The Strokes March Madness continues with this great concert listing from January 2002. Scan the list of names of the bands playing the Mercury Lounge and does one stick out? Who wereThe Shitty Beatles? On January 18, 2002 they were Julian Casablancas, Albert Hammond Jr., Nick Valensi, Fabrizio Moretti, and Nikolai Fraiture.
That’s right, the fab five played under the pseudonym at a “secret” gig at the Mercury Lounge.
Here’s a little trivia for y’all — “The Shitty Beatles” is a fake band mentioned by Meatloaf‘s character Tiny in the 1992 movie of Wayne’s World.
From TheStrokes.com, video with “You’re So Right” off the new album, Angles:
It’s a bit more of a low-key song, with a few dashes of classic Strokes blazing guitar solo mid-way through. I’m kinda digging Julian’s sparse vocals and precision drumming by Fab. The song has a bit of a dark, menacing sound, with an unnerving tension present during the verses.
Here’s a keeper from the New York Post, June 29, 2003. In an article explaining why Friendster.com is so cool, it name-checks Albert Hammond Jr. as a member of the social network (sadly with only six friends).
Like many peeps who weren’t able to make it to The Strokes hometown return at the ultra-exclusive Tommy Hilfiger 25th Anniversary party at the Metropolitan Opera House night, I had a super-intense dream I was seeing the Strokes (in some dingy LA club for some reason).
But alas, the dream wasn’t true…but what did happen was that 1,200 invited guests (including folks like Neil Patrick Harris, the cast of Gossip Girl, and J. Lo, Mad Men‘s Christina Hendricks, according to NYMag.com and NYLON) were treated to an 8-song set on the terrace level of the venerable opera house.
I’ve scoured the internet, and these are the top things I think you’ll want to know that went down at the gig:
1. Strokes frontman Julian Casablancas, always a snazzy dresser, was wearing a black leather jacket, a (yellow?) baseball cap, and white sunglasses.
“I think Julian Casablancas only said they were doing this summer’s festival shows for the money to be provocative. I don’t think these guys do anything for the money.”
Almost a day later, not much information past the my initial posting has surfaced about the gig. By most accounts, the show was totally fantastic and made everyone feel like it was the early 2000s once again. “Venison” t-shirts modeled after the original Strokes logo were sold to concertgoers, antler signs and chants of “Venison” were encouraged by the crowd, and at the end of the show Julian declared, “You guys are the f-cking sh-t!”
Addict Music did reveal the one major bummer about the show — as soon as the show was over a pair of overzealous bouncers rushed the front of the crowd and actually took their fists to the faces of members of the crowd in an effort to keep people from jumping onto the stage, even TKO-ing a couple punters in the process. Ouch!
As y’all probably know, The Strokes marked their comeback to live performance in four years with a not-so-secret secret show at the tiny club Dingwalls in London, UK tonight, playing under the name “Venison”.
Some super lucky superfans have already put up videos of the performance. Join me in the full “Wish I Was There Experience”.
Setlist according to this Twitpic by T and NME:
NYC Cops/ The Modern Age/ Hard to Explain/ Reptilia/ Whatever Happened/ You Only Live Once/ Soma/ Vision of Division/ I Can’t Win/ Is This It/ Someday/ Red Light/ Last Nite/ Under Control/ 12:51/ Juicebox/ Heart in a Cage/ Take It or Leave It
Julian Casablancas sported a look not too dissimilar from the studded leather jacket + sunglasses indoors look that dominated his solo tour and Nick Valensi wore something that barely looked like a tank top over his sweaty body.
One of the things that made me laugh the hardest whilst reading the New York Magazine feature on the making of Lady Gaga was the fact that La Gaga was more or less discovered because circa 2006, a producer named Rob Fusari was “interested in locating a female singer to front a band like the Strokes.”
After hearing her sing, Fusari told NY Mag that he noticed “she didn’t have that kind of undersinging character voice of Julian Casblancas” and immediately “dropped the Strokes thing right away.”