Liars played a surprise tour warm-up show at Alphaville (pics, setlist, review)
Apparently a lot of people thought tonight's secret show at Alphaville was gonna be Lana Del Rey, perhaps thanks to the club's Instagram about it that was loaded with LDR references. Well, as Alphaville's sandwich board later revealed, it was in fact Liars, not Lana, who were there tonight, playing a warm up gig for their tour, which officially starts Saturday in London. Alphaville did have Lust for Life blaring on the stereo as I walked in just before 7 PM, and there is currently a LDR shrine set up by the entrance to the back performance space.
While Angus Andrew pretty much made the new Liars album, TFCF, on his own, for this tour he has recruited two-thirds of Brooklyn's Bambara to be his backing, and if you're familiar with their dark, pummeling sound you know they make for an excellent Liars chassis. We got a full set that drew from throughout their whole catalog, with lots of hits: "Plaster Casts of Everything," "Houseclouds," "Mess on a Mission," "Broken Witch," "Mr Your On Fire Mr," though only a couple new ones from the forthcoming TFCF ("Coins in My Caged Fist" and "Cred Woes"). Setlist is below and pictures from the show are in the gallery above.
The set seemed to have been chosen to exploit Bambara's heavy-hitting strengths and the volume at the Alphaville show was enough to knock you back a bit. The 7 PM crowd (around a hundred or so I'd say) wasn't quite in a mosh mood, but this is a rowdy, bash-you-over-the-head version of Liars -- which is a bit of a surprise given the somewhat subdued, glitchy nature of TFCF. (This is not a complaint at all.) Angus, I don't think, said a single word to the crowd, instead getting deep inside the songs and going out-of-body a couple times. For a test-the-waters show, it was great. I can't wait to see what they're like when their tour officially comes to NYC next month.
Also in NYC: Liars are throwing a special listening party for TFCF at Brooklyn Bazaar on August 25. In keeping with the album's cover art, the party will play out like a wedding reception, and Angus Andrew will be DJing (quite possibly in a bridal gown). It's free and all-ages but you do need to RSVP.
SETLIST: Liars @ Alphaville 08/3/2017
Drums Get Glimpse
Coins in My Caged Fist
Scarecrows on a Killer Slant
Mr. You're on Fire Mr
Mess on a Mission
Can't Hear Well
It Fit When I Was a Kid
Plaster Casts of Everything
The Other Side of Mt. Heart Attack
photos by Ryan Muir