Showbox Memories - These Are My Favorite Concerts From The Showbox

What did I miss?

July 26, 2018
Gregr on stage at Showbox

by Mat Hayward


I, like everyone, was rocked yesterday by news that a developer wants to replace the historic Showbox and surrounding buildings with a zillion unit apartment building. Great, more places I can't afford to live in and less culture. What is happening to the identity of Seattle?

Vocal Seattlites immediately got busy trying to thwart the process. A petition formed receiving more than 25,000 signatures in less than 24 hours. "But why is it so important to protect the Showbox - why am I so upset about this" I pondered. It's a place that exemplifies duality. It can be the venue you go to see a band that's finally legitimized themselves by making it to the stage at The Showbox - a benchmark - or the place you saw the biggest underplay of your life - a stage-giant packing more atmosphere than planet Venus into a room too small - the resulting pressure may be literally how magic is made. This line of thinking started the gears turning in my head trying to remember my favorite few shows from almost a decade of attending events there.

My top Showbox Shows
Queens of the Stone Age - played the entire self-titled album
The Head and the Heart - a year into their initial success with all the lamps on stage looking cool
Mogwai was the loudest show I've ever seen here.
Young the Giant on 4/20 covering Nirvana with Manley and the woman I would eventually marry.
Band of Horses - returning to Seattle, their former home and being the perfect fit.
Baroness - when an opening band blows away the headliner.
Men in Blazers - it's not all big, loud music acts, sometimes the best soccer podcast on the planet does a live show!
Modest Mouse. nuff said.
FOO FIGHTERS! Yeah, seeing the Foo Fighters in that small of a space gave me jet lag - I'm not sure how, but my soul was simultaneously the fullest it had ever been and run ragged after three hours of energy turned up to 11.

Just for fun, here are some stinkers, too

Worst Showbox Shows
Arctic Monkeys played way back in 2009 and were terrible - perhaps one too many adult beverages!
Aqua Teen Hunger Force put on the most boring puppet show of ever.
Neurosis I love metal, but boy was their show a few years back BORING.

What shows did I miss that you loved?
Do you think the Showbox can actually be defeated?
Have you signed the petition?

A petition alone won't save the venue, but it's certainly a first step in lighting a fire under the people who represent us in the greater Seattle area. Good luck, Showbox and god speed, you.