First up were the Gin Blossoms. Their "New Miserable Experience" cd was one of my favorites. It contained the hits "Hey Jealousy," "Found Out About You," and "Alison Road" which they all performed. They sounded great. My only beef was that Robin Wilson kept trying over and over to get everyone to "get their hands in the air." OK. We get it. You rock. After their 40-minute set I checked the weather radar on my phone. A nice blob of red was heading our way. Great.
Sugar Ray was up next. I had low expectations since I had heard their album "Floored" from which their hit "Fly" came. A friend had bought it and we listened to it on a camping trip. I thought it was a huge piece of shit with the exception of "Fly." To my surprise they put on a great set. Lead singer Mark Mcgrath really knew how to work the crowd. You could tell that he was having a blast up there as well as loving performing in a zoo. He kept talking about the cute animals he saw that day (perhaps a furry?) and loved performing right in front of large koi pond which separated the stage from the audience. The highlight was a cover of the Violent Femme's "Blister in the Sun." The lowlight was his vocals which seemed a little weak especially when his band mate sang harmony. Overall, however it was darn good set. The red blob on the radar hit during the set, and we got rained on. Some people headed for the exit, but this is New Mexico. Rains don't last long. It was over after only 2 songs.
Finally Smash Mouth performed. They performed all of their hits including "All Star" and "Walkin' on the Sun." When they did the Monkee's "I'm a Believer" I knew it was from a movie. Duh! "Shrek!" I would have liked their set a whole lot more if they had a better person on the sound board. Ugh! The quality was horrible. Hey! Sound Guy! Hear that loud buzzing from the speakers? That's not supposed to be there! Since it was opening night I will give him a little slack, but they probably performed a lot better than what I heard.
So overall a great evening. It's nice being in a city this size where we can attract some big-name acts, even if they might be considered second tier to today's hot acts.