moe. devoted their Halloween celebration on Saturday in Philadelphia to a Black Sabbath theme. The quintet went acoustic for a first set at The Fillmore Philly before pair of electric sets with all three containing Black Sabbath covers.
Each member took the stage in grim reaper costumes for the unplugged frame. Guitarist Chuck Garvey handled lead vocals on the bluegrass-tinged “Paranoid” performed in double time that opened. moe. previously played the Sabbath classic once on February 14, 2003 in Solana Beach, California. Al Schnier then fronted the original “Smoke” and the band’s lone “Sweet Leaf” cover outside of its debut on Halloween 2003. An acoustic “Okayalright” followed along with moe.’s first cover of “Changes.” Bassist Rob Derhak sang the latter as he did the set-closing “The Bones Of Lazarus,” making its first appearance since August 7, 2015 as per Phantasy Tour.
When moe. returned after setbreak, they were dressed as the members of Black Sabbath circa 1971. The band launched into their debut “Black Sabbath” and then tackled “Fairies Wear Boots” for the first time. “Fairies Wear Boots” gave way to moe. classic “McBain” before Derhak was showcased on a concise “Brent Black” that bled into the title track from 1973’s Sabbath Bloody Sabbath. Percussionist Jim Loughlin shared lead vocal duties on moe.’s premiere rendition of “Sabbath Bloody Sabbath” with Schnier. The Buffalo-bred rockers worked their own “Annihilation Blues” into Black Sabbath’s “The Wizard” to end the set. “The Wizard” was last played by moe. on January 10, 2015.
The quintet kicked off the evening’s third and final set with “War Pigs,” a Black Sabbath tune they previously played once on Halloween 1995. moe. extended “War Pigs” and plucked a riff from the middle of “Buster” to provide a spot-on segue into the fan-favorite. Garvey patiently built his solo to a crowd-pleasing climax as “Buster” was expanded beyond 15 minutes. The ensuing “Mob Rules” was a moe. debut as was the “Electric Funeral” that followed a standalone “Tailspin.”
A trip to “The Pit” came next. Then, moe. went heavy for their debut “Symptom Of The Universe.” moe.’s “Symptom” gave way to a version of live staple “Recreational Chemistry” that came in a hair under 19 minutes. The five-piece had one more Black Sabbath cover for fans in Philadelphia as they started their encore with their debut “Iron Man” cover with confetti flying and bat head biting and capped the night with “Captain America.”
Hear an audience recording of Saturday’s concert taped by T.J. Samulis below:
Paul Citone’s Photos
Setlist (via moe. Facebook)
Set One (Acoustic): Paranoid, Smoke, Sweet Leaf > Okayalright, Changes*, The Bones Of Lazarus
Set Two: Black Sabbath* > Fairies Wear Boots* > McBain, Brent Black > Sabbath Bloody Sabbath*, Annihilation Blues > The Wizard
Set Three: War Pigs > Buster, Mob Rules*, Tailspin, Electric Funeral* > The Pit, Symptom Of The Universe* > Recreational Chemistry
Encore: Iron Man*, Captain America
* – debut