19 December 2007

Yeasayer @ Mercury Lounge - 15 December 2007

Yeasayer played Mercury Lounge this past Saturday, the fourth of four bands to take the stage at the December '07 incarnation of the ever-popular Friction concert series held by Crackers United. Because of all of the recent attention the band has been receiving, the show was full of hype, large expectations, and lots of people who materialized at the last second to catch only the final band. Sounds like a potential recipe for a big letdown, but that didn't happen on Saturday night. Thanks to Yeasayer, this most recent Friction show was sold out and packed and full of energy and goodness and mesmerizing song after mesmerizing song and it was, it was... awesome. And Peter Gabriel too.

During CMJ EAR FARM caught Yeasayer @ R Bar, so we were fully aware of what to expect from the band as they were welcomed into the room with headliner applause. We already knew they'd bring to the party a little bit of Talking Heads, early Pink Floyd, Peter Gabriel, Men at Work, Grateful Dead, Nickelback(?), and a unified sound that is, without doubt, entirely their own. Song after song the band blazed through their set with an energy that's simply not present on their debut album All Hour Cymbals. On the album, songs such as "No Need To Worry" and "Final Path" come across as standard pseudo-hippie new wave rehash (think The English Beat meets Rusted Root) but when Yeasayer plays these songs live they are a revelation; bursting with energy, emotion, urgency, and an appreciation/love for their audience that was somehow (sadly) lost in the production process. Someone record their live show and release that as a record, for criminy.

Hype is a ruthless son of a bitch. In the rocky landscape of 2007, bands often get chewed up and spit out before they even consider to begin to "find themselves" within their own songs - this is never a good thing. And while it's entirely too early to go ahead and anoint Yeasayer and hand them the key to Brooklyn, their group charisma (highlighted at each performance by lead singer Chris Keating's ability to explode as if inhabited by the spirit of Ian Curtis at one moment and then calmly sustain a beautiful vocal moment the next) cuts like a lighthouse beacon through the fog of doubtful NY concert goers, converting the stoic arm-folders and leaving everyone equally impressed. Wait'll the rest of the country gets a load of these guys.

Listen:
"2080"
"Sunrise"

Watch:
"Wait for the Summer" live from this show (on YouTube, via Mr. Mammoth)

See Yeasayer LIVE in 2008:

01-16 Washington, DC - Black Cat Backstage *
01-17 Chapel Hill, NC - Local 506 *
01-18 Atlanta, GA - The Earl *
01-19 Baton Rouge, LA - Spanish Moon *
01-20 Houston, TX - Walter's on Washington *
01-21 Dallas, TX - Granada Theater *
01-22 Austin, TX - Emo's Jr. *
01-24 Phoenix, AZ - Rhythm Room *
01-25 San Diego, CA - The Casbah *
01-26 Los Angeles, CA - The Echo *
01-28 San Francisco, CA - Bottom of the Hill *
01-30 Portland, OR - Holocene *
01-31 Seattle, WA - Neumos *
02-02 Boise, ID - Neurolux *
02-03 Salt Lake City, UT - Kilby Court *
02-04 Denver, CO - Hi-Dive *
02-06 Omaha, NE - The Slowdown *
02-07 Minneapolis, MN - 7th Street Entry *
02-08 Chicago, IL - Schubas *
02-09 Toronto, Ontario - El Mocambo *
02-10 Montreal, Quebec - La Sala Rossa *
02-12 Allston, MA - Great Scott *
02-14 Brooklyn, NY - Music Hall of Williamsburg *
02-15 Philadelphia, PA - Johnny Brenda's *
02-19 Nijmegen, Netherlands - Doornroosie
02-20 Brussels, Belgium - AB
02-21 Paris, France - Nouveau Casino
02-22 St. Malo, France - Omnibus
02-23 Barcelona, Spain - Razzmatazz
02-25 Cologne, Germany - Gebaude 9
02-26 Berlin, Germany - Lido
02-27 Gothenburg, Sweden - Pusterviksbaren
02-28 Olso, Norway - John Dee
02-29 Stockholm, Sweden - Klubb Spark at Debaser Medis
03-01 Malmo, Sweden - Debaser
03-05 Birmingham, England - Bar Academy
03-06 London, England - ICA
03-08 Glasgow, Scotland - King Tuts
03-09 Manchester, England - Night & Day
03-10 London, England - TBA
03-11 Amsterdam, Netherlands - Melkweg
05-09-11 Camber, England - Camber Sands Holiday Centre (ATP vs. Pitchfork) #

* with MGMT
# with the Hold Steady, Jens Lekman, Black Lips, Hot Chip, Les Savy Fav, No Age, Of Montreal, Man Man, Los Campesinos!, Caribou, Glass Candy, Dirty Projectors, Redd Kross, Marissa Nadler, Deerhunter, Wooden Shjips, Meat Puppets, the Black Angels, Shit and Shine, Sebadoh, Ween, Pissed Jeans, Fuck Buttons, Apse, A Place to Bury Strangers
See more pictures of Yeasayer (from this show, not taken by me) HERE.

Visit Yeasayer on MySpace.

8 comments:

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