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Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band Fiercely Dazzles New York City's Bowery Ballroom, Releases New Album
  by: SteveKane - Broomall, PA
started: 09/19/13 8:27 am | updated: 09/19/13 8:27 am
It was a gorgeous and sunny day in downtown Brooklyn on September 15th, perfect atmosphere for a legendary performance by some of the most influential artists of the coming age in pop culture. Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band was headlining The Bowery Ballroom, a very intimate setting for the group and by all means amazingly suitable. Yoko Ono released her latest album Take Me To The Land Of Hell on September 17th, and it may be her most straight forward and sonically superior album to date. Produced by Sean Lennon and his record label Chimera Music, it is incredibly exciting to see the dream team of musicians to rejuvenate such miraculous creativity and art.

Parishioner of peace and love, Yoko Ono has impressively spent nearly an entire career dedicated to world care and contribution with no signs of slowing down. Internationally known for her marriage with one of Earth's most important musicians, John Lennon, together they served as icons for a world to strive for. War is over, if you want it. Bed peace, Hair peace. Give peace a chance. These sayings are intrinsic and a critical part of the collective sub-consciousness of today's society, all started by John and Yoko in the revolutionary era of the late 1960's into the coming technological age of the late 1970's. A great realization comes upon us this past weekend, these sentiments are as strong as they ever were and now is the time to help act upon them.

The time was right to open the doors for the audience at around 7pm and the anticipating line of people made their way into the lounge area of The Bowery Ballroom. Each audience member were handed an 'OnoChord', a very innovative keychain LED light signifying peace and love. The new album Take Me To The Land Of Hell was available for purchase and it was beautiful sight to see. About an hour later the main room's doors were let open and the audience made their way to the front of the stage. Opening the show were various films from Yoko Ono's vast art career. Starting off was Ono's remarkably striking '365 Bottoms' featuring the bare behinds of dozens of people walking in the same motion, definitely easing up the crowd to great fun humor. Other films shown were the avant-garde 'Fly', showcasing a laying down Yoko with a fly creeping and crawling over her body with accompanying classic squeals and screams traditional of Ono. An emotional and riveting moment of the opening segment was a showing of John and Yoko reading pieces from her book of poetry entitled, Grapefruit over the audio of Lennon's "Imagine." The final film shown before the band took the stage was a delightful short entitled "The Secret Of My Long Life" with Yoko Ono silently dancing in place with great emotion and vitality.

At around 8pm the band made their way to the stage. Yoko Ono, at 80 years is of full presence and vigor. The remaining seven members of the band, including Sean Lennon starting on bass, filled the stage as a complete wall of sound with heavy groove. The set started with the first track from Take Me To The Land Of Hell entitled "Moonbeams." Ono swayed and frolicked about the stage in a swooning fashion with enchantment. The Plastic Ono Band was complete with a trumpet player, keyboardist, two guitars, bass, drums and Yoko Ono. Jumping right into the next track, "Cheshire Cat," Sean Lennon provided guitar licks strong enough to satisfy any Parliament Funkadelic fan. The song proves to be a great example of the state of raw and real rock music. Yoko's legendary, traditional and innate howling and squealing had the crowd in a trance as each song transitioned to the next.

In between songs Yoko Ono reminisced about writing songs, including a colorful moment where John Lennon presented a 14+ minute song to producers during a time songs were written less than 3 minutes. Witnessing the Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band live makes one realize just how influential her sound and presentation is with contemporary artists, from the early 80s with The B-52s and even up and coming acts like the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. With a ferocity and precise energetic dynamic, Yoko and her 'orchestra', as she mentioned the band, induced the audience to fantastic dancing. The intimacy of The Bowery Ballroom provided a stellar setting for the night, with an aura of excitement throughout the packed room.

Sean Lennon proved to be incredibly prolific, switching between instruments and singing melodic vocals. A pinnacle point during the show was an emotional collaboration with Yoko Ono singing while son Sean Lennon played solemn and ingenious piano with great precision during a rendition of "Higa Noboru." One can only imagine the chemistry between the two on stage. The talented band provided infectious rhythm and energy for the entire set. Later joining the team was guitarist Earl Slick a musician who most notability worked on Double Fantasy. Before closing the set, all went quiet and Yoko presented the crowd with very kind words. Each member of the audience shined their 'OnoChord' as a light garden while Yoko Ono graced the crowd with "I love you."

The future is now, Yoko Ono Plastic Ono Band is as strong as ever. With their latest US gig, the band radiated in joyful passion. Their latest record released on September 17th entitled Take Me To The Land Of Hell is a phenomenal, promising and strong display of songs crafted and recorded by Sean Lennon's own record label Chimera Music. Musical guests appear throughout the album including Lenny Kravitz, the tUnE-yArDs, Ad-rock and Mike D of Beastie Boys, and even Philadelphia's own Questlove of The Roots. All in all, the Plastic Ono Band is alive and prosperous. In its strongest form to date, there is no sign of 'plastic' artificiality with the genuine, authentic and outstanding new album. One of the greatest fierce leaders of our time toward human spiritual growth, Yoko Ono, has returned and with much beautiful celebration.

Cheshire Cat
Waiting For The D Train
Between My Head And The Sky
Will I
There's No Goodbye Between Us
Walking On Thin Ice
Higa Noboru
It's Been Very Hard
Don't Worry Kyoko (Mummy's Only Looking for Her Hand in the Snow)

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