Entries tagged with: Talking Heads
photos by Dana (distortion) Yavin, words by Andrew Sacher
Arcade Fire @ Barclays Center - 8/24/14
Arcade Fire completed the three-night Barclays Center run of their current tour last night (8/24). Like the first two, Dan Deacon and the reunited Unicorns opened, but this one was extra special because it also included an opening set from New York's legendary Television.
The Unicorns kicked things off early at 7:15 PM, and unfortunately the soon-to-be-filled venue was mostly empty for them, but this rare set (one of six dates they're playing this year) was a treat for those in attendance. They mostly stuck to material from their classic Who Will Cut Our Hair When We're Gone?, and despite Nick Diamonds and Alden Penner's more "serious" recent projects, they retained all the quirk from their Unicorns days for this show. Alden and Nick both ran around on stage, cracked jokes ("Some people have told us now that they've finally seen us they can die happy ... that is very accurate"), and seemed to be having a genuinely good time on stage playing those old songs. We certainly had a good time hearing them.
Television followed with an excellent set that included half of the classic Marquee Moon ("See No Evil," "Prove It," "Torn Curtain" and it's sprawling title track), but was more of a jammy psychedelic trip than a rehashing of old favorites. The band, whose lineup is 3/4 of the one that recorded Marquee Moon (Jimmy Rip in place of Richard Lloyd), are now almost 40 years past the release of that album and they don't perform all that frequently, but they were dead on last night. The interlocking guitar solos went on endlessly without dragging, and the rhythm section was locked in for all those jams. As improvisational as some of it sounded, parts like the ending of the instrumental break on "Marquee Moon" were exactly like the album. It was as powerful blasting from the stage at Barclays Center as it was the first time you heard it on record.
Immediately after Television's set, Dan Deacon got started on the small stage on the opposite end of the floor, hosting a huge dance competition on Barclays Center's ground floor which ended with the whole floor dancing. A second dance competition was then framed as a battle between Brooklyn DIY venue Death by Audio and NYC print-only show listings publication Showpaper. This was the second recent show we've attended that a now-big act playing to a lot of people in NYC gave props to Death by Audio from the stage (the last was Future Islands). Also spotted dancing in the crowd to Dan Deacon was fellow bald, bearded indie music maker Tim Harrington of Les Savy Fav (Dan thanked him at the end). Dan's set was both a fun/funny activity for the crowd and an entertaining precursor to what was to follow.
Arcade Fire then took the stage at 9:30 for a 2-hour set (encore included) which was all thrills. At least in the world of music blogs and music twitter, Arcade Fire have gotten more than a little criticism for the last year or so of their career, which has included an elongated album rollout, lots of costumes, cover songs, and other gimmicks. But last night's show was such a truly good time, you'd have to be bitterly cynical to have been there and felt otherwise. Yes, it is a huge spectacle built for the huge venues they now typically play (this was their third arena show of the weekend in Brooklyn, and all three were full), but they do it without falling into bombast.
One of Arcade Fire's first NYC shows was ten years ago at the tiny Mercury Lounge (October 2004 to be exact). Core members Win Butler, Régine Chassagne, Richard Reed Parry, William Butler, Jeremy Gara, Tim Kingsbury, and Sarah Neufeld were all on stage that night, and impressively they're all still there ten years later. This time around they're joined by multiple other musicians (including sax genius Colin Stetson who you can catch in a more intimate environment at Baby's All Right TONIGHT (8/25)), a few people in paper mache bobblehead masks, dancers, confetti, and an elaborate light show, but they make it all unmistakably their own. The Arcade Fire of 2004 may not have written the dance-heavy "Reflektor" or "Sprawl II," but when the Arcade Fire of 2014 plays them right next to "Rebellion (Lies)" and "No Cars Go," nothing sounds out of place. The setlist was heaviest on Reflektor and lightest on Neon Bible, but it mostly felt like a very well curated collection of the many sounds Arcade Fire have made over the years, each song flowing perfectly into the next.
You know by now that Arcade Fire have been doing location-specific covers on this whole tour, and with NY Dolls' David Johansen (as Buster Poindexter) joining them for a cover of "Hot Hot Hot" on Friday, followed by Marky Ramone joining for two Ramones songs on Saturday, and Television opening last night's show (not to mention Deborah Harry joining them at Coachella), it seemed like a pretty good bet that they'd keep the CBGB theme going for this final show. And they did. But Television, though their opening set fit the theme, did not end up being the guest. Win Butler, like Dan Deacon before him, did point out how amazing it was to play with Television though. In fact, Win said last night's show was the best lineup of bands they ever played with at one show.
