c is currently dancing her socks off in the middle of the country to Mumford & Sons as part of their Gentlemen of the Road series. Not being there has put me in a Mumford mood and while watching a dozen, or maybe, eh, twenty-three videos of their performances, I remembered that I FORGOT TO WRITE ABOUT THE TIME I SAW THEM LIVE LAST MONTH. Some jammer I am, right? c will have a debriefing of tonight’s performance by noon tomorrow. Here is mine…a month overdue…
When Mumford & Sons come to NYC/NJ/Metro-area, they do so in style. Not the signature tweed vest, flannel, bowler hat kind of style, but the we’re-going-to-perform-sold-out-shows-in-the-vaguest-venues-during-ominous-weather-that-will-make-headlines-in-the-newspapers kind of style. Remember Pier A in Hoboken last year? On August 28, 2013, the quartet did it again. They revitalized Forest Hills Stadium, a tennis court with amphitheater seating that magically held 17,000. The venue was frequented by The Stones, Joan Baez, and The Beatles during the ’70s and until the British invaded again this August, the stadium had not hosted a concert since 1997. Don’t call it a comeback.
Getting off the LIRR at Forest Hills was like walking into Magic Kingdom after a curious ride on the Monorail at Disney World. Roads were adorned with M&S logos; streets were shut down and packed with blissful twenty-somethings patiently (yes, patiently in NYC) waiting to enter the Romanesque site. After receiving tennis sweatbands as souvenirs, the sold out crowd hopped on line to buy craft beers, artisan pizzas, and probably turkey legs and/or frozen lemonade. Unfortunately, the Gentlemen of the Road (who should reconsider the lottery system for ticket sales) and the Bowery Presents realized far too late in the game the “growing pains” of the night’s dynamic. Refunds were offered to anyone who did not enjoy their trip to
Disney the Stadium.
However, those of us who came for the music had nothing to complain about. Bear’s Den (who are worth listening to) and The Vaccines (eh) opened and due to a neighborhood curfew, M&S finished the encore by 10:00pm.
Lovers’ Eyes, Babel, I Will Wait, Winter Winds, Whispers in the Dark, Little Lion Man, Below My Feet, Timshel, Lover of the Light, Thistle & Weeds, Ghosts That We Knew, Hopeless Wanderer, Roll Away Your Stone, Awake My Soul, Dust Bowl Dance, I’m On Fire, Reminder, Holland Road, The Cave.
1. Marcus botched a verse during “Winter Winds” and the crowed helped him through. This is why you go to live shows. “For fucks sake,” he’s not Mickey Mouse.
2. “Dustbowl Dance.” Even though Marcus resembles either Tebow or Hilter or both, he makes even my sister speechless during this performance. Mmmhmmm watch it.
3. “I’m On Fire,” a Bruce cover. If you’re a musician and you come to NJ or NYC your choice in covers better be spot on. Between “New York, New York” in Hoboken last year, “Atlantic City” in February, and “I’m On Fire” in Queens, these guys can do no wrong. I couldn’t find the version from this show, but this is the reason I give them even more props because they kindly asked in their British accents to put the cell phones down and just be present for this encore. Or maybe it was something like “fucking enjoy the concert.” We sure did, we sure did.