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Fan Recaps and Comments:


What an amazing night!! This was my first TMBG show, and I bought my tickets about four months ago. I've been waiting so anxiously and excitedly that at one point someone in my office commented that perhaps the show wouldn't be as good as I thought it would be. She couldn't have been more wrong. Granted, I don't have any other TMBG experience to which I may compare the June 15 show, but of all the concerts I've attended it is at the very top.
First, the Hubs and I ate an early dinner at the HOB restaurant. In addition to an excellent meal and two very strong drinks, we also received the benefit of the Pass the Line voucher. During dinner, we were met with a fellow TMBWikian and seasoned fan, Rebecca. (I'd mentioned to recently-friended Kelly that I'd be in a green TMBG app shirt and green hairbow, so that made me very easy to spot.) Rebecca joined me and the Hubs in the PTL line, and we waited for about two hours before doors. A great opportunity to get to know her a little, and while we were waiting Dan walked by us, watched a musician performing in the open area, then disappeared into the Downtown Disney crowd. (He did resurface for the show.) Even better, Danny walked by and started chatting with the guys at the front of the line. I'd mentioned to Rebecca that I was hoping to have some of the guys sign my son's TMBG sticker chart, and she encouraged me to hit Danny up. Being way too shy to approach him myself, I asked her to come with me--and she offered not just emotional support, but physical support as a writing desk. Danny really is the nicest guy; I introduced myself, explained the chart to him, and asked if he would sign. I've got a great photo of him signing it on Rebecca's back, with a smile on his face. He tugged at my shirtsleeve and asked whether they were selling them online (my response was, "that's where I bought mine, but they may be selling them elsewhere"). Just a small, down-to-earth gesture, but it was unexpected and pleasant. I pushed my luck further and asked for a photo, and he very kindly obliged. (His smile is nice and genuine; mine is more of a stupid grin...)
By the time that we were being frisked and allowed entry to the venue, the PTL line reached back to, and partially around, the fountain just outside the HOB. (I was seventh in line.) We took our places right at the stage, just stage-left of center. I was at Rebecca's right, and a very sweet couple (she would become my "potty partner" and a force to be reckoned with barreling through the packed house between sets, and he was kind enough to purchase my Drinky Crow shirt while he got one for her) staked the claim to the right of me.
Moon Hooch was fun to watch. Rebecca had given me a little insight into their act (including a spit warning and possibility of barefeet at eye level), so I kind of knew what to expect. They were really something, and seemed like a great bunch of guys.
When the boys took the stage, I literally had butterflies in my stomach. I'm over thirty years old, but I was giddy as a teenage fangirl. They opened with "When Will You Die" (one of my favorite tracks from Join Us, second only to Canajaharie), and I started hopping and didn't slow down until "Letterbox," three songs later. Fortunately, "Memo to Human Resources" was next, so I was able to sing and sway before "Don't Let's Start" necessitated more maniacal bouncing and top-of-lungs singing that carried through "Circular Karate Chop" and "Nanobots." (Poor Rebecca--I can't sing for shit, and she got an earful of not just my singing, but my crazed concert screams as well.) "Cloisonne" was fabulous (and fortunately for me, another non-bouncy song--I was really getting a workout!), but since Linnell moved to stage right I didn't catch much of the bass clarinet action. After some melodica breathalyzer jokes, They did "Icky"--not in my top three Nano-faves, but after seeing Linnell sing it just a few feet away from me, I find myself liking it a little more now. We had a great view of Danny's "Dr. Worm" leap, and some serious bouncing for "The Guitar" and "Birdhouse in Your Soul." The Johns engaged in some banter about threats by a certain theme park rodent to give a good show, then started the Anaheim venue song. And then they started it again, but this time they finished. "Turn Around" brought Linnell right back in front of me with his accordion, and after "We Live in a Dump" he cam back for "Istanbul." Again, not one of my favorite songs, but the Johns playing it as a duo was awesome. "Mesopotamians" and "Ana Ng" made for some serious spazzy jumping (thank god for the stage--at one point my legs felt like they were going to give out), then "Lost My Mind," "Tesla," and the 123 Intros slowed things down a bit. Apparently I got my second wind for "James K. Polk;" today I searched YouTube for footage from the show, and someone who must have been just behind me posted one that shows my hairbow jumping around as if I were on a pogo stick. The first encore brought us "You're On Fire," "Can't Keep Johnny Down," and "Damn Good Times." The second was a bittersweet "End of the Tour." (At one point, I was getting a worried that we wouldn't get a second encore, but Rebecca explained that they weren't truly done until Linnell took the bass clarinet.)