Arcade Fire & David Byrne
The CBGB-themed cover ended up being Suicide's "Dream Baby Dream," after a fake-out of LCD Soundsystem's "All My Friends" playing through the PA as The Reflektors mimed the song from the smaller stage at the back of the floor. Nobody from Suicide joined them for this one, but they brought out Talking Head David Byrne (who was also on stage with Arcade Fire almost ten years ago) to sing guest vocals, complete with white face makeup on. It seemed like a good bet that David would be joining them when we heard he was spotted in the building, and we're pretty sure he was even out dancing in a mask to Dan Deacon. (There was a rumor they'd be covering Bruce Springsteen after someone got a hold of the setlist early, uploaded it to setlist.fm, and must have mistakenly not realized Bruce's recording of that song is in fact a Suicide cover.)
"Dream Baby Dream" segued into "Here Comes the Night Time," followed by "Normal Person" (which included Win singing "New York I love you, but you're bringing me down" over the intro, further teasing those of us who were hoping for a James Murphy cameo), and then the show ended with the longest-ever version of "Wake Up." Even after the song's huge ending and the crowd's applause, Win started singing the "whoa-oh, whoa-oh-oh-oh" part again as he and the band walked off stage, then the horn players joined back in, and the whole band proceeded to leave the stage in marching band fashion (the same way they had entered the venue 2 hours earlier) playing the song even once the PA was turned off until they fully exited the room.
Pictures of the third and final night are in this post (though unfortunately none of the openers this time). Saturday pictures HERE. Friday pictures HERE. More from Sunday, with a video of the Suicide cover and AF's setlist, below...
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Johnathan Demme's classic Talking Heads concert film Stop Making Sense, and the film has been making the rounds at various screenings around the country and was just released on Blu-Ray. The film will screen as part of Lincoln Center's Sound + Vision Festival at the Walter Reade Theater on August 1, to be followed by a Q&A with David Byrne himself. File this one under 'not to be missed.'
Tickets are sold out, but If you'd still like to go we have two pairs of tickets to the Lincoln Center screening to give away. ALSO one of those two winners will also be getting the new Blu-Ray of the film SIGNED BY ALL FOUR MEMBERS of the Talking Heads. Details on how to enter the contest, plus a few clips from Stop Making Sense, below...
by Bill Pearis
Lincoln Center's Sound + Vision film series is back for its second year, happening July 31 - August 6. The weeklong series kicks off on July 31 with a screening of shoegaze documentary Beautiful Noise that was funded by a Kickstarter campaign (trailer below). The series ends on August 6 with a screening of Pulp: a Film about Life, Death & Supermarkets. That screening features a Q&A with director Florian Habicht and a live performance by Dragons of Zynth. In between, there's a screening of Talking Heads' Stop Making Sense on 8/1 with a Q&A with David Byrne ;, as well as documentaries on Rodrigo y Gabriela, Brasslands, Japanese didgeridoo player GOMA (shot in 3-D), and more. Tickets for Sound + Vision go on sale Thursday (7/10) and the full schedule is below with more info about the films here.
The night after the Pulp documentary screens at Lincoln Center, it will be shown as part of Rooftop Films at Industry City in Sunset Park (8/7). Habicht will be there for a pre-screening Q&A as will Pulp frontman Jarvis Cocker which is probably worth the price of admission on its own. Tickets are on sale now.
Conceived by Cocker and directed by Habicht, Pulp: a Film about Life, Death & Supermarkets chronicles the iconic Britpop band's "final" hometown show at Sheffield's Motorpoint Arena in December 2012. (They played the Coachella cruise after.) It's as much about Sheffield as it is Pulp, interviewing fans and locals on the leadup to the concert. You don't have to be familiar with Pulp's music to enjoy this one, but it certainly helps like in scenes where a group of septuagenarians sing Pulp's 1997 single "Help the Aged." It's a terrifically entertaining film and its trailer is below.
by Bill Pearis
It's the 30th anniversary of Talking Heads' seminal concert film Stop Making Sense. The 1984 film, directed by Jonathan Demme, captured the band during their Speaking in Tongues tour over the course of three nights at Hollywood's Pantages Theater. Shot with long takes that really emphasize the performance, it's still a thrill to watch.
