Mar 15, 2014

Yo La Tengo @ Sydney Opera House

Yo La Tengo have been around forever. Fact. Yo La Tengo are an American marvel. Fact. Yo La Tengo are pretty great. Fact. Thursday night I got to see them again at the Sydney Opera House. It was an absolute pleasure. This set was a bit different though. Split into two halves. Quiet and loud. The quiet set was just Ira, James and Georgia huddled at the front of the stage. Mainly with Ira and James playing acoustic guitars. Georgia just on a snare drum. A couple of songs on piano. On a few songs Ira would switch to electric guitar. But it was all quiet and subdued. Allowing the songs of beauty to shine. Gorgeous melodies and varied guitar tones. A real delight. Especially the opening song "Ohm" and the truly majestic "Cornelia And Jane" with Georgia shining on lead vocal. This band's songs are so varied, defying any genre or category. It always make a live experience a great exercise for the ears.

After a 20 minute interval the band returned to give it to us loud. And loud it was. The first set managed to draw mainly on their 2013 album in "Fade", but this set was a stroll through their enormous catalogue. Songs were turned up and twisted and turned and elongated. Jam sessions were breaking out everywhere. It was certainly very impressive although I would say I enjoyed the quiet set a little more. After rapturous applause Yo La Tengo returned for a short encore with the last two songs being beautiful renditions that were mellow and sublime. Georgia led the way with "Tom Courtenay" and closing song "Griselda" was a sheer delight. Yo La Tengo might never make big waves in the music scene, but rest assured they are truly essential and always a pleasure to see live. 

Set List
Is That Enough
Nothing To Hide
The Point Of It
Cornelia And Jane
I'll Be Around
Big Day Coming

Stupid Things
Moby Octopad
Little Eyes
Super Kiwi
Stockholm Syndrome
Before We Run
False Alarm
From A Motel 6
Pass The Hatchet, I Think I'm Goodkind

Slow Down
Tom Courtenay


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