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- Cyclops Rock
- Boss Of Me
- I've Got A Fang
- Lie Still, Little Bottle
- Yeh Yeh
- Doctor Worm
- Particle Man
- Man, It's So Loud In Here
- Another First Kiss
- Don't Let's Start
- She's An Angel
- She's Actual Size
- Hopeless Bleak Despair
- Istanbul (Not Constantinople)
- Why Does The Sun Shine?
- James K. Polk
- New York City
Fan Recaps and Comments:
The first opening band was The Incredible Moses Leroy, and I liked them well enough that I'm going to buy their CD when I'm next at the music store. The first reason to like them? They had a PowerBook G4! But beyond that, they were a very fun show with highly a entertaining slide show acompanying their songs which totally got me in the mood for TMBG. I'll write a more in depth review of their album after I buy.
So I was all ready for TMBG after The Incredible Moses Leroy, but instead we got another opening band -- "The Bicycle Thief". The Bicycle Thief was two acoustic guitars and a bass playing very folky music, which was fine and dandy, and I mostly liked the songs (even if, as someone near me pointed out, they were the lead singers personal soap box), but they were the complete opposite of what I wanted at that point. The Incredible Moses Leroy entertained the audience and put them in the mood for TMBG, and then that mood was quashed by The Bicycle Thief. Well, for me at least. Which isn't to say that I didn't like The Bicycle Thief, honest! The lead singer was typically folky, and the female vocalist had an incredible voice (when she got to butt in on the lead singers soap box and actually sing), and if they had a CD, I would actually also consider buying it. But The Bicycle Thief should have gone on first, followed by The Incredible Moses Leroy and then TMBG, and everything would have been perfect. Ah well.
But then they started the Cyborg Dans and we were all in the mood for TMBG again! The first barrage without much of a break at all was Cyclops Rock, Bangs, Boss of Me, Older, Fingertips, and I've Got A Fang. These mostly flowed pretty well into each other, and were totally rocking where they were supposed to be, and so on. I liked I've Got A Fang a lot more in person than I did on Mink Car, Fingertips was great to see (Flans had a lot of motions for his fingertips), and the rest rocked.
Then Linnell put on the Bari Sax and I was in heaven. First there was Lie Still, Little Bottle, and the crowd was asked to snap along. When everyone just started snapping randomly, Flans reminded the audience that "You're supposed to snap in time.. none of this frisco freestyle snapping. Listen to Dan for the beat!" And the combination of Flans's rendition of the words, the snapping, the stick (a large (probably 10 to 12 feet long) wooden stick with a microphone on the end which was flans pounded on the ground for a great effect), and Linnell on the Bari sax was just... perfect. Seriously. Boomp, Bomp, Bompp, Bomp-bomm...
And then that was followed with Yeh Yeh, a song which I like anyway, but in person it was... totally fucking fantastic. Again Linnell on the Bari, and Flans going nuts on the vocals. No, really. As Flans warned before the song, "This song is three minutes long. It has a lot of words in it. And we didn't write the words. And we have enough trouble remembering all the words to the songs we wrote, so... uh... Whenever the band is ready, I guess." Oh man. This is the song that's been burned into my head as "the concert" at the moment. Yeah, Yeah, Yeah, Yeah-eah. Oh god it was sweet.
Okay, so coming off of that high, we got Dr. Worm, Drink, Particle Man, and Mammal, all of which were fine. Nothing exciting or new. They sufficiently maintained the intensity, but didn't actually do much to prepare me for Man, It's So Loud In Here. The live performance of this new version (as opposed to the old version, which I haven't heard for a long time and which I'm listening to right now because I forgot what it sounded like) was incredible, and man it was loud, and it was intense.
There had been repeated requests for Spider, to which Flans was jokining that "We don't play that fucking song anymore. Fuck all of you. Why do you want to hear songs that you have heard before?" and a lot of other variants in a fake brittish accent. It was highly amusing. I think another request for Spider prompted Flans to say "We're having a midshow crisis, so could you just shut up?" It sounds kind of rude written down like that, but it was highly amusing.
So at this point my notes on the show actually kind of break down because I was way into it and everything was so intense... and I lost track of what happened in what order between here and the encore, so I'll just cover notable chunks of songs.
Another First Kiss, Don't Let's Start, She's An Angel, and She's Actual Size were all performed, and they were all very good. But these songs actually sobered me up a fair amount, as I looked around and noticed all the couples around me doing cute coupley things and I realized this was the first TMBG concert I'd been to alone. But that only really stopped me on She's An Angel and First Kiss. The other two were sufficiently intense to snap me out of it. Oh, great quotes from all of these:
- Don't Let's Start -- Flans said "We're playing this at the request of Dan's (Miller) friend Steve. It's actually kind of funny, because Dan doesn't play on this song. Maybe Steve was just trying to get rid of Dan..."
- She's An Angel -- Linnell said "What is it about every time we're going to play a quiet song, you all start making the angry gorilla noises?" Which was accompanied by Linnell doing a lot of grunting.
- She's Actual Size -- This song was Flans doing his typical showboating, but it's standard Dan (Hickey) drum solo was way funny. Flans' running commentary ran something like "They Might Be Giants are here to serve all of your drum solo needs. To hear Dan do (some drummer), press 2. To hear dan do (some other drummer), press 3. (and so on). To hear Dan compare and contrast... Animal from the Muppets with Buddy Rich, press 6. (And then it cycled back and forth between Animal and Buddy Rich for several times)." This got a huge reaction out of the audience.
Somewhere in there, Dan (Miller) started in on this wicked long guitar solo, and it kept going and going and it was nuts and it was crazy good, and then (not surprisingly) they went into Istanbul, and then straight into The Sun. Twisting happened somewhere, but I have no recollection of where for sure. We also got Hopeless Bleak Despair, which I really liked live, and the main set ended with James K. Polk and New York City. This was all very intense and it's a huge blur.
But the first encore was also super intense. Flans gave in and gave us Spider, they went straight into The Guitar, and finished off with Birdhouse.
The second encore, on the other hand, wasn't so hot. It was just Robot Parade and Spy.
I'm pretty sure I'm missing a few songs, and I'd like to clarify the order of what happened and un-paraphrase my quotes, so if you were there, please help!
Oh yeah, TMBG drove to California from New York for this tour. Linnell said "We drove here. I can't emphasize that enough. Three days! Boy am I glad to be out of the car," to which Flans followed up with "You know it's funny, I never realized how much route 80 SUCKS."