EDITOR’S NOTE: This post was originally started last Sunday, but I wasn’t able to finish it until now. Enjoy!
I know I absolutely have to write about the shows I saw on Friday today or else I will never get around to writing about them at all. In a nutshell, the shows were great. It was a wonderful night for pretty music.
I started off by hitting the 8pm show of Sondre Lerche and Paul Brill. Paul Brill wasn’t really my cup of tea, so I’m just going to move on and speak about Sondre. I had just seen Sondre the night before at a performance at the Astralwerks offices, but that gig was very casual, so I was excited to see Sondre perform again–this time without people snacking and chatting a mere 6 yards away from the performance area.
The crowd was extremely attentive–almost to the point of making me uncomfortable. I’m used to being able to “woo” after great solos, but at Housing Works it was so quiet and solemn that it just wasn’t the right place or time to be getting rowdy during songs.
Sondre continued his tradition of adorable between song banter–this time commenting that he had just bought the electric guitar he was playing on that very day! And it was different than the electric guitar he mentioned just buying in Japan during the Astralwerks performance–dear lord, how many guitars does this man own?!
Sondre seemed appreciative of the well-mannered and respectful audience because he mixed things up by not only doing his cover version of Elvis Costello’s “Human Hands,” but also adding in a bit of “The Only Flame In Town” in the middle of the song. But after doing so, Sondre commented that he needed to work on his transitions because he felt that his Elvis medley was far from being smooth-sounding.
As he started strumming strong rock chords for the next song he said, “This is not ‘Summer of ’69’,” to which everyone laughed because the intro to “Sleep on Needles” does in fact sound a little bit like the begining of the famous Bryan Adams tune. I was a little disappointed, because I would have LOVED to have heard a cover version of “Summer of ’69”! No, really. I would have.
He finished the night with doing a brand new song called “Tragic Mirror.”
Everyone’s Rooting for You/ Across the Land/ Dead End Mystery/ The Curse of Being in Love/ Minor Detail/ Dead Passengers/ Days that Are Over/ Human Hands and The Only Flame in Town (Elvis Costello covers)/ Sleep on Needles/ You Know So Well/ (I Wanna) Call It Love/ Two Way Monologue. ENCORE: Tragic Mirror
By the time Sondre finished it was 10pm, so J. and I booked it all the way to R and R on the West side to catch The Boy Least Likely To. Luckily when we arrived around 10:20, the band still hadn’t gone on yet, so I went around to the side entrance and found a spot in the front near R and S. As we all waited for the black velvet (!?!) curtains to part and reveal the stage, we were subjected to *interesting* dance remixes of U2 and Kasabian.
When TBLLT came onstage the crowd went wild! It wasn’t until later when Cameron told me that TBLLT’s album The Best Party Ever got an 8.5 from Pitchfork that the crowd fanaticism really made sense. It also explained why so many people in the first two rows were wearing dark-framed glasses. I kid, I kid.
The music was upbeat, peppy twee pop–and what would a twee concert be without a complete with a cartoon backdrop hanging across the back of the stage area? The keyboardist munched on cupcakes, the audience blew bubbles, “Eye of the Tiger” was momentarily covered, and the drummer stopped to take pictures of the crowd with his 35mm camera (below). Seriously, if a troupe of rainbow-colored bunnies had come on stage and done a dance, I wouldn’t have batted an eyelash–it was that warm and fuzzy of a performance.
I believe TBLLT played through all of the songs off their album because when the crowd demanded an encore, they came back on stage and said that they’d have to play a song they’d already done at the begining of the set because they simply didn’t have any more tunes to play!
For more of my photos of The Boy Least Likely To, head over to my Flickr page.