Yeasayer and Icy Demons at the Bluebird Theater
The result was a set full of surprising yet recognizable songs. Surprisingly, some of the material that faded into the background on the album shone especially strong here - "Worms" came alive, and "Wait for the Wintertime" and "No Need to Worry" were positively epic. The two or three (or was it four?) new songs were uniformly excellent and well-suited to live performance (no surprise, since they were presumably written on the road sometime in the fourteen months the band has been on tour). It put me in mind of other bands I've seen or heard about that manage to create something different live from their recorded work that is equally intense and beautiful - acts like Pink Floyd and Radiohead, which is good company no matter how you slice it.
It wasn't perfect. In many ways, the band is still feeling things out as a live outfit. At times the momentum stalled and some of the considerable power that had been built up simply dissipated. Some of the stronger material from the album, such as "Wait for the Summer," lost something live. Still, it's obvious things are moving in the right direction, and an album or two and a couple of tours from now, Yeasayer should be the best thing happening in live music.
Personal Bias: Although I discovered it too late for it to make my end-of-year list, Yeasayer's debut was definitely one of my favorite records released in 2007.
Random Detail: The drummer from Hot IQs was flyering at the show.
By the Way: I only caught two songs by Icy Demons. As a snap judgment, my take was they did some decent, Animal Collective-inspired tribal/drum-circle pop.
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