Ben Folds and CAKE bring tour to Milwaukee’s BMO Harris Pavilion

Ben Folds and CAKE bring tour to Milwaukee’s BMO Harris Pavilion

Review + Photos by Mike McCawley

August 23, 2018 | BMO Harris Pavilion, Milwaukee, WI – 

The dream of the 90s was alive at the lakefront on Thursday night when college-alt-rock stalwarts Ben Folds and CAKE brought their tour to Milwaukee’s BMO Harris Pavilion.

Folds and CAKE each did about 75 minutes of their best known material. Folds hammered his grand piano with familiar solo and Ben Folds Five songs such as “Brick,” “Zak and Sara” and “The Luckiest”, the latter of which caused a break out of romantic slow-dancing in the audience as many people seemed to be re-living their wedding’s first dance moment with that song. Folds rarely left his piano but did come out to the front of the stage to direct a sing-a-long with the audience providing harmonies for his closing song “Not the Same” from his Rockin’ the Suburbs album.

While Folds’ music was often slower and introspective, CAKE brought the tempo up a bit with many of their classics such as “Stickshifts & Safetybelts,” “Opera Singer,” and “Meanwhile Rick James” with band leader John McCrea using his arms and hands to punctuate each line of his poetic talk-singing, while trumpeter Vince DiFiore filled in the space between with his familiar horn blowing.

A highlight of the night was a small sapling tree that CAKE had on stage for the duration of their show, which they then gave away to an audience member that promised to plant and care for the tree. They do this at pretty much every show now and their website has a map of the “CAKE Forest” showing where all of their trees have been planted.

Boston three-piece Tall Heights opened the show and also acted as Ben Folds’ backing band once their set was done.

BEN FOLDS SETLIST:

Annie Waits
Battle of Who Could Care Less (Ben Folds Five song)
Milwaukee
Levi Johnston’s Blues
So There
Brick (Ben Folds Five song)
You Don’t Know Me
Jesusland
Still Fighting It
Do It Anyway (Ben Folds Five song)
Landed
The Luckiest
Zak and Sara
Rockin’ the Suburbs

ben folds

ben folds

ben folds

CAKE FOLDS SETLIST:

Sad Songs and Waltzes (Willie Nelson cover)
Opera Singer
Long Time
Sinking Ship
Perhaps, Perhaps, Perhaps (Osvaldo Farrés cover)
Meanwhile, Rick James…
Stickshifts and Safetybelts
Mexico
Shadow Stabbing
Walk on By
Ruby Sees All
Guitar
Sick of You
Never There

Encore:
The Distance

cake

cake

cake


For more information on Ben Folds, please visit:

Official website: http://www.benfolds.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BenFolds/

For more information on CAKE, please visit:

Official website: https://www.cakemusic.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cakemusic/

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