[about four hours ago] I’m writing this from atop the toilet seat as to not piss off my roommate too much.
I asked for Franz Ferdinand tickets from a friend (who could get me Franz Ferdinand tickets) but had waited until almost the last minute for notice that there were tickets waiting for us (which I didn’t receive) before I had to leave for dinner and the show. “Honey”:http://slapchar.blogspot.com/ had already bought GA tickets for three of us (herself, “Yetta”:http://yetta1.blogspot.com/, and myself) but I was hoping to get two pairs of tickets so Diana could come too. Despite thinking that Diana wouldn’t get in due to bad karma (she’s been through a series of failed “guest list” attempts), we went to Madison Square Garden anyway, after a hurried dinner at Zen Palate.
There was still hope. We went to the ticket booth after going through the most incomplete bag check ever (as in, one step above not checking bags at all) where I made a last attempt at getting tickets (the show wasn’t sold out, but it almost was).
“Is there a guestlist?”
“…can I see if I’m on it?”
With fingers crossed, I watched as from the cubby holes behind the ticket booth appeared an envelope with my name on it. Thank. God.
There were two tickets in it. I had three friends with me. Hm.
“Okay, everyone…um, see if you’re on the list.”
Yetta was the other name on the list, thus giving us four tickets.
“Oh, but what are the seats?”
They were…seats. Not GA. But was I going to complain? Hell no! Franz Ferdinand is worth paying money for but here I was with not very good seats…but _free_ not very good seats.
“What’s this paper in the envelope?”
“Um…’Your name is on the list for tonight’s after part at: The Tribeca Grand Hotel.'”
“Robyn. We’re going. You’re not getting out of that.”
For those who don’t know, I’m not the party-type. I’m the antithesis to whomever would be the party type. All four of us could bound our non-party-type ness into a giant bouncy ball that could kill millions of children. Or something.
Honey and Yetta had GA tickets they bought before so I sat in the seated area with Diana. However, Honey had gotten three GA tickets with the assumption that I would take one. Later I found out that Honey gave the other ticket away for free to a needy fan who asked her how much GA tickets cost (even though the show wasn’t sold out, the GA tickets were sold out). It was good karma; Honey and Yetta had tried to sell some tickets before the show, almost getting arrested in the process. I don’t know about you but out of all the concerts I’ve seen, I’ve NEVER seen scalpers get arrested. Maybe it only happens around MSG. Anyway, I can’t imagine how scared they felt at that time; I think I would’ve puked some major organ.
On to the concert. Looking at my watch around 7:30, I thought, “Eh, I don’t think it’s going to start soon.” Right after I said that (seriously), the lights dimmed and Cut Copy came out. Damn, that’s some punctuality, eerily so. Cut Copy were awesome but sadly, played to a very empty theater. No, not totally empty, but you could hear their dance beats (which should’ve elicited more movement out of the pit audience) echo in that “empty roller skating rink” way (I don’t know why but that’s the only comparison I could come up with). For once, here was an opener that I thought was awesome but played a paltry 20-25 minutes to a crowd that should’ve been larger. Dammit.
Next opener, TV on the Radio, totally…lost me. I know there are fans out there, but I’m certainly not one. Despite the loudness of the music, I actually wanted to fall asleep. Am I missing something? It’s not like they were really bad; I just didn’t get it. I longed for…Cut Copy.
Our row (K, in section 304) was mainly empty so four of us on the end scooted inward for a better view. When Franz Ferdinand took the stage, which was set up with platforms for the drums and keyboard and whose background was 4 three-sided panels that rotated between the FF logo, the new FF album cover, and the band members’ portraits, a wave of “people standing up” (thank god; can you imagine sitting during an FF show?) spread through the audience. You must stand. Yes.
They started with “Jacqueline” and ended with “This Fire”. In between, they played…a lot of stuff. Even from my view, from which I could make our the band’s general movement on toothpick legs, I was blown away. The sound is a bit funky in the MSG theater but it didn’t kill my eardrums. Being closer would’ve been great but I, someone who rarely shows any inkling of dancing ability, kind of danced. _Kind of._ The first time I saw FF, I wasn’t a fan; afterwards, with the realization, “Holy shit, they made me feel like dancing,” I was won over.
So yeah. Great. Stuff. The audience obviously responded best to songs from the first album but the new songs sounded great too. I was happy to hear “This Boy” and some other new songs I can’t remember right now. “Take Me Out” got a huge response, no surprise…cos it’s awesome. Yup. My reason for most things: “Cos it’s awesome.” At the end, three guys were playing the drum set at the same time. Why? Cos it’s awesome. Someone probably has a setlist, so I won’t try to guess what was played.
Not that it’s very important, but Alex and Nick wore black pants and red shirts while Bob wore all black and Paul wore black pants with a white shirt and black tie. YOU JUST HAD TO KNOW! Now you can dress up as them for Halloween. It helps if you’re really tall and skinny and male.
So. I was happy. However, most memories of the night come from the after party. I could write a whole other entry about that, but I’ll sum up bits of it here.
First off, I never knew the Tribeca Grand Hotel was where it…is. I’ve passed it many times, thinking it was just a nice building. Where nothing happened. (I passed it a lot in the daytime.) It was obviously different tonight since there was a line around the side of the hotel.
