I WAS THERE . . . Tokyo Police Club @ Webster Hall, 2.25.2009

Wednesday night New York welcomed Tokyo Police Club back to town for a sold out show at Webster Hall along with the Born Ruffians and the Harlem Shakes. The show was only the second night of their tour but the band proved quickly that they were up to the task, rolling through a number of their short upbeat tunes like “Juno” and “Your English Is Good” with enthusiasm.

What’s fun about their live show is the subtle variations in the performance of the songs, which on record are often remixed and reworked a number of times. The band was a bit like a poppy, Canadian version of the Ramones a plethora of great tracks that are nearly all around 2-3 minutes live. The crowd was a mixed bunch between young 16-year-old fans using their iphones to grab photos alongside twenty something kids dancing and thirty-year-old hipsters. The stand-outs were some of the more densely melodic songs off their recent album Elephant Shell like “Graves” and “Tessellate” but the band really did a good job keeping it varied and interesting.

One of the highlights was the score of new tracks like “Breakneck Speed” and “Favorite Color.” The most memorable moment was without a doubt the encore as the band stepped back onstage calling the Born Ruffians back out to play a new song, “Spark” which they recently wrote together. The track is really interesting with the merger of TPC’s Dave Monks unique vocal sound pairing up with Born Ruffians singer Luke LaLonde. They closed it out in style inviting the Harlem Shakes out onto the already crowded stage for a classic rendition of the Clash’s “Train In Vain.”

Tim Needles

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