If you've never seen it, Stop Making Sense is getting its first ever digital release on July 15 for your downloading pleasure. It will also get a theatrical rerelease this summer. As mentioned, you can see it in NYC at BAM Rose Cinemas on June 4 at 7:30 PM which will be followed by a Q&A with Demme. It's part of the RadioLoveFest and tickets are on sale now.
You can also buy it on DVD and Bluray -- the 25th Anniversary Edition contains performances of "Cities" and "Big Business/I Zimbra" that aren't in the final cut of the film, plus a great audio commentary featuring all four members of Talking Heads and Demme. Still, it's great to see Byrne's Big Suit in a big theater.
All Stop Making Sense screening dates are listed, along with a couple clips from the film and its original trailer, below...
Andrew Bird at RIverside Church in 2012 (more by Dominick Mastrangelo)
Singer/songwriter/violin looper Andrew Bird is going on a tour this summer with his new band The Hands of Glory, "an old timey acoustic configuration featuring Tift Merritt, Alan Hampton, Bowl of Fire alumnus Kevin O'Donnell, and Eric Heywood on pedal steel." That tour hits NYC for a free show at Central Park Summerstage on July 8 with Here We Go Magic singer Luke Temple. That show starts at 7 PM. All dates are listed below.
Andrew Bird will play NYC sooner than that though for RadioLoveFest, "a vibrant cross-section of genres and formats from storytelling, to music, to conversation," which runs from June 4-8 at BAM. Andrew appears on June 6 at the BAM Harvey Theater. Details:
The two-time Peabody Award-winning Studio 360 with Kurt Andersen, from PRI and WNYC, is public radio's smart and surprising guide to what's happening in pop culture and the arts. Each week, Andersen, novelist, journalist, and co-founder of legendary Spy magazine, gets inside the creative mind, introducing listeners to the people who are creating and shaping our culture on movie sets, in galleries, and on the internet.Other highlights include a screening of Talking Heads film Stop Making Sense on June 5 in the BAM Rose Cinemas with a Q&A with director Jonathan Demme and WNYC's Brian Lehrer; NYC/WNYC's Ask Me Another show on June 6 at the BAM Howard Gilman Opera House with They Might Be Giants and house musician Jonathan Coulton; and WNYC"s Soundcheck on June 7 at BAM Harvey Theater with The Walkmen frontman (and now solo artist) Hamilton Leithauser.
At BAM, Andersen presents an evening of music and conversation featuring Andrew Bird, one of the most acclaimed and inventive songwriters in indie music, and Jennifer Egan, whose novel A Visit from the Goon Squad won the Pulitzer Prize.
Tickets for all RadioLoveFest shows are on sale now or will be on sale soon.
Full RadioLoveFest schedule, with the list of Andrew Bird tour dates, below...
[Craig] Leon moved to Manhattan in the early 1970s where he accepted an A&R position at Sire Records in New York under Gottehrer and his partner Seymour Stein. There he was responsible for the discovery and early development of the Ramones and Talking Heads amongst other artists. He produced the first Ramones album and also concentrated on licensing more adventurous European records which the majors were unwilling to release in the U.S. At Sire, Craig learned the skills necessary for the production, as well as manufacture of recorded music.Craig Leon, who (as the above bio states) has produced Ramones, Talking Heads, Richard Hell, Blondie, The Fall, Suicide and more, also put out music of his own, including 1981's and 1982's synth albums, Nommos and Visiting, respectively. Those albums are now both getting reissued as Anthology of Interplanetary Folk Music Vol. 1 on June 24 as part of RVNG Intl.'s archival series. (Nommos was reissued in the UK last year via Superior Viaduct.) If you're unfamiliar with Craig's work, preview the new reissue with the track "One Hundred Steps" below. Album artwork and tracklist below too.
After producing the 'Live at CBGBs' compilation for Atlantic Records, Craig joined Richard Gottehrer and Marty Thau to set up a production company called Instant Records. Projects included the early Blondie records, Richard Hell & The Voidoids and Suicide.
...He has written and performed on three albums of his own, including "Nommos" (a dance piece based on North African ethnic themes and electronic music, that was used by members of The Twyla Tharp dance troupe which was also used as the opening exhibit for the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art in 1981),and the full length score of the Kosh Dance Theatre piece, "Klub Anima", which deals with alternating classical and modern electronic forms.