We stood in it for a while. It got colder. I didn’t notice how cold it was getting. Mittens would’ve been nice.
While loads of people went strait in from the front entrance (along with, ye know, people who actually stay at the hotel), we waited for what felt like a long time with one pair of women in front of us. At some point, they came back with a fresh batch of neon-pink wristbands. And now…my turn to sound like a moron to the doorman.
“Which guestlist are you on?”
“Uh…” Shit if I know. “I don’t know, what are they?”
“There’s a band list, hotel list, label list…”
“I guess it’s the label list? I don’t think it’s the other ones.”
Obviously, I wasn’t staying at the hotel and my first thought was, “Why would I be on the band list?” My second thought should’ve been “Why would I be on the label list?” There’s no reason. Alas, I think slowly. I told him my name and waited.
“Are you really Robyn Lee?”
My first thought was, “Huh?” What I actually said was a confused, “Yeeeaaah…?”
“You’re on the band list. You should know that.”
Well…that’s true, but I didn’t. By process of elimination, I should’ve figured that out. But you know, I don’t know why I’m in college with such a faulty brain and lack of logic, yet here I am (still sitting on the toilet, if you’re wondering).
We all got in and glared at the dimly lit posh surroundings. Pretty. And dim.
We went downstairs to the lounge-thinger and awkwardly stood by blaring speakers and a tiny mosh-pit to the side of the stage for a long time until “Sons and Daughters”:http://www.sonsanddaughtersloveyou.com/ came out to play. Yetta found out that they were asked to open for FF but couldn’t do it…but they could play the after party, so they did. Although I’ve heard of them, I’ve never heard them actually play.
They’re awesome. I need more. Despite that it was 1 AM and I had been on the brink of falling asleep (have you noticed that this happens often?), their energy and, you know, many decibels, won the crowd. The lead singer had a unique gait. …Yes, I said gait. You either know what I’m talking about or you don’t, because I obviously need to increase my vocabulary.
We only stayed for two songs since by that time, it was getting pretty late (they started at 1 AM). While exiting the big crowded room of drunk people, we passed a couch stuffed with people making out that was straight out of a post-prom party scene from a bad high school movie; it was odd. Amusing.
We hung around the floor, wondering when we’d leave. During the “hanging around,” Bob Hardy came out and Yetta and Honey got photos with him. I’ve decided after seeing him that up close that Bob is one of the most adorable people ever. Ever. I was unprepared for such brain cell destroying-cuteness.
Diana’s from Brooklyn (the far part) so she in particular had to get going.
“Okay guys, I’m gonna go now…”
“NOOO!” I proclaimed, clinging to Diana’s shoulders. Or maybe not, but we prevented her from leaving. It was a good thing too, because she ended up meeting Paul Banks. Hard to miss in his black knit cap with bits of his straight blond hair sticking out, Diana, Yetta, and Honey got photos taken with him. The only strange thing perhaps was that he insisted on taking the photos. Maybe he likes to be in control of the camera? Here’s the result of Paul’s self portrait-age, which didn’t come out too well (hence, why I don’t think Diana would mind you seeing it) because Diana’s camera isn’t made to do arm-length focusing.
A while later as we waited on a super comfty oval cushion thinger that I really wish I had in my house, we saw Daniel Kessler pass by towards the bathroom. We had seen him before but didn’t actually …say anything. The party probably wasn’t the time or place to start approaching musicians you admire, but whatever. We didn’t really fit in anyway.
Diana got a hilarious photo with Dan, who we regarded as “moody.” The photo is hilarious because on the left you have Dan, then a big gap, and then Diana. But in that gap, there’s this super-smiling face of a woman standing farther back (probably oblivious to what was going on), perfectly positioned in the middle.
…okay, I’m done. I ended up staying there until 2:30 (seeing lots of drunk people hobble out over the night…keep in mind, I’m a college student and I’ve never remotely seen that many drunk people before) and catching a cab (for the first time in my life) to go back to my dorm, which took maybe five minutes.
…dude, this night was so weird. And great. I have so many people to thank, but now it’s time for sleep.
— post nap update —
I found out that after I left, Honey and Yetta went back inside the lounge-y place and met Paul since he was…DJ-ing. I’m not surprised, although my uncanny ability to miss things when such things are almost presented right in front of me (in dim lighting) is starting to disturb me.
— link update —
There are lots of other reviews and stuff online. CLICKY:
* lots of comments at brooklyn vegan
* Associated Press photos
* New York Times
* New York Post (I don’t feel like commenting too much on this review but in response to, “In concert, the band’s bloodlessness translated into an audience that lost a little more enthusiasm with each row farther from the stage” I’ll just say that from where I was sitting, the fans were doing very well.)
* Fake Century
* Novela Urbana
* Last Night’s Party’s photos
* joannablack’s review, photos, and setlist @ FF LJ community
* the_lonelysound’s photos @ FF LJ community
* LRobyn’s photos at flickr
* “Honey’s blog”:http://slapchar.blogspot.com/2005/10/not-even-jail.html
…okay, that’s it.