We have a lot of music fans here, and there's a wide variety of musical taste, so I thought this could be an interesting topic. What are the most amazing and most horrific live acts--headliners or opening acts--you've had the fortune (or misfortune) to see in concert?
I guess I'm obliged to kick it off:
The Decemberists - First Avenue, Minneapolis, 2005. They kicked off the set with "The Tain." Yes, all 45-or-so minutes of it, and it practically blew the roof off the place. After that was out of the way, they proceeded to play for about two more hours, and they were absolutely at the top of their game, swapping instruments at will and thrilling the audience with a giant, cardboard whale maw.
The Burning Brides - Opening for A Perfect Circle, Colorado Springs, around 2004. About 95% of the opening acts I've ever seen really suck, but these guys got it right. They played a tight, high-energy set and got the crowd all crazy.
Muse - Denver, 2006. Probably the best show I've ever seen, and definitely the loudest. The studio albums don't even compare to how great these guys' live shows are . . . whenever Matthew Bellamy wasn't singing, he was just pulled out these impromptu guitar solos like it was nothing. Also, they had a killer light show that wasn't overbearing.
The Bravery - A certain MN college campus, 2005. Generic music and no stage presence. However, they did INXS' "Don't Change" as an encore (I know, right?), and the singer's voice totally cracked going for the high notes. I laughed for hours afterword!
The Mars Volta - Opening for A Perfect Circle, Denver, 2003. About one hour of solid feedback wash and indecipherable wailing. You could not pull a single melody out of it, make any sense of it, and there was no break for your ears at all. The singer thrashed around stage, shrieking like Geddy Lee about God-knows-what, and the guitarist basically played with his effects pedals the whole time instead of actually playing something. Oh, there were bongos, too, just to further annoy you.