photos by Rich Britton
Last Saturday, KEXP hosted their final concert at the Mural Amphitheatre with performances by the recently (and temporarily?) reunited Goodness along with local pop-punk powerhouse Ms. Led. I’m going to go ahead and pull the typical Seattleite move here and talk about the weather. Yes, I believe last Saturday will be the last day of summer and sun we will see (note: I’m not a meteorologist, just realistic) and Goodness delivered a performance worthy of all the sun that was soaked-up by the lawn full of music lovers. It was an amazing, warm, sunny, end-of-summer blow out. Good timing, KEXP.
Here’s what I love about reunion shows: the band has that first-show excitement, but they actually have their songs nailed. Carrie Akre paced and pounded around the stage, fiercely delivering what she had to say to captive and nostalgic ears. As a bonus, the remarkably awesome-sounding PA had the guitars and other instruments balanced so well that, sitting in the sweet spot in the middle of the crowd, I felt like I was getting a spotless live show in my own back yard (if my yard had a Space Needle and a few hundred strangers).
I’m a relatively recent transplant to Seattle and the show at the Mural was a fantastic introduction to the band. Prior to the performance, I asked around for a back-in-the-day description of what a Goodness show looked like and all of answers to my very non-scientific query went sort of like this: “Oh, they were AMAZING! I mean Carrie Akre… voice… incredible songwriting. And very, very under-publicized and under-appreciated.” Goodness was formed in the mid-90’s after singer Carrie Akre’s departure from Hammerbox. It seems as though Goodness was a bit ahead of their time — their upbeat pop-rock was the antithesis of the dying grunge scene where angst and gruff vocals ruled. Did the country stop caring about Seattle music by the time Goodness came around?
No, actually. Ms. Led signer, Lesli Wood, cites Carrie Akre and Goodness as her main inspirations for transplanting herself from Detroit to Seattle in the mid-90’s. The first show Lesli Wood saw upon arrival to Seattle was a Goodness show and says that the show at the Mural Amphitheatre brought her involvement in the Seattle music community full-circle. Imagine sharing a bill with one of your favorite bands? Ms. Led did not hold back and far exceeded the amount of rock ‘n’ roll throwdown necessary to pay their respect to Goodness. The show was solid summer rock, beginning to end.