I was hoping for a setlist, stick, or drumhead, but I can't complain since I was able to get Marty's signature on the sticker chart. (And Danny, bless his heart--when I was begging for his setlist he explained that he was giving it to a kid whose birthday was that day--again, a small considerate gesture. I mean really, he didn't even have to acknowledge me, let alone offer an explanation). Rebecca scored a setlist and was kind enough to send me a picture of it, since my cell battery died about five minutes into the TMBG set and I hadn't bothered to bring a camera. (I'll be scouring Facebook for photos to tag...) Assuming I am correctly interpreting Flans shorthand, Puppethead and Famous Polka were on the list (as was Minimum Wage), but sadly did not make it into the show. Can't Keep Johnny Down wasn't on the list, however, so we didn't get shorted by much.
It was an amazing show, and so fun to experience it with a friendly TMBG show expert. I was excited that I knew all the songs, but I have to admit that each time Linnell looked in my direction I got distracted and stumbled over the lyrics. It was an overwhelmingly wonderful experience, and I absolutely cannot wait to do it again.


This was my second TMBG show I have ever been to. And, man, it was good.
The venue was right in the middle of Downtown Disney. We got in line a half hour before the doors were supposed to start. And after about 10 minutes of standing, John Flansburgh and Robin Goldwasser passed by us! It's only, like, my favorite person in the world. I didn't know exactly what to do, except nonchalantly tell my companions "OH YEAH, and that's John Flansburgh like right behind you."
The doors opened 35 minutes late, and we ran to the standing area as quickly as we could. I got a nice spot around 5 people back behind center stage. Moon Hooch opened, and they were amazing, although I think I prefer JoCo as an opener.
The crowd seemed a lot older and nerdier (no offence!) than the one I saw at the previous show.
TMBG opened with When Will You Die, New York City and Call You Mom. These were all songs that I was really hoping they would play. Then, they played Letterbox, Memo, and Don't Let's Start, which surprised me. I was disappointed by the use of backing tracks on Circular Karate Chop. I’m not exactly sure why.
Before Nanobots:
Flansburgh: I only sing one note on this.
Before Cloisonné:
Flansburgh: We're working on a Moon Hooch Tribute band. We have folded into our arsenal of musical instruments, in this pursuit, the bass clarinet. It's not as impressive as the Contra-Bass clarinet, ladies and gentlemen, but we want to remind everyone that They Might Be Giants are the only Moon Hooch tribute act that matters.
Before Icky, Flansburgh joked that the melodica that Dan had was a actually a Breathalyzer. It wouldn't play unless his blood alcohol level was below .03. Apparently it was at .029.
Dr. Worm was the first song of two to feature accordion. Linnell had his tiny red one.
Before Anaheim, they said that they were "contractually obligated" to play this "completely obscene song that no one likes."
Flansburgh: Listen, we don't like it any more than you do.
They also said that there was a guy with three fingers up on the balcony who made sure that they played the venue song.
Linnell: And he's like you guys better play that song, or your shit canned! I mean it this time! Look, our hands are tied. That's what I'm saying.
Flansburgh: These steamboats don't just pay for themselves. He's poking his three fingers in our chests, and steering us. You guys. Cheer up.
There was a false start:
Linnell: I'm really sorry, we're gonna get in a lot of trouble [with that three fingered guy].
Flansburgh: Yo, Dan. Turn your shit up.
The people started yelling "Turn yo shit up".
After the song, Linnell got his baby accordion.
Linnell: [In three-fingered man voice] I wanna be perfect.
Flansburgh: No fuckups.
They then played Turn around, which was another pleasant surprise.
Before We Live in a Dump:
Flansburgh: This is for all the apartment-dwellers in the audience.
The Avatars were really funny. "Your applause is our oxygen. We're really just a bundle of oxygen in a suitcase."
Istanbul was nice as a duo. I actually preferred it to the overdone full band affair.
You're on Fire was absolutely excellent. I daresay it was the best performance of the night. And, of course The End of the Tour was an excellent way to end it.
After the show, the band handed out stickers. Flansy gave me a whole stack of them, and I still have absolutely no idea what to do with them. But he TOUCHED MY HAND.
I finally got Nanobots on Vinyl (signed, too!). I've been waiting all this time so I could bypass shipping fees. Overall, that was the best TMBG show I've been to (which certainly isn't saying much), and possibly the best rock show I've ever seen!