Panda Bear in NYC this past weekend! (Reviews?)
I didn't attend the Webster Hall show on Saturday, but I did attend the Brooklyn Masonic Temple show last night. Wow! Don't sleep on this tour! (Off to Europe next...) He's been playing these songs for over a year now and they sound HUGE. I loved, loved, loved the Governor's Island show last year, but this was completely different. The segues, the build ups, jams, etc. Never having been to the Brooklyn Masonic Temple and having read the place get killed on yelp.com, I had very low expectations. Maybe it was undersold because of the Webster Hall show, but we found the venue to be comfortable and spacious. We went upstairs to the balcony and got 2nd row center seats - directly facing the stage. Looking down at the floor, it never looked crowded. You could walk around pretty much anywhere. Anyway...Noah and fellow knob twiddler (name?) made the place sound huge with all sorts of sound manipulations. Noah was in great voice...and was absolutely KILLING on pop masterpieces such as Surfer's Hymn and Last Night at the Jetty. Last Night at the Jetty is as close as he's come to writing his own God Only Knows...and that's a big compliment. That is one sophisticated, spiritual, inspired piece of melody writing. I told the security guard going in that this would probably be the most well behaved audience he's worked. He told me he was working a mosh-pit the night before. Ha... People are pretty reserved at these shows. Some dancing, bobbing heads...but lots of people just kind of standing there. (Hey...everybody enjoys a show in their own way.) It was kind of weird when opening act The Present ended their (droney/spacey set) and there was no crowd reaction. Everyone just standing there like zombies looking at them. They started breaking down their gear and I kind of felt a little bad for them. But they weren't exactly waving at the audience either. Danny Perez's visuals were totally on point. Edgy at times (Great White sharks and zombie looking creatures) but then they'd turn abstract again. Very good stuff. My one complaint was the overuse of the strobes. They were a bit distracting/disorienting in this small venue. I pulled my hat down over my eyes for a good part of the slow. Anyway...my wife and I raged HARD from our seats in the balcony. I really hope there's a recording of this show or somewhere from this tour. It really shows how far these songs have developed since he first unveiled them over a year ago.