Reuniting with singer Ed Kowalczyk and touring with their founding lineup for the first time since 2009, chart-topping alternative rock band Live headlined Musikfest on the Sands Steel Stage at the SteelStacks in Bethlehem on Monday, Aug. 7.
The multi-platinum-selling rockers from York, Pennsylvania last played Musikfest back in 2002, and with the original group back together, it’s fitting that their return 15 years later was largely a throwback to their early days, mostly playing songs from “Throwing Copper” and “Mental Jewelry,” which was reissued this year for its 25th anniversary. Two songs each from No. 1 album “Secret Samadhi” and its platinum follow-up “The Distance to Here” showed up as well.
“We’re going to take you back to the days of much larger cellphones,” Kowalczyk joked to the crowd.
Drummer Chad Gracey, suffering an injury to his right arm, had help from a second drummer, and with acoustic tunes and covers of “I Walk the Line” by Johnny Cash and Audioslave’s “I Am the Highway,” a tribute to “the incomparable Chris Cornell,” Kowalczyk said, Live kept the 15-song set interesting and engaging.
Closing with their No. 1 hit “Lightning Crashes,” Live was as lively as ever and ending up being a major highlight among the over 500 performances during this year’s Musikfest, which will continue into this weekend.
Live setlist, Aug. 7, 2017, Musikfest, SteelStacks, Bethlehem:
All Over You
Operation Spirit (The Tyranny of Tradition)
Pain Lies on the Riverside
The Dolphin’s Cry
Selling the Drama
I Walk the Line (Johnny Cash cover)
The Beauty of Gray
Turn My Head
Run to the Water
I Am the Highway (Audioslave cover)
by Keith Perks
Keith is an artist, photographer, and writer. He loves diners, dive bars, Southern culture, anything Irish, and vintage America. He knows Cytoxan kicks in after about eight hours and he once helped save a green pig.