Even though I’m Agnostic, there’s no denying that the First Unitarian Church in Philly is home to some of the hottest shows I’ve seen (and played, for that matter). So I was definitely psyched to get a chance to check out Of Montreal there in support of their amazing new album The Sunlandic Twins (check out my recent review).I missed the first two opening acts (being that I’m more punk-tual than punctual) but was able to catch Philly’s own Hail Social. Watching this band play live, it was no surprise that Interpol recently invited Hail Social to open for their US tour.
After Hail Social’s set, the room was hushed in anticipation for Georgia’s own Of Montreal. After the gear was set up and the sound check conducted, the band (in full 60’s psychedelia regalia, not quite Sgt. Pepper but still better than your average vintage-store hipster) crept out onto stage in slow motion. Yes, it wasn’t just the acid kicking in, they actually walked out and strapped on their instruments in slow motion. A roar erupted from the sold-out crowd, and the band kicked right into the first track off their new album, “Requiem for O.M.M.” I bounced up and down and sang along to the upbeat yet melancholy song about lost love.
With the more frequent use of electronic drums and loops on the new material, the drummer was frequently mashing a little box next to his set and then grabbing a guitar or some other instrument. After the opener, Of Montreal went into a short instrumental jam followed by “I was Never Young” and “Wraith Pinned to the Mist and Other Games,” the second and third tracks from The Sunlandic Twins respectively.
Next the band went into some dancefloor-shaking “hits” including “Disconnect the Dots” from Satanic Panic in the Attic and “This Begins Our Alabee” from the new disc. Barnes rotated through several wardrobes throughout the set, donning a very special getup that screamed “Eurotrash” for “Oslo in the Summertime.” Kevin then revealed a white teeshirt that looked as if he had stolen it from a 12-year-old girl and the band kicked out “Forecast Fascist Future” from the new album and a few more old songs before closing with the last track from The Sunlandic Twins, “The Repudiated Immortals.”
Of course the crowd screamed their heads off demanding an encore, and Of Montreal didn’t disappoint. They retook the stage and immediately went into a crowd-pleasing cover of “Alright” by Supergrass. They followed up with “Do Nothing” from Aldhils Arboretum and “You Are An Airplane” from The Bird Who Continues to Eat the Rabbit’s Flower before going into another jam that allowed them to make a slow-motion exit off the stage.
After the show, I checked out the merch table and picked up a copy of the new double LP (three sides of music and a David Barnes etching on the forth) and the single EP for “I Was A Landscape In Your Dream” with a surprising Misfits cover on the B-Side… “Dare” I hint at what song it could be?