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- Recorder review
- Daily Hampshire Gazette review
- Valley Advocate listing, May. 26, 1986
- Pearl Street listing, May. 26, 1986
- Pearl Street listing, Jun. 9, 1986
- Recorder listing, Jun. 20, 1986
- Transcript-Telegram listing, Jun. 26, 1986
- Pearl Street listing, Jun. 30, 1986
Setlist: (incomplete and possibly out of order)
Fan Recaps and Comments:
In a 2008 interview, John Flansburgh recalled the show as one of the band's first "big stage" shows:
"The stage seemed huge to me, and the Pogues seemed like they were from Planet Whisky, and they were very intimidating to us. They were like guys from a pirate ship. We were used to playing really small places before that."
Roger Catlin, TV critic for the Hartford Courant, wrote on the TV Eye blog on Mar. 19, 2006:
It was 20 years ago almost exactly, after just moving to the East Coast, that I saw a show headlined by the Pogues and featuring Mojo Nixon and Skid Roper and opened by They Might Be Giants at the Pearl Street Nightclub in Northampton, Mass. Wow. I thought: There will be shows like this every weekend out here!
Well, there wasn’t, of course. There was never another triple bill at a club like that again.
From a review of the Pogues' show by Joel Brown
The Recorder, Jul. 7, 1986:
A band from New York City called They Might Be Giants played before the Pogues — well, not exactly a band. One nerdy, chubby guy in black-plastic-framed glasses pounded on an electric guitar and sang; his partner, with that failed-art-student look, wrestled an accordion and sang. It was a big night for rock 'n' roll accordion.
The duo's set was surprisingly infectious, like the Talking Heads playing polka. They made a big hit with the crowd with quirky originals like "Rhythm Section Want Ad" and the Prince take-off "Pencil Rain," and were unceremonuously ushered off the stage by tour organizers when their all-too-brief set was over.
"Pogues upstaged at Pearl St. in Liberty Weekend event" by John E. Reily
The Daily Hampshire Gazette, Jul. 7, 1986:
Following Mojo Nixon on stage is no picnic, but They Might Be Giants are an equally strange and wonderful duo, who neatly contrasted the opening act. Where Mojo Nixon is spontaneous, musically simple and lyrically direct, They Might Be Giants used tape accompaniment and play a wide range of quirky music with skewed lyrics that consistently defy your expectations.
Songs like "Nothing's Gonna Change My Clothes" have engaged pop melodies that suddenly shift gears onto weird bridges that detour under the song and then reappear.
John Linnell, the accordionist, has a deep resonant voice with a slight nasal twang reminiscent of Phil Ochs, while John Flansburgh, the guitarist, is an ebullient stage presence who yells out "Awesome guitar solo!" instead of playing one during the instrumental break on "Puppet Head." Singing lines like "Wake up and smell the cat food," this boyish duo were lots of fun, but they were undermined by an over-trebly sound mix that blurred the contours of their fascinating music.