Five ideas: Blondie and Trash at the Pearl (July 8).

1. Although the heights of their popularity took place about Twenty Years apart, Blondie and Trash proved to be a surprisingly smart co-headlining pair. The Pearl was loaded for Garbage’s 70-minute set and stayed so for Blondie’s a little longer closing set, with similarly strong crowd action for both bands. Although they achieved success in different ages, the 2 acts have plenty in common, both mixing rock music with dance-friendly noises, led by charming female singers with unique senses of style.

2. Garbage singer Shirley Manson had the more energetic and engaging stage presence, performing in a sparkly, sequined pink-gold gown that made her appear like a punk-rock prom queen, writhing on the phase while delivering traditional angst anthems “Silly Girl” and “Just Pleased When It Rains.” To be fair, Blondie vocalist Debbie Harry is 72, so it’s not a surprise that she’s a little slower, but her vocals were irregular and her phase banter was rambling, although her fashion sense (consisting of a cape with the words “Stop f * cking the world”) was still striking.

3. Both bands provided musically, with Trash’s Steve Marker and Duke Erikson switching nimbly between guitars and keyboards throughout the band’s set, and initial Blondie members Harry, Chris Stein and Clem Burke enhanced by a strong trio of more recent recruits. Burke stays a powerhouse drummer, and a program highlight featured classic performance video of him as he pounded through a drum-solo outro on new tune “Enjoyable.”

4. With set times much shorter than typical headlining slots, both bands well balanced hits with newer songs and deep cuts, making the most of the chance of reaching casual fans who might have been in presence to capture the other group. Garbage opened with new single “No Horses” and played 3 songs from last year’s Strange Little Birds, while Blondie played 5 songs from new album Pollinator together with classics like “Rapture” and “Heart of Glass.”

5. Although Manson and Harry have actually been buddies for several years (Manson inducted Blondie into the Rock-and-roll Hall of Popularity in 2006) and triggered the concept for the joint tour, there were no onstage partnerships between the 2 ladies or their bandmates. This was just the 3rd stop on the trip, however, so maybe the two groups can navigate to a team-up eventually. It makes an unexpected amount of sense.

Trash setlist:

“No Horses”


“# 1 Crush”


“I Think I’m Paranoid”

“Cherry Lips (Go Baby Go!)”



“Cup of Coffee”

“Even Though Our Love Is Doomed”

“The World Is Inadequate”

“Dumb Woman”

“Only Happy When It Rains”

“Press It”


Blondie setlist:

“One Way or Another”

“Holding on the Telephone”


“Call Me”

“My Beast”

“In the Flesh”


“Rainy Day Women # 12 & & 35”


“Very long time”


“Too Much”

“Heart of Glass”


“Union City Blue”


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