Boom Bip and Interpol at the Agora Ballroom

Let me shoot straight with you. Boom Bip sucks. After hear­ing them play, I wasn’t sur­prised that I’d nev­er heard of them and I ful­ly ex­pect to nev­er hear from them again. In fact, that’d bet­ter hap­pen. Boom Bip [stu­pid name] is one dude, ap­par­ent­ly, and if you took all the band mem­bers and squashed them to­geth­er, you might have one dude who could play one in­stru­ment. The drum­mer beat the same damn rhythm on the high-hat and snare for their set, the bassist played the same two notes on the top two strings on his bass, the lead gui­tarist played the same chord on the bot­tom two strings of his gui­tar the whole time and, by far the worst, was the key­boardist, who had a mo­bile com­mand cen­ter of gad­getry and lap­top­pery, but seemed to on­ly play a mid­dle C in every song. Beat-in­ten­sive in­stru­men­tal noise-rock is bor­ing. Unless you are Ratatat, lyrics are good, moth­er­fuck­ers. I’ve had more fun with cafe­te­ria food than watch­ing Boom Bip. I do not rec­om­mend them.

Interpol could have had the worst show of their ca­reers last night, and no one would have no­ticed, not af­ter Boom Bip [I mean, se­ri­ous­ly, you can’t come up with a bet­ter name than that?]. Full dis­clo­sure: I didn’t like Antics at all, and still love Turn on the Bright Lights. Interpol in con­cert was what I had ex­pect­ed Interpol in con­cert to be like. My friend Phil said that he’d heard they are great live, and if you like your live bands to sound just like they do on their al­bums, Interpol is great live. They set down sol­id lay­ers in their rhythm sec­tion and the vo­cals are fraught enough to over­come any re­dun­dan­cy in the sound [Boom Bip, take note!]. So, Interpol plays like a well-oiled ma­chine. And there­in might be my prob­lem with them. When I hear a band live I like crowd in­ter­ac­tion and a lit­tle bit of im­prov, the lyrics sung a lit­tle bit dif­fer­ent­ly, a gui­tar so­lo now and then; with Interpol it is al­most me­chan­i­cal, they are just com­ing out and do­ing their job, they keep them­selves too tight­ly reined in for me.

I had a pret­ty de­cent time, they played my fa­vorite song of theirs, Specialist, and my third fa­vorite song, Roland, dur­ing their en­core, but didn’t play my sec­ond fa­vorite, Obstacle 2. They, ex­pect­ed­ly, played a bunch of songs from Antics, but I like their ear­li­er stuff, which doesn’t bode well for a band with on­ly two al­bums un­der its belt. The Agora is pret­ty sweet though. This para­graph has three sen­tences and too many com­mas.

Here ends this elit­ist mu­sic re­view, but I had no need to say it twice.