Craig will be making the US debut of Nommos at RVNG's Moogfest showcase in Asheville, NC this April, and just after that he'll come to NYC for a show on April 30 at Le Poisson Rouge to perform it with the American Contemporary Music Ensemble. PAN's Bill Kouligas is also on the bill. Tickets will be on sale via LPR's site and the show flyer is below.
photos by Amanda Hatfield
David Byrne / Jherek Bischoff / Zola Jesus @ St. Ann's Warehouse - 1/8/14
Jherek Bischoff began his guest-filled two-night stand at St. Ann's Warehouse last night (1/8), and if you weren't sure what to expect, it turned out to be a pretty extravagant affair. He was joined by a number of guest vocalists, including David Byrne, Sondre Lerche, Zola Jesus (aka Nika Danilova), Mirah, in addition to unannounced (but not unexpected) singers Zac Pennington (of Parenthetical Girls) and Sam Mickens. His band, among others, also included Deerhoof's Greg Saunier, Jen Goma (of People Get Ready/A Sunny Day In Glasgow) and the Contemporaneous Ensemble, conducted by David Bloom.
The first set was songs off of Jherek's Composed album, and the second set was songs by the guest vocalists with arrangements by Jherek. One of Mirah's songs, "Gold Rush," was a new one, and one of Zola Jesus's, "Lawless," was new as well. For the encore, David Byrne came out to do Talking Heads' "And She Was," eventually joined by all the guests on stage together. Pictures of the show are in this post.
Jherek and co. do it again tonight (1/9), which is unfortunately sold out.
More pictures from night 1, along with the setlist, below...
"Recorded live at CBGB's in New York City on July 30, 1976. Talking Heads (still a trio at that time) and Television both played two sets that night - this recording is from the second Talking Heads set. This track was never released in any form." Listen below...
The tracklist for that movie's soundtrack was just revealed, and while there's not too much you don't already have if you're already into this stuff, it should make a great classic-punk 101 for anyone who's yet to have discovered these gems. The soundtrack will feature classic tunes from Talking Heads, The Stooges, Dead Boys, Richard Hell & the Voidoids, Television, Wayne County & the Electric Chairs, New York Dolls, The Velvet Underground, Johnny Thunder & the Heartbreakers, and more. Plus, there's some live tracks, demos, and alternate versions of songs from other beloved bands like Blondie, MC5, The Dictators and more. The soundtrack will be out on October 8 via Omnivore Records physically and Rhino digitally.
Check out the full tracklist and some videos below...
photos by Greg Cristman
David Byrne & St. Vincent @ Wellmont Theatre - 6/12/13
David Byrne & St. Vincent just kicked off another tour in support their 2012 collaborative album, Love This Giant, in the NYC-area at Wellmont Theatre on Wednesday (6/12). Like they did on their last tour, they played much of Love This Giant in addition to St. Vincent material ("Northern Lights," "Marrow," "Cruel," etc) and David Byrne/Talking Heads ("Burning Down the House," "Road to Nowhere," "This Must Be the Place," etc. Pictures, videos, and the setlist from that show are in this post.
More pictures, videos and the setlist from Wellmont Theatre below...
by Andrew Sacher
The members of UK dance duo Psychemagik, Danny McLewin and Tom Coveney, met six years ago at a music festival and after recording a track, "Valley of Paradise," the two decided they needed to make an album together. Psychemagik make the kind of disco synth-funk that we've heard from Daft Punk and Justice, and it's also the kind of thing that would feel at home on DFA Records. They've been spending the last few years dropping remixes left and right, including ones of Fleetwood Mac's "Dreams" and Talking Heads' "This Must Be The Place" -- two songs that you could already make a case for throwing on at a party, but Psychemagik's remixes seal the deal without making them sound like that shitty "Somebody That I Used to Know" remix that you keep hearing on the radio.
In December, Psychemagik released their first EP of original material, Lunar Escape, which consisted of three songs written and produced entirely by the duo without any samples, and the only outside help coming from string arranger Richard Chester on one of the tracks. This year, they're finally set to release that full length album they've been talking about. You can stream all three EP tracks, the Fleetwood Mac and Talking Heads remixes, and that early recording, "Valley of Paradise," below.
Psychemagik are set to make their way over to the USA in February to support the Lunar Escape EP with a five-week long DJ tour. That tour hits NYC for a FIXED party on March 2 at Glasslands. Tickets for that show are on sale now. It's a late show at the Brooklyn venue which happens after The Night Marchers play an earlier one the same night.
