Posted in Contests | music on August 22, 2007

Sorry for the late day post. I didn't make it to Bowery Ballroom last night (was at Jose Gonzalez instead), but here's a backstage shot someone sent me....

New Pornographers @ Bowery Ballroom, NYC - Aug 22, 2007
New Pornographers @ Bowery Ballroom

Neko's antics were really amusing. It was like watching Marsha Brady play Juliet. Maybe Bowery told her it was a solo show... She was disturbed there was a band there with her, and they were definitely disturbed she was there. Blaming it on the sound guy is pretty lame, a pro handles these things without sabotaging the show but Neko seemed to having a very rough night. [anonymous]
Tickets are still on sale for A.C. Newman's next live performance in NYC - The Revenge of the Book Eaters show on Sunday that Britt Daniel and some comedians are also playing. AND it was just announced (right here actually) that Kevin drew and members of Broken Social Scene will be performing too, AND I have a pair of tickets to give away. Instructions below.....

To win a pair of tix to the Revenge of the Book Eaters (charity) show, e-mail BVCONTESTS@HOTMAIL.COM (subject: cheap bastard 826NYC), and tell me the last show you saw, and your first and last name in case you win. One winner will be picked at random and notified.



Comments (27)

Neko was annoyed, but hardly was "sabotaging the show." I stood right in front of her and her earpiece kept flubbing out...either giving her nothing or something so loud that I could hear the feedback coming from it as she ripped it out of her ear. She didn't sing her parts in the earlier songs cause when she tried she was wayyyy off. Rough start, tho it seemed fixed midway through. Or at least she got used to the circumstances. The whole band was very lighthearted and bantery. No drama, no 'tude. Fun show all around.

Posted by Jeff | August 22, 2007 5:58 PM

^^^ wot Jeff said. And when Neko finally let it loose - it was worth the wait.

Wow, Book Eaters was good enough when originally announced - now BSS joins the fun. Should be a great night.

Posted by drewo | August 22, 2007 6:07 PM

I completely agree with anonymous. The show was incredibly tense and awkward. There was all sorts of non-verbal conflict going on and too many weak attempts to lighten the mood by talking a lot of garbage in between songs. I left at the encore- I was pissed off.

Posted by cuz | August 22, 2007 6:09 PM

i was right in front of neko as well, so pissed at bowery for the 1st half as it seemed no one was paying attention to the problem. neko is an integral part, and they should have just waited 5 minutes to fix it rather than have her stand there and look pissed off.

it ended up being a fabulous show though - the 2nd half is one of hte best i've ever seen them. played for about 110 minutes total with about 30 minutes of banter. all in all, good times. missed dan though!

I was sick of America and her screaming decay

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 6:13 PM

They're really good, and the music is solid, but they're really kind of boring. I actually liked that Neko was all bitchy because it at least held my interest. It was funny watching the chick on the right have to keep looking at Neko out of the corner of her eye to see if Neko was even going to sing, and then when she inevitably didn't, jump in.

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 6:15 PM

Did vampire weekend play at some point?

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 6:17 PM

vampire opened and killed. neko looked miserable and didn't sing her parts. kinda diva-ish. newman is the man. promoting the spoon album at target was hysterical.

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 6:21 PM

I gotta take a leak so bad I can taste it.

Posted by MusicSnobbery | August 22, 2007 6:26 PM

Maybe Britt will have to point out to AC at the Beacon on Sunday that Spoon's GaX5 is $10.99 at Target, and the NPs Challengers is $9.99 (and Feist is $7.99). Sheesh!

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 6:33 PM

there was definately a problem with Neko's in-ear monitors... but that wasn't exactly clear at first... because Neko wasn't explaing the problem to the sound crew... just pointing to things and giving the up/down finger motion DOES NOT HELP... the monitor engineer cannot help her unless NEKO tells them what she needs... instead she would make a few random gestures and then just say "it's fine"... and try to soldier thru the next song... which did not work because she couldn't hear herself... after about 3 songs, the bowery crew came out to the stage and took her in-ear transmitter away from her and took a look at it... they brought it back for the next song and guess what... it was now working!... so the whole problem was actually with her transmitter (user error)... but she didn't even thank the bowery crew for fixing it!

Posted by J-Roc | August 22, 2007 7:23 PM

I gotta say -- (I think I was standing right next to you Jeff) -- that I was really looking forward to seeing/hearing Neko Case for the first time, and her behavior was pretty lame. There were 10 people up there performing, and she definitely had a chip on her shoulder throughout which was affecting everyone's dynamic. Once she started singing for real, though, it was all worth it. Her voice is amazing.

