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Wilco tosses a gem at Keyspan Park

July 14, 2009

glenn1Photo taken by Qbertplaya

UPDATE (7/15): You can now download the mp3 or FLAC files of this show from NYCTaper here.

Wilco combined new tunes, old tunes, special guests, sing-a-longs, two encores, guitar duels, gameshow themesongs, a ballpark and a perfect night to create an incredibly tight show last night at Keyspan Park in Coney Island (7/13).  Taking the stage to the perfectly random theme from the Price is Right, Wilco was led by their founder, Jeff Tweedy, who rocked his signature denim-on-denim look all night.  While Tweedy is the band’s de facto frontman, it was guitarist Nels Cline who really shined.  Cline’s guitar-work is something to behold.  He’s technically proficient, but bold and experimental at the same time, playing intricate note patterns followed by big walls of unique sounds.  He dueled with Pat Sansone at the end of the night, and while Pat may have won the battle of rock-star moves, Cline sent him back to the far side of the stage as the clear loser.  A copy of this show is worth getting for this battle alone, Tweedy loved every minute of it.

nels4Photo taken by Qbertplaya

While the set was heavy on songs from their new self-titled album (“Bull Black Nova” being the best), every song they played was well-executed.  I thought the new songs came across much better live than on the album.  The sound from where I was (left field, Nels-side, about 40 feet from the stage) was perfect.  The venue itself is a great place to see a show.  There was room to dance (and I’ve never danced harder at a Wilco show), short bathroom lines all night, plenty of beer vendors walking thru the crowd and the giant neon circle lights that rise from the stadium walls reminding you that you’re in the middle of one of the most curious places anywhere, Coney Island.  The only drawbacks were the lack of any ATM’s (Megs & Ellen, I’ll pay you back Wednesday on the boat,) and the fact that you couldn’t hang with friends who had Bowl seats if you were on the field, and vice versa.  

More review and full setlist below.

tweedy4Photo by Qbertplaya

Other than the guitar duel, there were 2 clear highlights that stood above the rest of this stellar show.  Early on the band played “At Least that’s what you Said,” a song that showcases the two extreme sides of Wilco: the fragile, dark, melancholy lyrics and the big, wailing sound of six guys pushing their respective instruments to 11.  This would be reason #2 to find this bootleg.  Reason #3 was “Spiders (Kidsmoke)” which featured opening act Yo La Tengo as special guests.  All the extra firepower on stage took this already driving, powerful tune to new heights.  As I looked around the crowd, it was clear that everyone’s mind was being blown. Wow.

Jeff Tweedy was in a great mood all night, clearly loving the fact that 12,000 kids came out on a Monday night.  He complimented the crowd on their sex appeal, led the crowd in a sing-a-long of “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” and referenced the fact that Mermaid Avenue (the same name of their 2-album project with Billy Bragg) was only a few blocks from the venue before breaking into their goofiest tune from that record, “Hoodoo Voodoo.”  He also brought up Leslie Feist for their duet from the new album, “You and I.”  While their vocals work well together, it’s not exactly what I’m looking for from Wilco…a little too soft.  Ed Droste (of Grizzly Bear) was then brought up for another Mermaid Avenue tune, “California Stars.”  While Ed didn’t exactly add much other than star-power and maracas, it was the perfect song for such a beautiful night.

feistdroste1Photo by Qbertplaya

What was your favorite moment of the show?  Leave a comment and let me know.

Set list:

Wilco (the song)
I Am Trying to Break Your Heart
Shot in the Arm
At Least That’s What You Said
Bull Black Nova
You Are My Face
One Wing
Handshake Drugs
Deeper Down
Impossible Germany

-Take Me Out to the Ballgame (sung by the crowd after 3 opening words from the band)

Jesus Etc.
Sonny Feeling
I’m Always in Love
Can’t Stand It
Hate it Here
I’m the Man Who Loves You

1st Encore:
Heavy Metal Drummer
You And I (with Leslie Feist)
California Stars (with Leslie Feist & Ed Droste)
You Never Know (with Leslie Feist & Ed Droste)
Spiders (Kidsmoke)
(with Yo La Tengo, Leslie Feist & Ed Droste)

2nd Encore:
The Late Greats
Hoodoo Voodoo
(with Leslie Feist & Ed Droste)


Here’s a pic of the band’s printed out setlist courtesy of NYCTaper.  As you can see, it’s slightly different from what was actually played.



6 Comments leave one →
  1. DeathRo permalink
    July 14, 2009 10:19 am

    Nels Nels Nels.
    Holy Schwanzenstooks.

  2. MA-MACE permalink
    July 14, 2009 1:11 pm

    Spiders rocked…thought the show was over after that! I thought Leslie Feist added a nice feminine touch to the mix…

  3. Pup-pup permalink
    July 14, 2009 1:23 pm

    Nice spinal tap reference

  4. ernesto bordecai permalink
    July 14, 2009 3:05 pm

    dios mio. i just pooped myself when i read the setlist.

  5. Lil Donde permalink
    July 15, 2009 11:01 am

    My pleasure to lend some funds for the night…I’m loaded after all – and so was that show! Awesome night. As Tweedy promised, I felt it on Monday morning and it felt GOOD.

  6. bridge the midge permalink
    July 16, 2009 1:09 pm

    strong show. i’ve been up for days.

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