I'm glad I picked the middle show of the Gorillaz run at the Apollo Theater because they definitely had a few kinks to work out at first. Thankfully, everything seems to have been figured out and Gorillaz were spot on last night. The show started with two puppet versions of Gorillaz members (2D and Murdoc) doing a little intro and a few jokes from one of the balconies. From that point on, it was all about excellent music and graphics. The show was basically watching a hip-hop/pop-rock orchestra playing along with some of the coolest art I've ever seen at a live music performance. Shaun Ryder, Bootie Brown, Neneh Cherry, and all of the other featured players simply smoothed right onto the stage at the appropriate moment then did their thing and disappeared. My favorite was probably De La Soul...but how could it not be? They brought so much fun and energy to the stage it was hard not to be jumping right along with them immediately.
Based solely upon sheer artistic breadth, this concert should've been at someplace like Carnegie Hall where the 'serious' music events are held. Don't get me wrong, it was really great to be back at the Apollo for the first time in two years (since I spent a week there in May of 2004), but seriously... Who else is out there putting on live shows with a full rock band, a full string section, backup singers, custom animated art, guest choirs, and a variety of excellent guest singers, rappers and musicians?? Chris is right, Damon Albarn is quite a musical genius and comparisons to David Byrne make a lot of sense to me. Oh and by the way, Damon's voice last night sounded better than I've ever heard before.
- Security was nonexistent when going into the venue but wouldn't allow me to take any pictures. None. They were all over me when I tried.
- The band started right before 9:00 and played for about 70 minutes...I don't have a set list but it seems like it hasn't changed over the first three nights.
- There were three empty seats right next to me and I hear that there are tickets still available for the next shows.
Go HERE to see a video of "Dare" taken at the show on April 2nd.