Minneapolis (CH): In a surprise press conference, lead singer Kevin Love announced that 2012 Timberwolves Band would be embarking on their North American tour weeks earlier than anticipated. The TWB has been practicing in secret for the last several weeks, with Love patiently waiting for his wall-punched hand to heal. Without a properly function metacarpal, Love has been unable to do his signature finger point, which he insists is vital to the band's sound.
In addition to Love, the TWB brought back Nikola Pekovic (bass drum) and JJ Barea (piccolo) to their ranks.
News of the band's return spread throughout the Twin Cities last night. Fans eagerly waited outside of Target Center, hoping to score tickets to the show. A deafening roar greeted the band as the starting lineup was announced. At long last, after several delays and various ailments, the Timberwolves Band was back on stage and ready to rock.
Adrenaline and whiskey carried the TWB through the first two sets, delighting everyone. Pekovic banged on his drum, Andrei Kirilenko wildly played his synthesizer, and Luke Ridnour calmly strummed his guitar, but it was Love more than anyone else that was bringing the house down. His falsetto was ringing through the rafters of Target Center. It validated the TWB fans' dreams of what the 2012/2013 tour would be like.
After a quick intermission, the band retook the stage. What had been a defined groove in the first two sets wavered a bit in the third. Missed notes began to appear, Kirilenko was no longer hitting his transitions, JJ rhythm was all over the place, and Pekovic's downbeat disappeared.
Love, who is known for his occasional diva-like behavior, began to get frustrated. His red-face transitioned to purple-face and he lashed out. He blamed the roadies and production crew for not giving him what he wanted. They weren't providing the support that he was accustomed to on previous tours. He pushed an awkward looking bystander over and yelled at the sound guy. He continued hitting his high notes, but failed to bring together the rest of the band into the cohesive unit that they had been earlier in the evening.
In the end, the fans and TWB were left disappointed. A show that started out with so much promise had ended as a mess. However, it was the first show of the tour with Love at the helm. The rest of the band had been playing together for several weeks, figuring out their sound on their own. It's possible that it may take a few shows for the TWB to figure out the best way of playing with their superstar. Maybe Kirilenko needs to cut out some solos, or Pekovic needs to demand at least one set that is exclusively bass drum, or JJ needs to provide a higher quality sound from his piccolo...
Or maybe we need to wait for a Unicorn with a tambourine to really know what this band is going to be. It's great having the lead singer back at the helm, but a band just isn't the same without all of it's members making sweet harmonies together.