Maximo Park @ Webster Hall, 9/13/12

Maximo Park is one of Britain’s first indie rock acts I followed, having latched on to them around 2007’s Our Earthly Pleasures. Coincidentally, that’s the last time they played in New York City. This time they are touring in support of their fourth album, The National Health. Given that length of time and the strength of their new album, it was disappointing how badly the show undersold; I’ve never seen Webster Hall so empty.

There were two support acts tonight, the first of which was Stagnant Pools. Doors were bumped up an hour, so I actually missed them play. Fortunately, I had caught them earlier this summer opening for Akron/Family and found them pretty enjoyable as a shoegaze duo. They’re really doing no favors for themselves with such an unappealing band name though.

I arrived in time for Zambri, an electropop outfit featuring two sisters as vocalists. One of them had a contraption of three microphones duct taped together to sing, firmly planting them in the weird category. That and their general oddness kept my attention. They’ve got some potential, but for now I’ll keep my ears tuned to Purity Ring.

Webster Hall’s stage was almost cleared entirely for the main event. It was clear when they took the stage that their snappily dressed frontman, Paul Smith, has a serious appetite for dance. Blink once and you could find him on the other side of the stage. Maximo Park live practically becomes a one man show. It’s for the better in this case, as he’s an inspiring emcee.

Their live set hit plenty of highs throughout the band’s catalog, and featured plenty of favorites from their first release, Apply Some Pressure, including its title track as set closer. The fans who did stop by were definitely die-hard, bringing enough good vibes and enthusiasm to match some sell-outs I’ve seen here.

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About John Harrison

John Harrison is a music afficionado and web developer in Hoboken, New Jersey.
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