Thursday, June 06, 2013

The National @ Barclays Center

The National; Youth Lagoon
@ Barclays Center
Brooklyn, NY - June 5, 2013

The "weirdness" of seeing this band in such an enormous venue was mitigated by the rememberance, upon their taking the stage, of when they opened for R.E.M. at the Garden. But headlining is still a different story. Especially in the context of having seen them at the neighborhood bar a couple of weeks ago. But the gang took to it just fine. In the spectre of this monstrous venue in this upheaveled neighborhood in this complicated borough of Brooklyn, if any band can handle it, it's the National. If there is any band of neo Brooklynites who've earned a slice of L&B Spumoni Gardens...heyyyyy (save a few for the Hold Steady and some others).

Playing much of Trouble Will Find Me along with High Violet and Boxer, the National may have pivoted themselves as a band bent on moving on. But with "Abel" and "Mr. November" still the landmarks of the set, the thread has held. "Demons" couldn't have happened without Alligator. When the show began, I remarked to a trusted soul "well one thing's for sure, we've lost Berninger runnin' through the crowd". Well I was wrong. And a crowd never more obliged a beloved mad man (me or Berninger?). So no matter what, even in this pinnacle of achievement with its terrible acoustics, some things are to be counted on.

Some Youth Lagoon songs are fine. But for the most part...Brother put a little pep in it.


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