They Might Be Giants - Music Hall of Williamsburg - Gigs - Reviews - Soundblab

They Might Be Giants - Music Hall of Williamsburg

by paul_guyet Rating:8 Release Date:2012-01-22

February 22 was They Might Be Giants' second in a series of 12 shows at the Music Hall of Williamsburg (one on the last Sunday of every month). Its focus was the band's eponymous first album, also known as The Pink Album.

After a wonderful, almost-acoustic set by Jonathan Coulton, John Flansburgh and John Linnell, both armed with coffee cups, took the stage, opening with an accordion-driven version of 'Chess Piece Face'. Then, Flansburgh grabbed his guitar and they began performing 'I Hope That I Get Old Before I Die' as a duet before the rest of the band joined them and began the show in earnest.

As much as I enjoy They Might Be Giants' 'full album' shows, I do like the thrill of not knowing what's coming next. That said, it's always fantastic to hear how the band interprets tracks from their now 30-year-old debut album.

Highlights this time around included one of my new favorite TMBG tracks, 'Music Jail'; 'Let Me Tell You About My Operation' (another live debut, handled masterfully by guitarist Dan Miller); 'The Famous Polka'; 'Istanbul (Not Constantinople)' (solely for Miller's hypnotic acoustic guitar intro); the live debut of 'Answer' (which almost didn't happen as "there are so many words," according to Linnell, but they managed to pull it off wonderfully), and, finally, the triumphant return of 'Robot Parade'.

Strangely absent from the past two sets has been anything from their 1994 album, John Henry, leading me to want them to have a John Henry show, as I've never seen one and it'd be awesome. This year, they've confirmed a Flood show* (happening at the end of March), and a The Else show (happening at the end of May).

They've just had their first album show and I've seen them do Lincoln and Apollo 18 as well**. I want Factory Showroom and John Henry, and they have seven more chances this year to do either or both. So... you know... do it, guys. Come on.

As I said, next month is their Flood show, where they will play all of Flood (perhaps backwards?) unless something goes weird.

* You can download your free copy of Flood Live in Australia here.

** Have I mentioned that I am spoiled?

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