Monday, October 8, 2012

Stars @Mercury Lounge, Sept. 22nd

The last time I saw Stars, I was in the front row of Town Hall 5 years ago, so I wasn't motivated to catch them at Webster Hall for their most recent tour, figuring that memory would be hard to top.  But thanks to a nifty little iPhone app called Thrillcall, I managed to snag a pair of FREE tix to see the ever charming band at the itty bitty Mercury Lounge for their after-show gig.  And the late start worked out well, as it allowed me to go to a meetup in Williamsburg earlier in the evening and head back into the City with a few of my tt pals -- Angela, Just Dave and jessipedia -- for the gig.

(More words and pics after the jump.)

We got a nice opener, Savoir Adore, who played a quick set of energetic, punchy songs, including some tunes I've played on ("Bodies," "Dreamers").  I thought their style complemented Stars well, and I hope to catch them again during the upcoming CMJ Festival.

The room got very packed, as some people who were at the earlier Webster Hall show filled out the spaces.  At this point, we were up front center against the stage, which made us killer excited for the band to start.  Torquil Campbell came on stage briefly to mic check and announced, "We're gonna a lot of shit we haven't played in fucking ages."  If you look down at the bottom of my pics, you'll see the proposed setlist, but they ended up going off course anyway.

When the full band got on stage, I was nearly trembling.  Torq was right in front of me, often placing his foot on the monitor on the wobbly table that I was leaning against.  Is it possible to be too close? I wondered, as he locked eyes with me from 3 feet away throughout the set.  I felt sheepish snapping pics, and really, I was too close, so forgive the blurriness, but you'll get a sense of the intimacy of this gig.  Of course the crowd went nuts when they played older stuff from Set Yourself On Fire, all of us engaged in a sing-along.

They played for about 70 glorious minutes.  Unfortunately, even though it felt like they could have gone a bit longer, Amy disappeared off the stage near the end and never returned.  Perhaps the fatigue of playing two gigs in an evening caught up with her finally at nearly 2am.  Hopefully she and the band enjoyed it nearly as much as we did.

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