Song streams, a list of all dates, and the tour flyer below...
Tom Tom Club released their latest EP, Downtown Rockers, earlier this year and have just made a video for "Kissing Antonio" from that record. The clip was a collaborative effort from current students at Rhode Island School of Design, which, you may know, is where Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth met David Byrne and formed Talking Heads back in the mid-'70s. Nice to see them giving back. We've got the premiere of the video below.
If you'd like to catch Tom Tom Club in person, the band (who recently played Brooklyn Bowl) will open for Toots & the Maytals at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester on Friday (12/7) which doubles as a party for Toots' 70th birthday. Tickets are still available.
by Bill Pearis
Robert Mitchum in 'Night of the Hunter'
Newly-crowned Polaris Music Prize winner Feist will be in NYC next week to discuss Charles Laughton's classic 1955 film Night of the Hunter which will be part of The Modern School of Film's Film:Acoustic series. The screening and discussion, hosted by Robert Milazzo, happens Wednesday, October 10 at the Mark Miller Gallery (92 Orchard) and tickets are on sale now.
Feist will not be performing, just talking about one of the greatest (and most gorgeous-looking) thrillers in American cinema, and any chance to see it -- Laughton's only film as a writer/director -- on the big screen should be taken advantage of. For those who can't make it, it's also available on a great-looking Criterion Blu-Ray and DVD. Trailer for the film is below.
Also upcoming in MSF's Film:Acoustic series will be a screening of the Jonathan Demme-directed Talking Heads concert film Stop Making Sense at City Winery on October 17 with a post-show discussion with the band's rhythm section, Chris Frantz and Tina Weymouth (aka the Tom Tom Club, who are also in the film). David Byrne (who we can't get enough of lately), no real surprise, is not involved with this event (among other reasons, he's still on tour). Tickets are still available and the trailer is below.
David Byrne & St. Vincent @ Williamsburg Park
David Byrne and St. Vincent (aka Annie Clark) played their third of three NYC shows on their tour together in support of their collaborative album, Love This Giant, at Williamsburg Park last night (9/29). The setlist didn't change much from the Beacon Theatre shows (or the rest of the tour), kicking off with Love This Giant singles, "Who" and "Weekend in The Dust;" and including Talking Heads favorites like "This Must Be The Place (Naive Melody)," "Burning Down The House," and "Road To Nowhere;" St. Vincent favorites like "Cheerleader," "Cruel," "The Party," and others; plus some David Byrne solo cuts and more off of Love This Giant.
The two pop wizards were in their own distinct characters throughout the show, as they were backed by a choreographed eight-piece horn section. (Who, not to mention, added great layers to the newly-worked out versions of Talking Heads/David Byrne/St Vincent songs.) David and Annie were both in admiration of each other during the songs from their respective projects, and though it was David who had the hits and got the crowd going most wild, Annie brought her own flare as well with physical guitar freakouts worked into all of her songs. They also had a shared moment as they "fought" with their hands over a theremin.
Have you been keeping up with Kelly Pratt's (aka main member of Bright Moments and co-musical director/member of David Byrne & St. Vincent's horn section) tour diary of his time on the road with David and Annie?
More pictures, videos, and the setlist from last night's show are below...
David Byrne, Jherek Bischoff, Amanda Palmer @ MHOW - 6/27/12 (via DaynaR)
Amanda Palmer week continues in NYC with a semi-private art opening/show tonight (6/28). Last night was her big, sold out show at Music Hall of Williamsburg which ended in a huge way. David Byrne, who we know has been collaborating with Amanda and friends lately, joined her and her band during the encore to perform Talking Heads song "Burning Down the House." Watch bleow...
photos by Ryan Barkan
Tom Tom Club is forever fresh.That's a review from Tom Tom Club's appearance at The Echoplex on 10/10, which was six days before they ended their tour at Brooklyn Bowl. Pictures from the Brooklyn Bowl show, which was two days after a show at Santos Party House, are in this post. Ryan said the band helped him get excited about live music again, just in time for CMJ. Actually he couldn't stop raving about the show that included some Talking Heads songs in the setlist.
