First of all, getting into the city last night was way too easy. The drive from the office up to Hoboken during rush hour took an unfathomable 50 minutes, which is even less than Google says it should take with no traffic–their with-traffic estimate was 82 minutes, but I wasn’t expecting anything less than 90. I guess a lot of people took off of work for a four-day weekend. No complaints. Then, in Hoboken, there was available parking all over the place, my only mistake was taking the first spot I saw. Finally, there was a PATH train sitting there waiting for us and my MetroCard already had money on it. Wins all around.
Now, She & Him…were alright. Not great, not bad, just alright. I think I would say that the first time I saw them was better. To be fair, it wasn’t entirely their fault. The sound was rather inconsistent, sometimes too much on the high-end, sometimes way too much on the low-end. Of all the shows I’ve ever attended at Terminal 5, this had the worst sound by far. On top of that, Zooey’s keyboard wasn’t in tune and this seriously frazzled her. On no less than three occasions, the band started to play a song only to stop a few seconds in for Zooey to try to figure out a way to play it with her keyboard.
The set was long, an hour and a half including the encore. Normally, that would be quite a bit more than I would like to see from a band, but it didn’t feel long at all. When M Ward and Zooey left the stage after the regular set, I looked down at my phone expecting it to only be 9:45ish (they went on promptly at 9), but I was surprised to see that it was already ten after ten. Those 90 minutes a pretty solid collection of almost everything the band has to offer across both volumes. 24 songs, to be exact. They included a few covers, as should probably be expected, and even played an M Ward song which was pretty sweet. In the end, there was nothing left that I wanted and didn’t get. (The setlist is at the bottom of this post).
Oddly, Zooey seemed a little out of her element on stage. Maybe it was just that she was thrown off by the keyboard problems, but she seemed to have to keep reminding herself to smile and look like she was having fun. At one point, she seemed somewhat annoyed with the crowd taking pictures and asked everyone to turn their flashes off. Apparently, there was a strict no pictures policy for the night even though when I had called the venue earlier in the afternoon, I was told that point and shoots were okay. Zooey seemed to not care that pictures were being taken and claimed that the flashes ruined the vibe, but also tried to frame it as a helpful advice that the pictures would come out better without a flash (which is true). I don’t know, it did feel a little bitchy which is very disappointing to someone with a crush on her as large as mine (you already know all about that, I’m sure). All around, it just seemed like she was having an off night, though her voice sounded right on throughout the show.
Sorry for the crappy picture above, it was the best I could get with my iPhone 4 from where I was. Even with the improved camera, there’s only so much you can do from halfway back at a venue the size of Terminal 5 with dim lighting throughout the entire set.
1. Change Is Hard
2. I Thought I Saw Your Face Today
3. I Was Made For You
4. Black Hole
6. Lingering Still
7. Me and You
8. Take It Back
10. Riding In My Car
11. Over It Over Again
12. You Really Got a Hold on Me
13. Brand New Shoes
14. You Turn Me On, I’m a Radio (Joni Mitchell cover)
15. Sentimental Heart
16. Rave On! (Buddy Holly cover)
17. Gonna Get Along Without You Now
18. In the Sun
19. Don’t Look Back
20. This Is Not a Test
21. Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?
22. Magic Trick (M. Ward cover)
23. Fools Rush In (Ricky Nelson cover)
24. I Put a Spell on You (Nina Simone cover)