CONCERT RECAP: Yeasayer plus Daedelus @ Republic – 9/7/12

I want to preface this recap of last Friday night with a little note of appreciation for the bar staff at the – when you can serve the thirsty, party-seeking youth the way they did, you can host a sweaty, dance-frenzied hell of a good time any day of the week. That being said, let me divulge the details:

The night began with disc-jockeying madman, , a strange bit of soul and flesh whose knack for mixing the prime musical goods is nothing short of delicious (anyway, when you throw in some heady sampling of Tame Impala, you can’t go wrong). Picture a farmyard scarecrow combined with a taller Napoleon Bonaparte, the combination of which has been tediously electrocuted into the sprawling-haired figure in front of glowing lights, and you have Friday night’s opening act.

After our aforementioned mad scientist did his slick computerized tricks, the inner-house of the Republic became a bit more dense – that is to say, the hip-youth pilgrims of rock-electronica began their push inward towards the stage in avid anticipation of the Brooklyn-based phenomenon. We all waited as a few prepping techies made their way throughout the band’s array of synthesizers, amps, and other sweet sound gadgets, all of which were surrounded by three walls of large, shiny silver concave bowls, a sure sign of the visual weirdness to come. Already a thick mist of blue light was caught in the anticipatory air, floating like a lovely abstract invitation for all of us to join some brilliant cosmic party.

And join we did, as Yeasayer blasted their set off with “Blue Paper,” the music tangled within spectral lights spiraling throughout the air in globular lasers. Then the blue mist came in again, a perfect symbol of the electric blue hum that rose, as the music rose, to the tops of our craniums to keep peace over all of our thoughts.

I’ll admit, I was a little bit skeptical of the band’s newest album, Fragrant World, as, at first glance, it seemed to lack a portion of the unique organic substance with which All Hour Cymbals and Odd Blood had previously captured my soul. But all of that skepticism was obliterated upon the brilliant performance of “Henrietta,” the overall effect of which would have instilled an ethereal rapture within any observing soul on Friday night. As in each song performed, the collaboration of vocals on “Henrietta” was as pure of an art as anything I have ever seen or heard, and on top of the surrounding whirls of primal percussion and instrumental bliss throughout the night, it seemed clear to me that, if anything, Yeasayer’s latest album was under-produced. Basically, this live performance was proof of the compassionate nature of this band’s artistic triumph, in that it portrayed to the audience a ritualistic gift of hip-moving, head-bobbing and heart-touching musical devotion.

Ultimately, the set covered a beautiful mix of all three of the band’s albums, and each song received a religiously grateful response from the crowd. When it was time for the “Madder Red” experience, a beckoning wave of rhythmic hands flowed through the scaling blue and white lights that pierced the sweet venue mist. Then came “Waiting for the Summer,” and the crowd, as in some sort of instinctual appreciation of geographical nature, yelled form their hearts along with the lyrics, “sing it to the river.” As if this unspoken quasi-dedication to the Crescent City wasn’t cool enough already, front man confessed to the crowd, “I love coming to New Orleans, a lot. [It's] weird as shit.” Well, as most of us know, we welcome that sort of weird spirituality, and we’re forever grateful for those artists who make their way into town to give us the unusual experience of witnessing a flower bloom from within, as Yeasayer certainly did with perfection.

Check out the set list and photos below (Photos by Corey Thomas):

Blue Paper
Henrietta
2080
Longevity
O.N.E.
Don’t Come Closer
Madder Red
Demon Road
Wait for the Summer
Reagan’s Skeleton
Ambling Alp

Encore:
Fingers Never Bleed
Devil and the Deed
Tightrope
Folk Hero Shtick

September 10, 2012 |  by  |  Editor's Favorites, Photos, Reviews
About the author

Can be your friend if you like words. Can probably be your friend even if you do not like words. Lives in New Orleans, looks for shade. Thanks Miner Johnson (@brahbrahbrah) for this prestigious career. You should thank him, too.

 
  • http://twitter.com/requiemofnoise Steven Hatley

    Great review and pictures. I would have been a bit disappointed not hearing “I Remember.” Also, is it just me or does the new album remind you of Radiohead?

    • hangstrom

      Would’ve liked “Red Cave” It’s definitely more minimal than the other two, I’d even go as far as to say it’s more similar to “The Eraser” than full out Radiohead, but I feel ya

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