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Fan Recaps and Comments:

Review by Jonathan Ehret, The Buffalo News, Nov. 4, 1994:

By adding a few live bodies, They Might Be Giants filled Rockwell Hall on Wednesday night with a sound that dwarfed its earlier tours.
And it is no small renovation for the Giants, led by the Brooklyn duo of John Flansburgh and John Linnell, who dumped a longtime band member -- their drum machine -- and put the sticks in the hands of a human. They Might Be Giants now has swelled to a sextet for its fifth release, "John Henry," and tour, also adding a bassist and two-man horn section.
"This is our first album with the full band, and we wanted to capture the best part of the live sound while holding on to the focus and intensity of our previous albums," said Flansburgh, who with Linnell has found success in their short, quirky, catchy melodies.
Perhaps hoping to avoid overwhelming longtime fans, the Giants began Wednesday night's show more like their previous tours, with comparatively minimalist renditions of four songs, one each from "John Henry's" immediate predecessors.
But that quickly changed with the show's first hit song, "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)." Drummer Brian Doherty's Spartan kit, as well as a weathered park bench and black drape behind Flansburgh and Linnell, all suddenly disappeared, and a full stage, drum kit, horn section and bassist Tony Maimone assumed new roles in the show.
The new songs, many of which were recorded live in the studio for "John Henry" by the entire band, shined brightest. But the older favorites -- including "Don't Let's Start," "Ana Ng" and "Birdhouse in Your Soul" -- weren't muddled by the translation to big band.
The six-piece They Might Be Giants seemed to produce something truer to the full sound of the originals, yet took any risk out of variations on a successful theme.
Despite the drum machine's demise, and much to the delight of the many dancing fans in Rockwell Hall, one of the band's eclectic trademarks remained intact: Linnell's accordion. They Might Be Giants without an accordion would be something like Oreos without the filling.

The Giants moved in and out of hard rockers, pairing off the salsa-flavored "No One Knows My Plan" with the speed and distortion of "Stomp Box," both from "John Henry." The encore included their latest single, "Snail Shell," followed by "Spy," a '60s movie soundtrack takeoff.