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.

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