Yo La Tengo at First Avenue, 2/4/13

Categories: Last Night

After a time machine trip back to "Lewis," Kaplan got serious and said the band would be remiss to not toast the Troggs' frontman Reg Presley, whose passing was announced earlier that day. Doing so, they first broke out a Condo Fucks rocker "With a Girl Like You" (originally recorded by the Troggs) and then brought up a couple friends to play one one of "the dwindling number of songs we've never played, the Troggs' classic hit "Wild Thing." It was equal parts raw and reverent.
Photos by Erik Hess
And though they could've called it a night, two more acoustic Fakebook cover tunes, "Tried So Hard" and "Griselda" came for the second encore. Even with a slightly diminished crowd, these final moments felt as powerful as any of the voracious melodies of earlier in the night. With fragility and grace, Kaplan and Hubley shared the vocals with love for the songs' original creators. And leaving us with the image of an old lady moon was about perfect. "We were really hoping that the president was gonna come tonight," Kaplan said wryly before they left the stage. "But you've been so nice that we don't even miss him."

Critic's Notebook

Overheard: "Yo La Tengo's been doing this for my whole life." "You probably wouldn't like Die Antwoord." "I think the singer from Fun. was wearing a basketball jersey, but I don't really remember."

The Crowd: Quiet, reverent, and bespectacled.

Personal Bias: Ira Kaplan gives a great interview, and he said nice things about it after the fact. Also, And Then Nothing Turned Itself Inside-Out is in my top five.

Set 1:
Two Trains
Did I Tell You
The Point Of It
Cornelia And Jane
I'll Be Around
Tom Courtenay
Black Flowers

Set 2:
Stupid Things
Today Is The Day
Moby Octopad
Is That Enough
Autumn Sweater
Big Day Coming
Before We Run
From A Motel 6
Pass The Hatchet, I Think I'm Goodkind

Cherry Chapstick
With A Girl Like You (Condo Fucks)
Wild Thing (The Troggs)

2nd Encore:
Tried So Hard (Gene Clark)
Griselda (Holy Modal Rounders)

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