From This Might Be A Wiki

Fan Recaps and Comments:

Toupee: This was a great show. It was also only the second time I've seen TMBG perform live, with my first being back in May 2001 at the Chameleon Club in Lancaster. This show was at the State Theatre in State College, PA - which just so happens to be a convenient 1-mile drive from my current residence.

Oppenheimer opened for TMBG, something of a surprise as there was no one else billed for the show. A duo with a lot of help from electronics reminded me of John and John with a tape machine in a good way - they sounded great, one doing all vocals AND providing some damn good drumming, the other on electric guitar, keyboard, and a variety of other electronics. An airhorn solo drew cheers, as did a shoutout to Twin Peaks, and a number of other clever bits. Good stuff.

To be honest, I was a little concerned about the show for one reason: the State Theatre is a seated venue. The peculiarity of this was initially pointed out by Oppenheimer, while everyone sat quietly through their songs and applauded wildly immediately after each (a strange contrast). But after TMBG started rocking out with the two opening tracks of The Else, Flans said something along the lines of "You guys look like you're watching TV, real fuckin' comfy! But if your spirit moves you to stand up..." and sure enough everybody jumped up when they resumed with Birdhouse In Your Soul. [A significant number of older and obese people continued to sit through the show, or stood for only older songs that they recognized, which was strange and somewhat awkward for the people directly adjacent to them, surely.]

They played well over half of The Else - 8 songs in total, I believe, and they all sounded great. A lot of the audience didn't seem to know the new songs but the band sounded so tight that most people seemed to soak it up anyway. Some of the tracks played included I'm Impressed and Take Out the Trash, which opened the show; they pointed out Marty Beller's great drumming in Upside Down Frown (unfortunately, I could hardly see Marty from my position, although it was only because Linnell and his keyboard were so close); explained the background of Contrecoup; and a bunch of people seemed particularly pleased with them playing The Mesopotamians.

They also played a whole bunch of classics that I was super impressed with - Birdhouse, Puppet Head, The Guitar, Particle Man, Istanbul, New York City... I was stoked to hear Ana Ng and She's an Angel, two of my absolute favorites. They played a few songs from The Spine - Experimental Film, Memo to Human Resources, and Damn Good Times. Everything sounded freaking awesome. Danny Weinkauf's bass was excellent, Marty Beller never missed a beat, Dan Miller was on top of his guitar game and also provided backup vocals that I found myself singing with him. Also of note was the impressive solo piece Miller played that led into Istanbul.

The Johns were amazing, of course, with Flans all over the stage, jamming out on the electric guitar, cracking jokes, and in mighty fine form with his singing. Linnell was upright at his keyboard, super attentive, providing great vocals, and received great applause every time he picked up the accordion. The two did 'Maybe I Know' by themselves, I believe kicking off the second encore. An honest to goodness mistake in the middle of the songs led to Flans improvising with a song about scuba diving before they decided to start over rather than pick up where the left off (this was hilarious).

It was a great show.