Heineken Inspire Miami
With the Hold Steady, Cold War Kids, and Chad Hugo
The Moore Building, Miami
Friday, May 21, 2010
Click here to view all the photos from the event.
It's difficult to devote more than a couple of lines to the music at Heineken Inspire Miami when this concert was mostly devoted to the beer. In the expanses of the beautiful historic-meets-modern Moore Building in Miami's Design District, the three-level spectacle had kegs rolling by on hand trucks, fridges filled with bottles of Heineken and its various offshoots, Wii game stations, food stands serving paella, tacos, mini burgers and meatballs, a T-shirt screen-printing stand, and somehow only one men's bathroom. From time to time, music worked its way in, but mostly the assembled had to consider where the mobile DJ stand hanging from the ceiling would drop to the floor or if they cared to find an unobstructed view of the stage. Free beer is free beer is free beer, though.
Beauty was in the eye of the beholder, with a gorgeous, refurbished building lit up by a lot of green lettering and red stars. Aside from the bright glow of the many bars where the free suds poured, an LED display sparkled from the railings around the space's central atrium. As a result, the concert never reached a proper darkness, which would have helped center the audience's attention on the featured entertainment -- and away from the plasma screens. Directly across from the well-barracaded stage on the second level, each of the night's bands had a spot reserved for them that lit up with their names like this: Chad Hugo, Cold War Kids, and the Hold Steady.
And these acts entertained as best they could. Cold War Kids especially
had their work cut out for them after guitarist Jonathon Russell took a nasty spill, injured his hand and had to head to the
hospital. As a
three-piece, CWK pulled it together. For about three-quarters of an hour, singer Nathan
Willet's powerful voice dominated the room, spanning the band's career, including their breakout
2006 smash "Hang Me Up to Dry" and passionate set-closer "Saint John." Incidentally: