 10 Concerts of 2018 by David

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LP performs at the 9:30 Club, one of the best concerts of the year, on March 5, 2018. (Photo by David LaMason)

Editor’s Note: This year, we asked our bloggers to name their Top 10 shows of 2018 or choose their Top 10 photos of the year. We will run them over the course of mid-December as our Best of the Year posts.

As we are nearing 2018’s finale, I have to say that this past year brought with it some of the best shows I’ve seen in a long time. From the big production shows in large theaters to completely packed club shows, there was an intensity to most of the performances this past year that I’ll remember for years to come! Here are my 10 best shows of the year.

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Music Park: Top 10 Concerts of 2017 by David

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Lee Ranaldo kicks off a year of great music at the Rock and Roll Hotel on Jan. 20, 2017. (Photo by David LaMason)

The year 2017 has been full of contradictions. For many, myself included, it was a year filled with uncertainty and frustration, but to a certain degree it also woke people up. And the music that was created was some of the best in years.

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Snapshots: Guided by Voices @ Ottobar – 8/31/17

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Guided by Voices play to a sold-out Ottobar on Thursday, Aug. 31, 2017. (Photo by David LaMason)

Bob Pollard at this point could rest soundly on his impressive laurels — 25 Guided by Voices albums as of this writing, spanning nearly 35 years and 100 albums in total for Pollard himself. But as Bob pointed out very clearly at the Ottobar in Baltimore Thursday night, he’s not about to just play the hits! Teamed with Kevin March (drums), Bobby Bare, Jr. (guitar), Mark Shue (bass), and Doug Gillard (guitar), and a sizable cooler filled with Miller Light and tequila, the band played a sweaty and fun set to this sold-out crowd.

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