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Old 09.19.2008, 08:58 AM   #1
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Moore energizes NoHo



By: Ian Nelson, Collegian Staff

Posted: 9/19/08

When Thurston Moore stepped to the microphone at the Pearl Street Nightclub on Wednesday night, he didn't exactly exude confidence with his first few words - "We practiced a little bit for this," he said. "Let's see what happens."

After introducing "The Psychic Hearts Band" (including Steve Shelley and a bassist simply referred to as "Mutilation"), Moore dove into his first number, "Elegy for All the Dead Rock Stars." The meandering drones of the two guitars swam with the slowly building drums, eventually cleaning up before rifling into full-on chaos.

Though "Elegy" is actually the final track on Moore's 1995 solo album "Psychic Hearts," Moore chose to jumble the track order, opting to save the title track for last.

The overall tone of the night was one of remembrance, with Moore seeming to get a real kick out of playing songs from his 13-year-old record. "In 1995, I was living in New York City," he explained. "I was deeply in love with my wife; I had a one-year-old kid." Presumably these factors were large influences on the album, which comes across as a deeply affecting romp through Moore's slightly restrained side.

Moore's second piece was the fan favorite "Queen Bee and Her Pals," an angular bounce of sludgy guitars. Moore wasn't trying to fool anyone with his large, handwritten lyric sheets, constantly referring to them throughout the night while he leaned into the microphone.

Next came "Ono Soul," originally the album's second track. He continued chronologically for nearly the rest of the night, following up with "Pretty Bad," but not before mentioning Northampton's loud sound curfew.

"The cops are kinda cool here, in a way," he mused after someone cited the plug-pulling hour as 12:30 a.m. "I like cops actually. I've always had a thing for a man in blue."

"Pretty Bad" might be one of Moore's more metal moments, employing some heavy riffing over a funereal percussion stomp. Moore continued with his comedy, hitting the audience with the sarcastic query "you guys psyched about that Urban Outfitters?"

"Patti Smith Math Scratch" followed, certainly one of the most upbeat tracks of the bunch. Moore really let it out at times, "Patti Smith" included, jumping around while mangling his stickered guitar.

Next up was "Blues From Beyond the Grave," which ended with an all-out cataclysm of cymbals and feedback. This was a shining example of the album's great dynamics, from cluttered, noisy squalls to light, chiming chords.

Again on the noisy side, "See-Through Play/Mate" followed, crunching and clanging along to an eventual grinding halt. Before the next piece, Moore addressed the crowd, going on a bit of a motivational spiel about fathers.

"Your Dad will always be the coolest person in your life," he said. After a pause, he added the warning, "whether you like it or not." Sentimental advice from a 50-year-old, who's still cooler than you? Priceless.

The next number continued with the chaos, as "Hang Out" featured Moore battering his guitar strings as he thrashed about. By this time, he was becoming noticeably sweaty and mentioned craving a "clear drink."

"Once you turn 50, you can't drink anything brown," he explained before admitting "I'm dyin' for a Tanqueray and tonic."

Once a good Samaritan filled his request, Moore jumped into the meat of "Psychic Hearts." After "Feathers," and some banter about the upcoming election ("this one's for the Dems"), the band played the tenth track, "Tranquilizer." Both were supplemented by fervent lyric reference.

Moore had a look of understanding on his face while he interpreted the 13-year-old songs, like looking back on a lost childhood diary. Moore, a decade-and-a-half older, seemed to giggle at his own words self-consciously.

Moore's past self may have seemed funny (or even embarrassing) to him, but it was a hugely appreciated gesture for him to bring the record to life.

Moore introduced the next piece, "Staring Statues," with a story about the title's origin. Apparently it was among a list of band names found in a notebook published by Richard Hell of the Voidoids and Moore agreed, "It's a good band name."

"What song's this?" Moore asked the band moments before the opening guitar part came to him, like remembering a secret handshake. This once again displayed his less-than-pristine memory of his songs, though once he heard one note, he knew where to go.

Further and further down the line of songs, it became apparent that "Psychic Hearts" was truly a means by which Moore could simply rock out. The abstract noise of Sonic Youth was, for the most part, out the window and replaced with calculated loud/soft dynamics and portions set aside to absolutely tear it up.

The only true single from the record followed in the form of "Cindy (Rotten Tanx)." "When Geffen put this record out, they were looking for a single," he said. "There wasn't one."

"Cindy" preceded the subdued "Cherry's Blues," which Moore dedicated to the band Slant 6, whom Moore shared the stage with when "Psychic Hearts" was initially released. "Female Cop" came next, a strange composition of shimmering cymbal rushes, sustained guitar sounds, and other various trembles, murmurs, and clatters.

The last song left from the record was the title track, saved for the end instead of its initial third track position. Lone extra-terrestrial chimes emitted from Moore's guitar before being joined by the rest of the band.

The Psychic Hearts Band encored with the b-side from the "Cindy (Rotten Tanx) 7", "Teenage Buddhist Daydream," which consisted of about a minute's length of the song humorously repeated three times over.

