Posted in music | pictures on January 25, 2011

photos by Dominick Mastrangelo

Decemberists

"It was pure geek chic last night at the Beacon Theatre, where The Decemberists played the first of a three-night engagement.

This indie folk-rock quintet from Portland, Ore., look like extras from "Revenge of the Nerds," but don't be fooled -- like their name, The Decemberists' music is wrapped and cool.

Live, the band's acoustic side blossoms, so they often sound like close kin to American music icons such as Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band and R.E.M.

Yet their brand of Americana has a youthful contemporary angst that is essential to their hipster appeal. During this two-hour show, the set spanned the band's 10-year career, but wisely leaned heaviest on the just-released CD, "The King is Dead." Songs from that record made the best case for why the group should be superstars." [NY Post]

To quote Dominick, "Wye Oak flat-out killed" last night at NYC's Beacon Theater, so get there early if you're going tonight (night two) or Wednesday (night three). Wye Oak go on at 8pm, but note: both remaining shows are sold out. More pictures and the Decemberists setlist from night one, below...

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Wye Oak

Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

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Decemberists

Decemberists

Decemberists

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Decemberists

Decemberists

The Decemberists Concert at Beacon Theatre, New York, NY, USA
Setlist on January 24, 2011

Down by the Water
Rox in the Box
Calamity Song
We Both Go Down Together
The Engine Driver
The Bagman's Gambit
The Soldiering Life
Los Angeles, I'm Yours
Rise to Me
January Hymn
July, July!
Yankee Bayonet (I Will Be Home By Then)
The Rake's Song
O Valencia!
This Is Why We Fight
Encore:
The Island: Come & See/The Landlord's Daughter/You'll Not Feel the Drowning
June Hymn

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Comments (37)

What a great show. Drummer for Wye Oak killed it doing the simultaneous keys and drums.

Only wish Decemberists had heeded the crowds requests and played Mariner's Revenge Song and When The War Came, but still they played a lot of good ones.

Did the blonde bari guitarist / violinist use to play violin for Nickel Creek?

Posted by the jim | January 25, 2011 10:56 AM

Both The Decemberists and Wye Oak were fantastic. So glad they went with Beacon instead of the usual Terminal 5 crap. Don't miss this rare chance to see these guys in one of the best venues in the city.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:03 AM

Glad to see Wye Oak was well-received. Such a great band.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:03 AM

Sara Watkins is the former Nickel Creek violinist. Not sure if you are talking about her or not.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:04 AM

Nice chandelier.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:18 AM

What time did the bands go on and end?

Posted by Do Shut Up | January 25, 2011 11:18 AM

I dunno, why don't you take your own name's advice?

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:21 AM

Wye Oak went on at 8pm sharp and Decemberists went on at 9pm or a few minutes after..show ended around 10:35-10:40

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:23 AM

Decemberists went on at 9:15 and ended at 10:35, with a tiny break.

I thought last nights show was a a very mellow affair. With 7 songs of the new album (which are played note for note, but still played well), it would have been nice to have a couple of additional upbeat songs to build up some enthusiasm from the crowd. Overall, it was a understated affair that lacked the energy of the last few times they were in NYC (RCMH, T-5 Lottery show, post-election show, etc).

BTW, WTF was up with people complaining in the Loge to security that people were standing up during a concert. That was the most ridiculous thing I have ever seen.

Posted by Bob_Roberts | January 25, 2011 11:32 AM

The show was a snoozer. The singer passive-agressively asked the crowd to stand up. People stood up for a bit then sat back down again. It was embarrassing to witness. 

Also. only one Hazards of Love song.

But pretty pine tree backdrop. 

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:34 AM

Wye Oak >>>> Decemberists

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:43 AM

ugh, he looks the way he sounds...

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:00 PM

For anyone used to them wearing costumes and going into the crowd with cut-out whales and generally engaging the audience, it would seem those days are gone. Now they just look and act like any accomplished band. Plus the Beacon is more formal and allows less room to engage. The security/ushers were swift in clearing people who tried to get close to the stage. The songs sounded good in the venue though.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:11 PM

the man's got a unique voice, it's a solid band... looking forward to the show tonight...

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:12 PM

"The security/ushers were swift in clearing people who tried to get close to the stage."

good

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:18 PM

"The security/ushers were swift in clearing people who tried to get close to the stage."

Because this is a seated venue, there shouldn't be any attempt to "get close to the stage." So I would hope the ushers are swift in clearing these people out.

If you want to get closer to the stage, try buying better seats. It's not fair for the people seated, trying to enjoy the show. Not every show has to be a club-like GA affair.

Posted by M | January 25, 2011 12:23 PM

wye oak is a great band get there early!

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:28 PM

12:18 and 12:23 discovered The Decemberists on NPR three weeks ago.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:28 PM

12:28, there have been and will be plenty of opportunities to see bands like The Decemberists at your favorite venue Terminal 5. Stick to those shows.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:32 PM

a majority of the orchestra level stood for nearly the entire set. was 11:34 even in the audience?