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 7:58 PM

the new porn's are one of the lamest and most boring acts live. i can deal with the fact that they found out how to write one good type of song and they variate on it for an album every couple of years... but listening to them live (mind you, i saw them only once and it was for free on july 4) is just a trudge through mediocrity. if i ever have to listen to a.c. newman try to be funny again in my life, i might assassinate him.

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 8:13 PM

just to chime in for Neko here, I was also standing pretty much in front of her, and she DID thank the crew every time they fixed it or tried to. I would note that they took away her transmitter and brought it back and it did NOT work, and only after the second time that they brought her a new one did it work. So, while I can't dispute that she was a little dramatic, I think ungrateful is going too far... I don't know, I enjoyed the show once she got going.

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 9:31 PM

The last person said it right - J-Roc is an idiot and obviously a propagander for bowery. it wasn't fixed until about halfway through the show, first time not fixed, she was thankful and she made it clear she needed help. She was a bit of a drama queen, however. But don't lie J-Roc, we were all there

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 9:49 PM

Neko needs a Culkin.

Posted by Anonymous | August 22, 2007 10:15 PM

Hey Brooklyn Vegan commenters - just a reminder. As I explained here, ( ) most national touring bands have their own FOH Sound Engineer, as well as on-stage techs and crew. I wasn't at the Pornos show, but I can be pretty confident that any technical problems during the night should have been, and ultimately were solved by the New Pornographers crew, and were not the responsibility of the Bowery Ballroom staff. Don't blame the Bowery if you don't know - it sounds trivial but little stuff like this is what gives good venues a bad reputation.

Posted by NYC Live Sound Engineer | August 23, 2007 1:15 AM

But this show was not part of a New Pornographers tour. It was announced only last week, and was not preceded nor will it be followed by any other shows. So it's questionable whether the band had any of their own sound people with them.

Posted by Anonymous | August 23, 2007 1:42 AM

maybe a dingo ate her monitors.

Posted by anon | August 23, 2007 2:24 AM

Anon 9:31pm is right on. And plus, would you really want to sound like shit if you were performing for people? I think she had every right to be annoyed, they couldn't fix the problem. If she wasn't there, people would have been complaining anyway. What, no Neko?! Everyone was so concerned if she or Dan were going to be there they obviously know what integral parts they are to the band. So why shouldn't things be working? You want them to sound their best. So she got pissed, so what? I'm sure all of you would have been cool as cukes if that happened to you..

Posted by A | August 23, 2007 8:56 AM

one of the least charismatic and dynamic shows I have ever seen. The band sounded fine (in spite of sound problems) but they lacked any presence at all. Brutal.

Posted by Anonymous | August 23, 2007 9:34 AM

I had tickets for these guys during the last tour, and due to a mixup, only caught the last 5 songs. They were so boring that I was secretly happy I missed most of the show. Fine studio band, nothing more, but fuck what a dull live band. I'll gladly take Neko solo any day of the week.

Posted by Tom | August 23, 2007 10:21 AM

i arrived the bowery without a ticket and was able to get in. unfortunately, it was 21 and over show, and i'm 20. i really hate them.

Posted by yoav | August 23, 2007 10:24 AM

It was probably just a dead battery in the ear pack.

Posted by Ahole | August 23, 2007 11:29 AM

that was definitely the house mixer. and its not a FOH mixer. its a monitor mixer. 2 very separate gigs.

Posted by Anonymous | August 23, 2007 12:06 PM

I've got two extra tickets in hand for the Beacon 826NYC show on Sunday -- 2nd row, just looking for face value (~$60 each). email me at if interested. Can deliver to you....

Posted by Anonymous | August 23, 2007 12:43 PM

here's the scoop. The NPs had their own soundguy, who handles the sound in the house. He's a friend of mine and was incredibly frustrated that he wasn't in a position to help Neko on stage. The problem with the belt pack for the in-ear monitoring turned out to be a stereo/mono switch on the side that is unfortunately very easy to accidentally snag on clothes etc. and not that easy to see. The monitor techs were not very familiar with that unit, since it was brought in by the band.
It was finally correctly diagnosed at about the halfway point, at which time the show took an obvious turn for the better.
As for wether or not they're boring live...... I saw them at webster hall a couple of years back and they were one of the best shows i've seen.
It's hard to imagine, but maybe they were kinda nervous? I mean... it was clear they weren't sure how to make some of the new stuff come across live yet.... with the possible exception of "Go Places" and "my rights"

Posted by A. Nonymous | August 24, 2007 1:07 PM

thanks to a.nonymous!

yes, the problem was the belt pack. also some issues with a reverb unit which conveniently enough died right at showtime and threw crew and neko for a loop. no fault of the bowery staff or new pornographers FOH guy or musicians themselves. newsflash to all in the peanut gallery: sometimes shit just happens.

neko and co. were gracious throughout, difficult situation but once problem was resolved all was good.

Posted by | August 27, 2007 12:32 AM

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