They've been playing for 30 years, but the husband-and-wife team of Weymouth and Frantz have barely aged at all. If anything, their nimble fingers and legs put all of the younger musicians that I've seen lately to shame. This incarnation of the Tom Tom Club is made further complete with old friends, like Victoria Clamp, who added a lovely extra layer of vocals, and Bruce Martin, who juggled keyboard lines and tropical percussion with ease.
Here, everything shines with the passage of time. Their older songs, like "The Man With the Four-Way Hips," sound like gritty photographs re-touched with the power of funk, while their newer songs, like "Punk Lolita," have nostalgia written right into them ("this is about going to CBGB's and seeing all the cute girls who would do anything for their guys"). -[The OC Weekly]
Tom Tom Club were touring in support of a new double-disc live album Genius of Live, out now. The Brooklyn Bowl show was with opener Command V. More pictures from that show, with both setlists and some video, below...
photos by Kurt Christensen
"Let's get one thing straight: Crowded House isn't a one-hit wonder. Sure, the Australian band is known by '80s music fans for its 1987 hit "Don't Dream It's Over" (and maybe the subsequent "Something So Strong"), but songwriter Neil Finn has actually guided different incarnations of the band through six full-length albums and earned critical acclaim for his solo albums and side projects." [NPR]You saw the setlist and the video from Wednesday night's show at Bowery Ballroom where David Byrne joined Crowded House and family (Sharon Finn and Liam Finn are both on the tour with Neil). Now here are the pics, along with video from the band's appearance on Jimmy Fallon (they really made the most of their trip here that included three shows at Bowery, and includes one at Wellmont Theatre tonight), below....
photos by Andrew St Clair
Crowded House completed their three-night run at Bowery Ballroom in NYC last night (7/21). It was also at the third show that David Byrne came out for the encore to join the band on two Talking Heads covers. We actually have pictures from that show too, but the pictures in this post are from the 2nd night, July 20th. Stay tuned for the ones from night three.
If you missed the show, there's one more NYC-area chance when Crowded House plays Wellmont Theater in NJ on Friday.
More of the night two pictures, video of the David Byrne part from last night, and all three setlists (including which songs Neil Finn's wife Sharon son Liam played on), below...
DOWNLOAD: Peter Gabriel - Flume (Bon Iver cover) (MP3)
Peter Gabriel's new record Scratch My Back is an all-cover, orchestra-backed collection of songs from Bowie's "Heroes" to Arcade Fire's "My Body Is a Cage." There's also a Bon Iver cover, a soft-spoken take on "Flume," which you can get above (full track list below). The record is described as "the first part of a series of song exchanges in which Peter and other leading artists reinterpret each others songs." It comes out in UK/Europe on February 15th (through EMI), in Canada on February 16th (through Universal Music) and in the US on March 2nd through Gabriel's own Real World Records.
Gabriel's album-supporting tour is short and sweet. He plays three European cities in March, then there are three North American stops - one night in L.A. and Montreal, and two nights at New York's Radio City Music Hall on May 2nd and 3rd. Tickets go on AmEx presale Sunday, Febraury 7th. General sale starts Tuesday, February 16th at 10am. For all the dates, he'll have a 54-piece orchestra in tow.
In other rock legends playing Radio City news, tickets go on general sale Friday for a show Ringo Starr and his All Star Band are playing at the venue in July.
Full Peter Gabriel tracklist w/ album art, an audio interview with Peter about the album, and tour dates, below...
photos by Chris La Putt, words by Andrew Frisicano
David Byrne opened the Celebrate Brooklyn 2009 Season with a free show at the Prospect Park bandshell last night (Monday, June 9th). The show continued Dave Byrne's year-long tour of material from his collaborations with Brian Eno. That show, on its trip around the world, visited NJ's Wellmont Theater on June 3rd, and Radio City Music Hall on February 27th and 28th. (Pics and reviews from those are linked.)
In Brooklyn, the above-capacity crowd wasn't deterred by threats of rain, which held off for the length of the two-hour set. David Byrne noted that he biked to the show; he wasn't the only one, as the 'bike valet' was packed (apparently Byrne rode home too). Those who did park in the bike valet were automatically entered to win a new bike which Byrne showed off from the stage before his set. Those that couldn't get through the door caught the open-air action from video screens aimed towards the back of the crowd.
Byrne's set opened, as it has all tour, with "Strange Overtones," the hypnotic single off the newest Eno/Byrne collaboration Everything That Happens Will Happen Today. The bandshell's reverberating walls were an incredibly jarring transition from punchy studio sound of the original -- as catchy as the tune is, it was kind of a strange, underwhelming start.
