I’ve seen what must be over a thousand shows in my entire life so far. Some took place in rotten cellars where the stench was so bad you wanted to puke. Some were in huge halls too expensive to buy a drink. Some were in small clubs with a few spectators where we hung out and talked to the bands afterwards. Some were at youth centres with nagging social workers who would show yu the dor if you were drinking a beer. But never in my life have I attended a show like the one yesterday evening. Ladies and gentlemen, The Gaslight Anthem at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
When I was planning the trip to NYC me and my host were thinking about what to do and where to go. So when he told me that the Gaslight Anthem was playing a show in New York we instantly knew we had to build the trip around that date. So he went out and got the tickets in advance. And, actually, although I knew it was taking place at Radio City Music Hall, when you enter the building, it makes your jaw drop down. Radio City Music Hall has the feeling of an opera house. The floor has carpets. Everywhere. The people who work there wear uniforms, just like yu would expect them to at a place like this. There’s two or three balconies (our places where on the second deck). Meaning that place is just huge!
I guess it must have been the strangest audience the people of Radio City Music Hall had to deal with. There were tattooed hardcore kids, mohawk punkrockers, emo brats, older people in their 50s or 60s, you name it, a very strange mixture.
When we found or seats, Rival Schools were already playing and they kind of looked lost on that huge stage. We only got to listen to two songs and the hall wasn’t even half full, but just by looking at the scenery I was stunned. This really was something new.
The changeover was swift and the Gaslight Anthem started playing at around 9.10 pm. A huge banner as a backdrop, but what caught my eye was the FC St Pauli flag which was hanging over Guitar-Alex’s cabinets. I wonder if anyone in the audience knew the meaning behind this. When they started playing the hall was filling up rather quickly and it seems the place was nearly sold out. There were only half of the seats taken where we were sitting, but downstairs it seemed to be packed.
The regular set lasted for about an hour and then they came back again to play another 40 minutes so I don’t believe anyone was frustrated when they left the building. I would have loved to talk to the guys after the show, but this was something different. First up I was tired as hell and second, I don’t think there would have been a chance to find them. So I will settle for just a mail to Benny and tell him he looked good on stage.
Boys, if there’s one band who deserves to play a show like this one, than it’s you. Congratulations.
(Unfortunately no pictures, because you weren’t allowed to take a camera inside.)