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Interpol brought ‘Bright Lights’ to Forest Hills w/Deerhunter & Battles (pics)

Turn on the Bright Lights is is an extremely solid record. This may be an obvious thing to say for a record that a band is playing big outdoor arenas in celebration of its fifteenth anniversary, and is generally regarded as a classic of the early-’00s NYC indie explosion, but I hadn’t listened to Interpol‘s debut front-to-back in a long time. I also didn’t do a refresher to prep for Saturday’s show at Queen’s Forest Hills Stadium, but I definitely had a few “oh yeah, this song’s great too” moments, especially on the album’s second half, with songs like “Leif Erickson” and “Hands Away.” It’s nice to be reacquainted with old friends.

Playing against a big white screen that, initially, was drenched in the crimson of Turn On the Bright Lights’ cover art and kept visuals to color washes and patterns, Interpol didn’t do much in the way of remember-when-ing, just delivering all those still-great-sounding songs, still looking good in suits, and still playing really well. (Sam Fogarino, in particular, remains a heavy hitter behind the kit.) They finished the main set with “Specialist,” from their three-song EP of the same year as TOTBL, then came back for an extended encore of cuts from their other albums, including “Not Even Jail,” “Slow Hands,” “Lights” and finishing with El Pintor‘s “All the Rage Back Home.” Due to Forest Hills’ neighborhood curfew, they didn’t get to “The Heinrich Maneuver” and “Evil” which were on the setlist. (They got to play longer at Friday night’s warm up show at Bowery.) But with absolutely perfect weather, and Forest Hills being an extremely pleasant place to see a show, this was a great way to spend a Saturday night.

It was a pretty stacked night of music. A lot of fans were clearly psyched for Deerhunter‘s set, and Bradford Cox was definitely excited to be playing it, chatty and in a great mood. He wished John Coltrane a happy 91st birthday, dedicated “Take Care” to Sheryl Lee and Grace Zabriskie (aka Laura Palmer and Sarah Palmer on Twin Peaks), and dedicated “Desire Lines” to it’s writer, Lockett Pundt. That song may have gotten the most cheers of the set.

Battles opened the night who I missed but you can check out pictures of their set, and the whole evening, in the gallery above. Setlists from Interpol and Deerhunter are below.

Interpol do Turn on the Bright Lights in Los Angeles next weekend, and you can see Deerhunter drummer Moses Archuleta, as Moon Diagrams, open for Gang Gang Dance tonight at Baby’s All Right.

SETLIST: Interpol @ Forest Hills Stadium 9/23/2017
Untitled
Obstacle 1
NYC
PDA
Say Hello to the Angels
Hands Away
Obstacle 2
Stella Was a Diver and She Was Always Down
Roland
The New
Leif Erikson
Specialist

Encore:
Not Even Jail
Slow Hands
Lights
All the Rage Back Home

SETLIST: Deerhunter @ Forest Hills Stadium 9/23/2017
Cover Me (Slowly)
Agoraphobia
Rainwater Cassette Exchange
Revival
Helicopter
T.H.M.
Living My Life
Take Care
Desire Lines
Snakeskin

photos by Amanda Hatfield

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