Tonight I am off to see Yo La Tengo at Washington D.C.’s 9:30 Club. Even though I have only known and listened to them for about four (or five?) years, they have been a staple of the indie rock community for nearly twenty years. AND(!!?!) they’re one of the top bands on my list I have never seen, so I am looking forward to their eclectic mixture of noise rock and sweet sonophorus melodies.
This made me think two things: 1) What are other people’s lists of bands they are dying to see live, but never have? 2) What are other really long album titles out there? Send your comments to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
UPDATE: Two nights ago, Yo La Tengo proved why they have been one of the most respected band in indie rock for so long. Pulling heavily from their new album, the band had a diverse set of short sweet pop tunes and long fuzzed out noise rock. Right off the bat, they opened ‘The Weakest Part,’ then segued into the epic ‘Story of Yo La Tango’ (misspelling intentional), which stretched out into a slow-building improv section well over 15 minutes long. It normally would have been a set closer of a song, yet the band pulled it out before anyone had even opened their beers.
It’s nice to see a band willing to improvise and stretch their songs and make each show special. When so many bands play their well rehearsed 45 minute sets verbatim, it can get stale and doesn’t really encourage much repeat attendance. Yet Yo La Tengo was obviously comfortable in their own skin, changing up a fan-favourite arrangement and pulling out a nice cover songs, such as the Arthur Lee tune, ‘Luci Baines’ or Velvet Underground’s ‘She’s My Best Friend.’ My only complaint was a short stretch where about four songs in a row were uptempo hard rockers and I was dying for a breather with a more mellow song, but based on the rest of the crowd energy I might have been in the minority on that one. But all in all a great show.