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:32 PM

Was a fairly tame show. However, it is tough to strike a clever balance/interaction with the band between crowd enthusiam during upbeat songs and deference/respect to the band (specifically, Colin) during the "ballads". Also, many of the songs sounded verbatim to the studio recordings. That is the sign of a quality musicianship. However, when the "studio sound" strayed, there were a few moments that really crackled. Specifically, The Bagman's Gambit, The Rake's Song, and The Island were searing hot! Wished they would have played Mariner's Revenge Song, but it looks like they might have moved on from that. That being said, realize this was the first show for The King Is Dead, and I am sure they were experimenting a bit with the setlist.

Posted by Steve | January 25, 2011 12:38 PM

I don't know why I have to defend myself to people like 12:28, or why it matters how long a fan has been listening to a band. But if you must know, I've been a fan of the Decemberists since the release of their second album... and I've been seeing them regularly ever since.

Personally, I've enjoyed them more in seated venues. But that's just me.

And I don't think I've ever listened to NPR, for what it's worth.

So am I able to call myself a "fan?" Or would I had to have been listening to them since their FIRST album?

Asshole.

Posted by M | January 25, 2011 12:40 PM

12:32 stick to venues like the Beacon where you can sit in the loge and bitch about people standing in front of you. oh the horror. it's a rock concert not the symphony.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:41 PM

12:23 no it doesn't have to be a GA affair, but stifling the crowd's enthusiasm seems a tad harsh, even if it is the Beacon. When Gogol Bordello played the Tibet Benefit at Carnegie Hall last year people ran down the aisles to the stage to take part in the set. The ushers were fine with it.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 12:50 PM

At the Interpol show at United Palace in November, no one stayed in their seats, they packed the aisles. No one seemed to care. Maybe Decemberists fans need to pull the stick out.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 1:20 PM

Stop referring to me as 12:23! I take the time to fill in the name field, even if it only is one letter, damnit!!!

BV needs to start having people register!

Posted by M | January 25, 2011 1:34 PM

it's the Beacon. You can go down the walls, but not the aisles. You can't stand in the Loge, because it's tough to see from say row F if row A stands, and the overhang doesn't help in the back, either.

Security there is uniform, they're pretty fair, and like RCMH, they respect the fact that people up front actually don't want that area a disaster. Beers, bathroom runs to any seated venue shouldn't be clogged by the self righteous GA types that thin they're in a GA venue.

ou can stand in the orch, and people expect that, for all shows from Allmans to indie, etc. It's far from uptight there, especially with smoke, drinks, etc. The refurb was a nice job, and it's a great venue, easily accessible to the subway, a few decent bars, and some good food.

Don't crap on the Beacon - I'd say it's Top 5 in NYC, period.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 1:39 PM

where's the merch table photo?

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 2:08 PM

Not the greatest setlist. I don't know why they would choose June Hymn as a closer. After a relatively mellow setlist, Island was great...I thought they should have played Mariners or Chimbley Sweep to close it out. I guess they're saving it for tonight and tomorrow. Also, the new violinist looked a bit out of it with some songs. Guess she hasn't gotten much practice yet...but she did a great job with Yankee Bayonet.

Posted by TheSloot | January 25, 2011 2:35 PM

This show was so pretty

Posted by julianna | January 25, 2011 3:34 PM

"BV needs to start having people register!"

STFU 12:23, anon comments are what make this site great.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 3:35 PM

While the encore of "The Island" was well appreciated. Why on earth did Funk not play the signature "wah-nah-wah-nah-wah-nah-wah-nah" lead distorted guitar part during the into, it was sorely missed. I thought the set list was strong, the choices from the back catalog were among my favorite tunes by them. However, it is inexplicable that they would not play "Don't Carry it All" from the new album. Also, the "Rake Song" was the best performance of the set, its a shame they are trying to distance themselves from the "Hazards of Love", would have loved to heard at least one more from that album. These omissions are all understandable since they are playing 3 nights, I am looking forward to tonight's and tomorrow's setlists.

Posted by Jay | January 25, 2011 6:15 PM

Other high points:
Funk's chiming 12 string on the chorus of "Calamity Song". The transition from "January Hymn" into "July, July". "The Bagman's Gambit", especially during the end freakout. And you had to love "We Both Go Down Together" and "The Engine Driver" being the first older songs they played. Good show and I am sure its only gonna get better as the tour progresses.

Posted by Jay | January 25, 2011 6:24 PM

Tonight's show was a blast. They really changed up the set which was a great surprise and even better news for those going again tomorrow. Yes, the crowd was older and no one in the Loge stood, but definitely a run show with the band opening up their personalities.

Posted by Jabroni | January 25, 2011 11:53 PM

amaaaaaaaaazing show tonight

wye oak were good but the decemberists blew it out of the water.

red right ankle
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4rnB8BTa2I


cant wait for tomorrow's show. it'll be hard to top tonights.

Posted by Anonymous | January 25, 2011 11:58 PM

I think I speak for everyone with good taste when I say that the Decemberists are fucking terrible

Posted by Anonymous | January 26, 2011 11:45 AM

11:45, the authority of good taste.

I bet that jacket you bought at the Gap four years ago still looks really hip!

Posted by Anonymous | January 26, 2011 11:59 AM

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