Things only went up from there, as the band's sound melded together and its accompanying dancers boosted the visuals. Their dance moves, which traded off with the members of the band, seemed to mimic Byrne's own jerky mannerisms, as well as the themes of the songs (eg. office chair props during the wage slave anthem "Life Is Long").
Overall, the energy on stage and in the crowd was high. "Once in a Lifetime," which came near the end of the set, sent the remaining seated show-goers to their feet. One older couple, who I'm sure had to be around when Byrne hit the scene in '75, went from joking with their granddaughter about the pot smell in the air to cutting a serious rug for the set's high-density end.
Byrne used his first encore to introduce the band and special guest, percussionist Steve Scales. The Talking Heads/Byrne regular, who played on both The Name of This Band is Talking Heads to My Life in a Bush of Ghosts for starters, joined the band for two songs that included "Take Me to the River." As the only one not dressed in all white, Scales bounded across the stage and hyped up the crowd. His unscripted enthusiasm, far from the composed moves of Byrne, added a nice party vibe to the choreographed set.
The band returned for a second two-song encore that included the non-Eno song "Burning Down the House", and finally, back for a third time, closed with an acoustic-led version of "Everything That Happens."
The rest of the pictures, the setlist, and remaining Byrne dates (of which there are more TBA) below...
photos by Tim Griffin
"Besides their dedication to their art, most [of those participating in Dark Was The Night are] successful -- but one senses that fame wasn't their primary engine for choosing a career in music. There was no hierarchy in this group -- everyone was treated as an equal, and participated with everyone else where they could. Many were already acquaintances or friends. Times have changed. No one was drunk, on drugs or two hours late for rehearsal. There was no "rock star" behavior. That could sound boring -- but such rebellious, clichéd behavior hasn't always guaranteed good music. When great music would surface from a personal or professional mess, it often seemed like a rare but happy accident, unlikely to be repeated." [David Byrne]That blurb comes from a blog post David Byrne wrote after the Dark Was the Night show at Radio City Music Hall.
Last night (6/3), David Byrne brought his Eno-show to the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, NJ. Now on a 2nd-leg of his 2009 U.S. tour (the first leg included two shows at Radio City) , Byrne will bring the show to Prospect Park in Brooklyn, NY on Monday June 8th. That 'Celebrate Brooklyn' show is FREE.
All tour dates, more pictures from the Wellmont show, and three videos Fader made of David Byrne giving a guided tour of his office, below...
David Byrne @ Radio City Music Hall (more by Chris La Putt)
Celebrate Brooklyn's opening night gala (and first concert of the season) will take place at the Prospect Park Bandshell on June 8th.
The Green Gala will be an exciting eco-friendly evening with a zero waste goal that launches other green initiatives including cycling and recycling efforts to reduce the Festival's environmental impact and to promote eco-friendly practices. All proceeds from the gala provide vital funds for Celebrate Brooklyn's free programming and will also support our green initiatives.Tickets for all of the above will cost you anywhere from $325 for a single ticket, to $10,000 for a Vice Chair Table. However, if you just want see the performance aka DAVID BYRNE, you can, for free (or pay the $3.00 suggested donation).
5:30 Cocktails & Dinner
8:00 Performance (reserved seats)
10:00 Dance Party
Most of the shows at the Brooklyn bandshell are free (like did I mention David Byrne on June 8th???), but a few are benefits (aka cost money) to help make the free ones happen. MGMT and Kuroma (sold out), Animal Collective (still on sale), and Jackson Browne (still on sale) all fit into the benefit category. Now you can also add Bonnie Rait and Taj Mahal to that list. They are on tour together and will play there on August 12th (on sale date TBA) (all dates below).
The full lineup of free shows happening at the bandshell in Prospect Park this summer will be announced in a few weeks. Until then we can try and figure them out. One possibility is King Sunny Ade on July 18th. Do you know any others? We're also keeping track of who is playing Central Park Summerstage.
The bandshell is not the only place events happen in Prospect Park though. The Long Meadow, with the addition of a stage, can and has also become a venue (usually for opera, orchestras, and other more-high-art events). According to the Daily News, there's now also a chance it will also become the location of Woodstock's planned NYC anniversary concert...
