Polyphonic Spree - Bowery Ballroom - 7/10/13
Random notebook dump: "New stuff = SPACE!" So, the visual cues were helpful: instead of the explosion of rainbows washing the stage with light, the new songs off of Polyphonic Spree's forthcoming record received the galactic treatment. The lights went low, lasers started beaming out all over the place, starry strobes did their thing and the new stuff--with a sonic aesthetic to match the Planetarium-worthy spectacle unfolding before us--took us on a bit of a time warp. Instead of bringing us back to the early Aughts with the Polyphonic Spree songs we've known and loved/scratched our heads over, we were beamed up to the future, where synths and soundboards are favored just as heavily as trumpets and cellos and harps.
Overheard: "Pop goes the Weasel." 10+ to one of the 912 trumpeters employed by the Polyphonic Spree who thought to do a sad, weebly little "POP!" when someone in the crowd stomped on a balloon. Given that these guys hand out giant white balloons to their audience members and require them to blow them up I'm sure the opportunity's presented itself before, but still, comedic timing #FTW.
Also, #benwillwin: Before ripping it open and emerging from it with a swelling din behind him, DeLaughter tagged "#BENWILLWIN!" on a giant white sheet that had been rigged before the lights went down. The hashtag refers to School of Seven Bells' Ben Curtis, who the band has been actively raising funds for since he was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year. DeLaughter closed the night by bringing up Curtis' treatment again, urging folks to use the hashtag, raise awareness and donate if they can. Cancer's a horrible, expensive bitch. You know what's not? Empathy, kindness and the kind of support that spans across stages as a community uses its powers for good to help out a friend in need.