NSA Record Hundreds of Concert Goers “Chatter”!

Well not really, but in their obsession with “chatter” the dubious organization would have recorded a ton at last night’s Mono/Pelican show at the Black Cat. In what can only be the rudest crowd since the Mum show back in ’04, it seemed a huge majority of the crowd were more interested in themselves than in Mono, this wonderful band from Japan.

Everyone was talking through Mono’s beautiful insturmental pieces which made their quiet guitar and drum orchestrations sound more like Mogwai’s “Young Team”, complete with ‘chatter’ samples, than Mono’s “Are You There?” (which is the album the Mono fans were paying to hear played). Fortunately, unlike Mum who rarely go into decible levels louder than a delicate whisper, Mono songs often swell into long extended noisy climaxes which were so impressive and loud that the world of disrespectful, talkative, jerk-wads dropped away sporadically.

Mono‘s set was a shorter version of their 2005 show in Baltimore (which made #1 on my year end list). This group keep getting better and better, as demonsrated by their new album “Are You There?” and last night’s show. At one point I was thinking that Mono have surpassed Mogwai in perfecting the post-rock tsunami-swell effect, which if is truly the case then the grasshopper has now become the master.

Oddly enough, after Mono’s set, half of the noisy jerks left! I guess they had achieved their cool-points by paying $12 to be seen not listening to Mono and decided to hit the pike.

That exodus stream-lined the crowd for Pelican nicely, who put on a stunner of a set to a crowd who were mightily into it.

Pelican‘s set was book-ended by two perfect songs. The first being a barn-burner power piece that had to be heard to believe. It was clear right out of the gate that Pelican were here to blow us away. Pelican are an endurance band, their songs are punishing in a long-trek sans shoes through snowy Rockies kind-of-way. Their last song was equally powerful, but not as in-your-face as they relied on sophisticated guitar sonics, stretching their sound from power to soul-tingling beauty. It’s always nice to see a guitarist going at his strings with a cello bow, the sign of a real guitar-geek and sonic-explorer.

It would be funny if the NSA had been recording last night’s show. I can imagine two dudes in a van listening in with head-phones.

Mono begins: Agent A says to Agent B “Listen to that crowd chatter, we’re getting a gold mine of intelligence here!”.

Mono finishes in a blaze of glory: Agent B yanks off his head-phones and shouts “Jesus that’s Loud!”

Pelican begins: Agent A spits out his coffee in shock!

Pelican ends: Agent B is whimpering on the floor in a helpless pool, Agent A is deaf.

2 Comments so far

  1. chris (unregistered) on May 13th, 2006 @ 12:26 pm

    I don’t know how much “intelligence” the NSA would have picked up, all I could hear out of the chatter was boring talk about nothing much. Granted it’s a show and besides commenting on the music there’s probably not going to be any real topical discussions or exploration of emotional depth, but if these folks wanted to talk so damn badly, they should have been doing it before or after the show rather than destroying all of the subtleties that Mono brings to the table.

  2. Medusa (unregistered) on May 15th, 2006 @ 5:35 pm

    I remember the show I saw of The Devlins at Iota Cafe back in January 2003. Lots of people were talking during that one. Even the band commented on it. Shame.

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