We Are Scientists 5/11/16

(a) setlist

First set:

    1. Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt
    2. This Scene Is Dead
    3. Inaction
    4. Can’t Lose
    5. Callbacks
    6. Cash Cow
    7. It’s a Hit
    8. The Great Escape
    9. Textbook
    10. Lousy Reputation
    11. Worth The Wait
    12. What’s The Word

Second set:

  1. Rules Don’t Stop
  2. Buckle
  3. Chick Lit
  4. Classic Love
  5. I Don’t Bite
  6. Dumb Luck
  7. Impatience
  8. In My Head
  9. Make It Easy
  10. Nice Guys
  11. After Hours
  12. Too Late

(b) highlights

  • seeing the entirety of the CLASSIC album With Love and Squalor
  • Michael Tapper, the original drummer of WAS who played on the first album, came back to play the first set with Keith and Chris – this was the first time they all jammed since 2006/07ish; this made me strangely emotional because the first few times I saw WAS live, Michael was their drummer
  • that classic Keith and Chris between-song banter gives life to my soul
  • the entire second set was ON.POINT.
  • the crowd was shockingly good – seemed like everyone knew the new songs as well as the oldies
  • Keith Carne, the current WAS drummer, always freaking kills it
  • the phrase of the night: “it’s not a We Are Scientists show unless Keith breaks something and then we fear for his life”
  • “Too Late” is a brand new song, but somehow the perfect set closer, freaking loved it

(c) lowlights

  • wish they had played my current favorite song on the new album, “We Need a Word”

(d) overall thoughts

The first time I saw We Are Scientists, they opened for Arctic Monkeys (!) at the Henry Fonda in LA on March 15, 2006 (!). For 10 years, I’ve loved watching these dudes perform – anyone who’s seen them live would certainly agree. This show at Irving Plaza was a special 10-year anniversary celebration for the release of their debut album With Love and Squalor – the album that made a lot of people fall in love with them. Even better – the band still played a full set immediately following that With Love and Squalor performance. How sick is that?

Adding a wonderful flourish, Keith Murray and Chris Cain played With Love and Squalor with their original drummer Michael Tapper, who left the band before their second album was released in 2007. It felt like a strange blast from the past seeing him, and – in a bizarre way – made me realize how much We Are Scientists have stayed the same over the years. Yeah – they’ve grown as performers, musicians, and songwriters, but they’re still the same lanky dudes singing the same songs and making the same jokes. And that’s why they’re so awesome. It’s all fun in a familiar way, like hanging out with old friends.

The second set featured four new songs off their most recent album, which only came out last week, Helter Seltzer. The crowd was loving every minute of it and I was elated to finally feel like everyone was dancing just as much as I was. I got a good feeling about this album; its reception is gonna be stellar. Ultimately, I’m so proud of these dudes and I’ll continue to support them as long as they keep making awesome tunes and making me laugh – which I imagine will keep happening until death.

Bottom Line: I’ve been a WAS fan for a decade and there’s no sign of stopping. Also, if you claim to be a WAS fan and you don’t sing “if you’re the night sky, then act like the night sky” during “Nice Guys,” then you’re lying.

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