Rain or shine, Wednesday’s festivities were a ball, mixing dance feelings both aggressive and welcoming, along with frantic alt-rock, the night was the most consistent and filled line-up of the week so far.
Kicking on the stage cooler than ever, Sarah Barthel and Josh Carter were in their groove tonight. While playing through newer tracks early no, they really kicked out their interaction with the crowd, and overall killed it on stage. Admittedly the wave of new material and more abrasive material that filled the entire first half of the show did start to grow a little exhausting at times, especially for new fans, their lively energy, notably oozing from Barthel, made it easier to swallow. Hitting “Don’t Move” their set started to pick up momentum, really hitting its stride after “Falling In Love” as they put in all the energy you would think had been used up, with Barthel even replicating some of the killer moves from the video. Along with the intense back and forth of “You’re Mine” that found the duo leaning into ecstatic deliveries, closing on “You Don’t Get Me High Anymore” found them going all out, with the already gripping visual backdrop getting even trippier.
No frills, the Shins were ready to go when they brought tracks from their new album to the stage. Covering a lot of the pop tracks like “A Name For You” and the more bouncy, dark romps like “Dead Alive” they picked through their new album smartly. Performing their songs sublimely, they were noticeably less theatrical than the other offerings of the night, offering a much more true to album experience. Going through tracks like “The Rifle’s Spiral” and “Phantom Limb” they weren’t content to leave some great older songs off the table. Closing on “Simple Song” before performing on of the few non-headlining encores of the night with “The Fear” and “New Slang” for quite the finale.
Always a legendary show when they perform, tonight’s set by New York’s indie heartthrobs was no different. While rain plagued a few technical aspects of the show (Nancy was mildly electrocuted), the quick synth switches by Gavin and Nancy made it seem like only time between songs was being lost. Opening on “Yr City’s a Sucker” they were aiming their crosshairs right at the fans before dropping in the loud bass and cowbell of “Daft Punk Is Playing At My House.” On the chanting fury of “You Wanted A Hit” the song’s fiery instrumental break was one of the most shocking of the night as the bend let loose to an unprecedented amount of lighting flare. With Pat slowly creeping in the beat to “Movement” Al was raring to go, jumping up and down while swinging a guitar wildly before the song’s intense chorus brought on the first crowd swell of the night.
Through the punching breakdown of “Yeah” and the soaring vocals of “Someone Great” they moved the crowd while getting them to sing every last note almost deafeningly. Leaning in to read a sign, he read “Don’t Blame The Canadians” before recognizing his own lyrics and saying “Oh Yeah, I guess that’s fair.” Moving into the double singles of “Call The Police” and “American Dream” the newer material carried on par with their older tracks, especially the “We All” cries of the former. Nearing the end of their set on “Home” the crowd began to bounce again, raising and lowering their arms to the heavenly ah’s that make its groove even more addictive. Closing on “New York, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down” they not only brought their most intimate moments, but also their most ripping as the crashing hits, shredding guitars and distortion made for one hell of a closer.
Not satisfied without playing their most iconic tracks, they launched into the beat of “Dance Yrself Clean” as the crowd resumed moving their arms along with the ah’s the band dropped in unison throughout the intro. Dropping the loud beat, the crowd went wild, almost pushing uncomfortably hard at times, as the screams of Murphy were matched by the shredded voices of the crowd. “All My Friends” brought one last moment of joy to the crowd as the vocals were sung with deafening ferocity, while being so heartwarming in the crowd’s sheer love of the song, you could spot one of Murphy’s rare wide grins from something other than messing with his band-mates.