06 August 2010

The National, Terminal 5 - July 29, 2010

Since I've written a lot of reviews of The National over the past few months and there's still one more to come for the year, I'll do this review in a list format. Here are ten facts from The National's concert at Terminal 5 that seem most important:

01. Suckers, one of two opening bands, was phenomenal. They managed to be both entertaining and talented. Kurt Vile (other opening act) was the opposite.

02. Matt Berninger has never looked better. His outfit, consisting of fitted black jeans cuffed at the bottom, worn in black boots, tucked in button down shirt, vest, and black blazer, was utterly perfect. He is my choice for best dressed person in music today.

03. The concert was way too short. At around an hour and a half, the time element was disappointing and very unlike The National who usually give their audience at least 30 minutes more.

04. I'm not the biggest fan of Terminal 5, particuarly their strange routine of lining everyone up against the wall of the roof like cattle until the doors officially open for the show. I had never experienced that before and it made me feel sticky and stupid - not a good combination.

05. Bryan Devendorf is my favorite drummer. His t-shirt that read "The Ultimate is Here" is not a joke. He IS the ultimate. He adds so much to the caliber of The National that I can't imagine another drummer doing what he can. There's so much personality and unique performance style mixed in to his playing. He came out on stage early to set up his drums and people in the front row immediately started snapping pictures. When I see him, I know great things are about to happen.

06. The sophistication and elegance of a National concert is never lost on anyone. The hush that comes over the audience when Matt steps on stage never fails to amaze me. It's a magical feeling.

07. I was disappointed by the lack of "Daughters of the Soho Riots" and "About Today" which have become frequent in recent set lists. There were no surprises whatsoever. 

08. Although the band joked that it's the hardest song to perform, "Lemonworld" has never sounded better and gorgeous lemon/lime lighting only added to the eerie feeling of the song.

09. "Conversation 16" was the other highlight of the set for me and has seemingly become an anthem among crowds at recent shows. "Squalor Victoria" and "Mr. November" were also standouts in a louder fashion. Unfortunately no stage diving or running across bars for the drunken Mr. Berninger though.

10. Every concert The National puts on is destined to be great. This one was no exception. It wasn't the all time greatest but I'd see Matt Berninger perform in a McDonald's wearing a Ronald McDonald costume if it meant I got to hear these songs live. They can do no wrong.


All photographs courtesty of ME.

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