My first full concert shoot since May was industrial stalwarts KMFDM at First Avenue. I’m glad I made it for all three of the openers though, because shooting KMFDM was pretty brutal and all my best shots from the night are of the openers. I’m chalking it up to being a bit out of practice, but KMFDM would have been a tough shoot even if I was totally on my game: there was no frontlight ever, and almost no place on the stage that wasn’t obstructed by either monitors or tall equipment stands. The above is representative of what ended up being the best strategy - zoom in tight for close shots and wait for a burst of backlight or strobe lighting to highlight someone’s face.
By far my favorite band to shoot of the night was Italy’s Army of the Universe, who featured an insanely expressive frontman and a guitarist who loved crouching into power stances and slinging his hair around. The light wasn’t great, but it didn’t matter.
I also got a couple shots I’m pretty fond of from openers 16 Volt, who used fog machines and strobes more liberally than any of the other bands:
But my favorite shot of the entire show was actually of the very first opener, Human Factors Lab. Like the other bands they didn’t have much if any frontlight, but their atmospheric lighting was really colorful at times and I took advantage of it in the second shot below. Also, when sparks fly, I take pictures. It’s pretty much a no-brainer.