Me & Sarie, pre-show. They kept playing this TV spot on loop and I just felt like they should have just played The Smiths or something, which is what they were doing earlier in the evening, anyway. BUT WHATEVER. That’s such a minor thing.
Anyway. For all intents and purposes, I will refer to myself as a Phoenix semi-fan. It’s just not a part of my life the way that some bands have been. This is a group that I liked having around and listening to occasionally, but as you all know, I am a grade A wallower and I frequent the songs with more sad bastard-y and stay-in-bed coziness leanings than the ones that make you dance. That’s just how I’ve always been, but I like to break out my metaphorical dancing shoes every once in a while and listen to people like Phoenix.
I prepared for a phone interview with Phoenix’s Deck d’Arcy last month by immersing myself in their current album. Bankrupt! itself has 10 songs, but alongside that, they released a “deluxe album,” where they basically rid themselves of all their drafts and false starts with the intention of starting with a blank slate for their next album. The deluxe volume has 71 songs with tracks ranging from 4 seconds to a full 3 minutes.
What is the purpose of that story? Well, the more I read about them, the more I admired them as people and as people within the construct of being in a band together. Their whole story is so cool, drama-free, and just really all about music and friendship, as corny as that sounds. So, I started paying more attention to their music, and I started to appreciate it more, too.
Oh, you can read the interview here.
In a few words: the Phoenix show was amazing. I mean, if you are friends with people who were there (or, if you had been there yourself), you’d know how fun it was. There were a few production bumps along the way (more on that later), but on the whole, it might have been the funnest one I’ve been to in a while. Thomas Mars, Branco and Christian went so freaking close to the crowd a few times, and Thomas finally went down and around the whole area. When he was trying to get back to the stage, I got to help him get there! I know that’s such a dumb thing to be proud of, but whatever. I was thrilled.
OK, so one of the hiccups (but to my mind, it isn’t really) was the selling of tickets with assigned seats. I don’t think I’ve watched anything in this venue before, but I assumed that the seats would be bolted to the floor. Turns out, they were Monobloc chairs that ended up getting stacked up when people rushed to the front. I’m not dumb, so I rushed towards the front, also. I think we ended up in Row D/E but we originally were seated in K? It was sooo stressful. People who wanted to abide by the seating arrangement were not happy. And I get it. However, I also did not expect people to stay in their seats. It’s a Phoenix show. When did anyone ever stay put at a Phoenix show? Thomas made people GO ON STAGE in Singapore. So that’s all I have to say about that.
The thing is, it’s hard to hate on stuff when THIS MAGIC is happening in front of your face. Everyone was singing along and dancing and it pisses me off when people find faults in stuff that’s easy to brush off and deal with. I’ll stop here because I don’t want to get flamed~ Let’s focus on good things!
I have to say that the best part of seeing foreign artists like Phoenix perform here is the look of fucking wonder on their faces when they play their first song and whole crowd knows the words from start to end. It’s such a great freaking moment, and it just makes the whole ordeal of waiting and waiting and straining my neck and standing so worth it.
The other awesome thing about the Phoenix show was the light and the visuals. I don’t think the Bloc Party light show was topped, but I love that they play with aesthetics and space with all of the graphic treatment. I think my favorite one was when they were playing Love Like a Sunset. So beautiful.
I’m astounded and so happy that they played this, because looking at the setlists now, it seems like they don’t usually play it.
This was such a missed opportunity, though, because at some point the sound was just bad and completely took away from the moment. I thought it was cute that brothers Branco/Laurent and Christian were having a music conversation from the opposite ends of the stage, though:
Thomas Mars is such a QT.
Anyway, that’s that. I hope you enjoyed my pictures! I didn’t end up taking a lot because I realized I was bad at band photography~ but like a normal person, I like having these to remember the time so I took a few. :)
Here is the setlist, taken from setlist.fm:
- Long Distance Call
- Too Young
- The Real Thing
- Trying to Be Cool / Drakkar Noir / Chloroform
- Run Run Run
- Consolation Prizes
- Love Like a Sunset
- S.O.S. in Bel Air
- If I Ever Feel Better
I mean, look at that set. We had such a good show.