Thursday, May 13, 2010

OK Go brings a party to Lincoln Theatre

Viral video superstars OK Go hit the Lincoln Theatre on Tuesday night, and they hit it hard. Even if you're only a casual OK Go fan, their live show is undeniably fun.

Robert Francis opened the show, playing a short yet good set. The Los Angeles native seemed a bit baffled by the crowd's warmth, but played well nonetheless. Though he announced that he would be back in Raleigh next month, he currently has no dates listed for the area.

Next came Brooklyn trio Earl Greyhound, who were a refreshing surprise. Unexpectedly, the band was nothing like OK Go's catchy indie pop rock. The only words that come close to describing them accurately is a blend of hard rock, jazz, and funk. Unfortunately, the vocals were often drowned in the music, but Earl Greyhound was wonderfully fresh in their style.

Finally, OK Go hit the stage. They opened with "Invincible," during which a small cannon showered the crowd with confetti, and continued to go off at fairly regular intervals throughout the show. As the venue cleared out, the road crew was literally getting out leaf blowers to clear the stage of the huge masses of confetti that blanketed everything.

The group played a game of musical hopscotch for an hour and a half, taking songs from most of their catalog rather than relying on their most recent release, Of the Colour of the Blue Sky. Bassist Tim Nordwind even challenged the crowd to a sing-along on the chorus on "This Too Shall Pass". Even the crowd got involved with the song selecting per the band's request, helping the group settle on a cover of The Pixies' "Debaser."

The show took an interesting twist when frontman Damian Kulash proclaimed that all of the sinners in the crowd needed purifying. The best way to do this, he said, was with the instrument that God Himself had created: handbells. Though it took a few attempts, he finally quieted the excited crowd by shouting, "Seriously, guys, this is fucking church time, so shut the fuck up!" They obliged as he and the rest of the band performed a unique yet lovely version of "What to Do."

Later in the show, a fan shouted out a marriage proposal, to which Kulash politely replied, "I'm not for sale, but darling, I'll come to you." He then grabbed one of the microphones and an acoustic guitar and made his way to a small platform to perform a quick yet sweet song. He also hopped up on an amp at one point to photograph the entire crowd (above), claiming that the band hoped to facilitate a marriage between two OK Go fans via people tagging each other on Facebook.

The whole show was indeed a party, one full of upbeat, energetic music and people who very clearly love their jobs. If the opportunity to catch an OK Go show ever arises, take advantage of it. You won't be disappointed.

[photo via OK Go's Facebook page]

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