They played their first public hometown gig in over five years and this was definitely a heroes welcome. The guys were in fine form and everyone (the crowd and the band) was pretty freaking pumped up after the show. Smiles all around.
I had an amazing time/night, and it truly felt like old times. Never have I thought I could recreate those feelings and memories of 2001-2003, but tonight certainly came close. I saw so many old friends, sang along to so many classic tunes, fantastic all the way around.
I want to thank YOU GUYS for making it such a fun show — so many of the faces I saw were of young folks — kids who weren’t old enough to even ride a two-wheeler when Is This It came out, but there you all were up in the front, smiling, so happy, and enthusiastic about seeing The Strokes. You kids are so awesome. You totally rock!
The birds are tweeting outside and the sun is coming up, so I’ll try to jot down some stuff before my eyes fall out of my head:
I’ll start with the end — The very last song, in typical Strokes fashion, was “Take It Or Leave It” — but this time singer Julian Casablancas took it upon himself to bring the music to the people — well, specifically to the people in the seated section stage left. Climbing up on the stage left speakers, and then grabbing onto the side railing, Julian positioned himself in the midst of the raised seated floor section, where upon everyone started grabbing on to him from behind.
At one point, Julian jumped down to the floor, and the barricade felt as if it were going to tip over — terrifying me because that’s where the handicapped folks were sitting. Luckily, Julian moved back up and further over into the crowd, bringing the rest of the song to the front section of the room, and a bit to stage right at the end, finally finishing on the stage.
You can check out the entire song below — excuse the sort of crazy Cloverfield-style look of the middle — I could never be a war correspondent with that kind of sloppy camera work, but the beginning is pretty awesome if I do say so myself:
VIDEO: “Take It Or Leave It” – The Strokes @ MSG – 4/1/11
The tone of the night was set when “mystery” guest Elvis Costello performed a 15-minute set as an April Fools’ joke on all of us. Julian had been tweeting about “accidentally” running into Elvis three times that week, so it was a semi-surprise to see the man himself get on stage and actually start singing. What a great way to start the show!
Is This It
Under Cover of Darkness
Hard to Explain
Juicebox (Julian jumps into the GA pit audience)
You’re So Right
You Only Live Once
New York City Cops
Taken For A Fool (with Elvis Costello)
Ask Me Anything
The Modern Age
I Can’t Win
Take It or Leave It (Julian sings in the audience)