Moore succeeded in holding his status as a very down-to-Earth guitar deity, even going so far as to trade "Psychic Hearts" vinyl reissues for dollar bills. Near-classics like this are far from a dime a dozen, and it's a vastly cherished trend to perform entire records at shows (let alone give them away for so cheap).

Moore is set to perform the record again at New York's version of the ATP festival this weekend, using Northampton to provide a solid taste of what he'll offer in Monticello.
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Old 09.19.2008, 09:03 AM   #2
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http://www.brooklynvegan.com/archive...n_moore_4.html

Thurston Moore played 'Psychic Hearts' in Northampton, MA

photos & review by Georgia Kral
 

There are many sides to Thurston Moore and each are represented when he plays- or rather, shreds- his Fender Jazzmaster so hard you can barely catch your breath. Last night (September 19, 2008) he gave the crowd at the Pearl Street Nightclub, in his hometown of Northampton, Mass., the goofy, fun and relaxed Thurston.
I've seen him with Sonic Youth many times- in venerable venues like McCarren Park Pool, Central Park SummerStage and even the tiny Maxwell's in Hoboken. I've seen him play guitar noise in dingy Bushwick lofts and at the tavern at Hampshire College in Amherst. But it was last night that Thurston came alive as a human and not just a rock star.
continued below...
 

The performance was part show, part rehearsal for the All Tomorrow's Parties Festival this weekend in Monticello, NY. He is set to play 1995's "Psychic Hearts" in its entirety and last night he played each track with a rare dedication. Thurston is the type of artist who is always seemingly 100 percent there. Sure, there were a few fumbles and he had giant note cards with the lyrics scrawled across them on a music stand, but the songs are that great.
Accompanying Thurston was the ever-present and dedicated Steve Shelley on drums (he also played on the record), Chris Brokaw on guitar and a long, curly haired bass player named Mutilation. The group is tight- both musically and personally. They have been touring for the past year, off and off, behind Thurston's recent solo album, "Trees Outside the Academy."
The songs are raw and for the most part short and punk-inspired ditties. Thurston and Chris have developed a certain guitar bond over the last year that is evident. Brokaw watches Thurston for cues, and as he is such a skilled player, can respond with textured and harmonic sounds that stabilize Thurston's chaotic strumming.
 

The banter between performers and audience was exciting and rare. At one point Thurston marveled at a young fan in front of him and asked, "Where were you in 1995?", after explaining he was living in New York, very in love with his wife and with a new baby.
The kid stammered, knowing that he was caught, and answered eventually that he was "7 and knew nothing." Thurston said he could be his father to which the kid responded, "My Dad is not as cool as you."
The crowd laughed and then Thurston said something very telling about himself and about his view of his career.
"Your Dad will always be the coolest person in your life whether you like it or not."
The show at All Tomorrow's Parties, if half as exciting as last night's, will surely be a treat. Try to get up front.
---
some more pictures from the evening....
 




See what else Thurston has been up to.
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Old 09.19.2008, 09:04 AM   #3
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Old 09.19.2008, 09:04 AM   #4
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Thanks Moshe, it'd be great to see him perform that album. Strange that he opened with Elergy though...
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Old 09.19.2008, 09:06 AM   #5
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Does He Age??
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Old 09.19.2008, 09:07 AM   #6
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No, he is just incapable of looking older. Lee must be kicking himself.
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Old 09.19.2008, 09:55 AM   #7
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Damn, that's awesome. How bout a live record on Ecstatic??
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Old 09.19.2008, 11:05 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moshe
"Your Dad will always be the coolest person in your life whether you like it or not.".

what kind of nonsense is that?
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Old 09.19.2008, 11:15 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moshe


 




this guitar, man, this guitar is wow.
what make/model is it again?
(and i also like the funny yellow jacket
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Old 09.19.2008, 02:10 PM   #10
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What kind of guitar is that (the see-through one)?
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Old 09.19.2008, 02:12 PM   #11
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thanks Moshe!

selling Psychic Hearts vinyl for dollar? nice one. nice encore.

wow. Thurston's really sweaty on one of those pics.

oh, man I'd love to see whole Psychic Hearts live.

is today's performance broadcasting live?
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Old 09.19.2008, 02:56 PM   #12
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Good vibes.Good time.
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Old 09.19.2008, 03:04 PM   #13
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ampeg dan armstrong (guitar).
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Old 09.19.2008, 03:06 PM   #14
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thanks!!
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Old 09.19.2008, 03:07 PM   #15
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Oh, man. I've been to Pearl Street, it's a great place. I wish I could've been there.
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Old 09.19.2008, 04:16 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicfit
ampeg dan armstron (guitar).
o wait that's Albini's gtr with a plexi body (1500 euros oooch)
the regular one is 400 though.
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Old 09.19.2008, 05:11 PM   #17
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albini uses travis bean guitars mostly, methinks.......
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Old 09.19.2008, 05:21 PM   #18
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sounded like a great show. i wish i could of caught it
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