Bartees Strange didn't get to tour his excellent debut album, Live Forever, last year because of COVID, but now he's finally returned to the stage, playing a Pitchfork Fest set, headlining shows, and supporting Phoebe Bridgers. We thought our first chance to see him in NYC would be at his Friday afternoon Governors Ball set, but he announced an intimate club show at Mercury Lounge the night before (one of GovBall's After Dark after-shows), and added a second, late show when the first quickly sold out.

With his genre-fluid sound, catchy songs, and tight band, Bartees will have no trouble captivating the GovBall stage, and it was a real treat to be able to see him in a small room, too. I went to the late show, which he vowed to make even more lit than the early one. While I can't compare the sets, he and his band went hard from the start and had the crowd bouncing and singing along the whole time. He delivered sultry vibes with "Flagey God" and also included a couple of his epic, transformative covers of The National in the set, along with new single "Weights" and an unreleased song.

Hannah Jadagu opened the late show and got a warm reception with her eclectic sound. See pictures from the whole show (including one of Bartees' setlist), and a video clip, below.