They Might Be Giants at the Beaumont Club, 23 May 2008

Any conversation about They Might Be Giants starts for me with a memory of seeing them with Tim, Rebecca, JT, and Bluebird of Friendliness knows who else six or seven years ago at the old Royal Grove in Lincoln, NE.
It was a strip club.

Not during TMBG, though!  The venue regularly held rock shows, then clear everybody out after the music and switch over.

It was the James K. Polk tour, complete with light show, confetti, bunting and Polk banners.  The Band of Dans killed.  Linnell gave me a masters class in surliness, while Flansburgh rocked. out. on. the Telecaster, lifting it high for anything remotely resembling a big riff, roaming the stage with his wireless mic and stand, and tearing into his background vocals with an enthusiasm usually reserved for the showiest of show choir members.

Happily, not too much has changed.

Jill, Doug, and I were thoroughly rocked by the Giants’ set Friday night.

Kudos to the Beaumont for starting yet another show on time; this is becoming quite the habit over there.  And the sound was solid, with the exception that Flansburgh’s vocals were a little buried.

TMBG’s current incarnation is a stripped-down, loose outfit that reminds me of nothing so much as early Elvis Costello.  Their set spanned their entire career, including the expected highlights from “Flood” and a few selections from their recent children’s albums (“Seven”).  Flansburgh joked (At least I think he was joking) that the band doesn’t rehearse for their children’s gigs (they had one Saturday) except for onstage at their adult shows.

Given my history with the band, hearing the phrase “adult shows” from the stage was extra-special.

TMBG gave us a few surprises, including a masterful acoustic guitar introduction to “Istanbul,” a noisy, deconstructed interlude in the middle of “Particle Man,” Flansburgh introducing the members of the band…  twice…  and a pleasantly ramshackle version of “Fingertips.”

If you’ve ever been a fan of the band, or think you might become one, catch them on tour.  They don’t disappoint. -h

8 thoughts on “They Might Be Giants at the Beaumont Club, 23 May 2008”

  1. “…seeing them with Tim, Rebecca, JT, and Bluebird of Friendliness knows who else six or seven years ago at the old Royal Grove in Lincoln, NE.”

    IT WAS ME AT THAT SHOW YOU GREASY SON OF A BATCH! We just took Tim’s CAR, remember? You, me, Rebeccster, and the JT-Meister. You invited me last minute, and I ACCEPT.

    Rob met us there, and then we went to Perkins afterwards to eat, and Rob was wearing a shirt with GW Bush on it that said “Not MY President,” and you guys were arguing over the merits of voting for Nader.

    Rob: “You should have voted for Gore, because he actually had a chance of winning the election.”

    Howie: “Why would I vote for someone I don’t agree with politically?”

    C0R-3, FTW! Pew pew pew!

  2. Don’t forget someone’s ticket got locked in the car during the excitement of Rob parking next to us, and then breaking in to Tim’s car to get it out in time for the show.

    I’ve seen them once since, but it wasn’t as good as the show at the strip club. I mean, it was a strip club not being a strip club. Couldn’t beat that with a stick.

    I’ll rock out to them again sometime (listened to most of my collection of TMBG last week, good thing I had some time on my hands). Right now I’m saving up for the Coldplay tour this summer. I might have to hit them twice! But I’m always on the lookout for a cheap, awesome TMBG show.

  3. Cory, you’re right! I *knew* you were there because of the locked car/ticket escapade, but I couldn’t remember if you went to the show or if we called you in special. SORRY, BRO!!!!!!!!!!!!111111111111

    I like that you’re accepting in the present tense, though.

    And I’ve TOTALLY come around to Rob’s sense of practicality (not that it mattered in Nebraska…)

    JT, report back to us on the Coldplay tour! I’d love to you to do a post – you can email to me, or I can make you a WordPress account, whatever you prefer!


  4. Was I the person who locked my ticket in the car? I would not put it past myself. I am the king of making things difficult.

  5. I had this conversation with Becca a few months ago, and she claims it wasn’t her. I know it wasn’t me, so that leaves one of you. (Or she’s lying/misremembering…since I seem to recall that it was her…) Not that it really matters. Cory had the mad skillz to break in to the car without the use of a large brick.

    I did get to see Coldplay in Denver a few years ago, and we were in the fifth row (expensive tickets!!! Totally worth it!!!!!!). Fiona Apple opened, and seemed somewhat possessed on stage, but good enough. Coldplay did every song I wanted to hear and rocked my face off. Just as simple as that.

    Whichever show we end up going to this time, I’ll whip something up and send it along to you.

    I still think my vote for Nader was totally worth it, since that’s who I believed in at the time. Following that line of thinking, my record for picking winners isn’t that great. Let’s hope Obama turns that around this time!

  6. GUYZ, IT WAS ME!!!!111 who locked his ticket in the car. Because I drove, and it was an unfamiliar car (Tim’s), so somehow in the act of getting out, locking the door… do you remember in “22 Short Films About Springfield” when Homer walks out of the store with a couple bags of groceries and Maggie, sees a newspaper he wants to buy, shuffles everything around reaching in his pockets, and ends up with the paper and groceries outside and Maggie in the newspaper vending box?

    It was like that.

  7. Deadbeat dad beat dead is like a palindrome.

    like that TMBG song “I Palindrome I”

    full circle, y’all.

    and that *was* an awesome show. in discussing the show with doug later, i found out that what i took as him ‘totally rocking out’ may have actually been ‘too drunk to keep both feet planted on the ground without tipping over’. but i still think he had a good time.

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