"It's big, it's convenient. There's public transportation - and Brooklyn's cool," said Lang, 64. "I'd love to do it. But it's been a very tough year."David Byrne's Brooklyn show comes five days after the not-free one he's playing at the Wellmont Theater in Montclair, NJ. You can also catch him playing a different set on May 3rd at Radio City Music Hall. You may have caught him earlier this year, also at Radio City, at one of his two Eno-shows he played there.
Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe confirmed the city is in talks with Lang about the event.
"New York City has a wonderful legacy of great free concerts," said Benepe, adding Prospect Park would be a great spot for such a concert.
"It's a park we have been pointing concert promoters to," said Benepe. "There's no space anywhere in Central Park as large as the the Long Meadow in Prospect Park."
Lang, who grew up in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, said he knows the clock is ticking and that to make the free daylong show work, he has to find the necessary $8 million to $10 million to pay for it by the end of the month.
If the money comes through, Lang is hoping to attract up to 150,000 people and feature a mix of Woodstock legends like Crosby, Stills and Nash, and Neil Young, as well as newer bands that fit the vibe, like Dave Matthews and Phish.
Bonnie Rait & Taj Mahal dates below...
photos by Chris La Putt
Byrne was greeted with a returning heroes welcome. I've never heard an ovation as deep and long as that following "Houses In Motion" - it seemed to begin in the back of the large hall and move forward till the room was one extended, hearty bravo that resonated for minutes, stunning even Mr. Byrne.David Byrne played the first of two nights in a row at Radio City Music Hall in NYC last night (2/27). The second is tonight (2/28). More pictures and last night's setlist, below...
Byrne was onstage at about 8:20 - no flashy intro, in fact, it seemed he needed to kill some time (allowing concertgoers a few extra minutes to get to their seats, a technical delay?) so he rambled on a bit (in somewhat disjointed Byrne style) explaining the musical makeup of the evening. It was interesting that in speaking about his earlier music, he pointedly made sure not to mention the name of his first band - Talking Heads.
The set smartly opened with the new "Strange Overtones" - immediately hooking the audience, and then proceeded with a blend of mostly old, some new, and a few semi-obscurities (from the lp "My Life In The Bush of Ghosts"). When the 3 dancers came onstage for "I Zimbra", the party really started. Tbe dancers, the choreography, the simple but standard stage uniforms - it was classic theatrical David Byrne - making sure that it was more than just a rock concert - it was a joyous stage show.
At the finale, Byrne, the band, the dancers and an additional chorus line of dozens all flooded the stage - and all wearing tutus! A chorus line of high kicks, followed by bows and waves to the audience, concluded a memorable evening of great musicianship and extraordinary showmanship." [drewo]
DB's backup singers in Austin (more by Kyle Dean Reinford)
David Byrne finally announced the much-anticipated 2009 leg of his current Eno-tour (see recent setlists here and here), and that includes, as many hypothesized, a show at Radio City Music Hall in NYC. The date is February 27th. No tickets yet. All dates below...
David Byrne @ the Paramount, Austin, TX (more by Kyle Dean Reinford)
Pardon the bulk mailing. I Can't Vote. I am an immigrant with a Green Card and, therefore, I am not eligible to vote in a federal election. ... On Election Day, I see my neighbors heading to the nearby elementary school to cast their ballots. The voting booth joint is a great leveler; the whole neighborhood - rich, poor, old, young, decrepit and spunky - they all turn out in one day.David Byrne played the Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank, NJ last night. Did you go? How was it? More tour dates HERE. Set list below. Still waiting for the NYC show announcement.
But most of you can vote. What can I say? The Republicans have made us less safe than before 9/11, bankrupted this economy, started an illegal war they can't - and don't intend to - finish, removed what sympathy (after 9/11) and respect the world had for the US, and have robbed US citizens of many of their basic rights.
Global warming? What's that? Science and education? Investment in our future? No, thanks - we'll stick with a good 'ole hockey mom. Ignorant, and fucking proud of it, as is always the case.
Although it looks like a shoo-in, it ain't over 'til Florida. And there are plenty of racists in this country who will vote against their own best interests. So please, get to your local elementary school, post office, town hall, or whatever, and cast your vote and make this a country we can all be proud of. We can get out of this mess, and life can be better than it is.
Download the 2CD "ultra-limited release of the David Byrne live bootleg "'Stop Wearing Suits'" at this RapidShare link.
And in semi-related news, the Talking Heads song "Once in a Lifetime" appears in the trailer of the Oliver Stone movie "W". You can watch that video below...