It’s night 1 of 3 this week for seeing The Faint.
The Fillmore is teeming with in-the-know music junkies. Shy Child, a New York duo, is mid set on the stage as we make our way to our usual stage right spots. The vocalist, who sounds a lot like one of The Rapture vocalists, plays the keytar, which is complemented by a drummer. They’ve toured with Klaxons and Hot Chip, and are very much in that vein of music. It’s fun and dancy, but lacks the sophistication and substance of its headliner.
I will gladly dance to Shy Child for 2 more nights as long as I don’t have to endure another set by Glass Candy. Also a duo, I found it not at all pleasing to my eyes or ears. It was one part disco, one part electro, and all parts boring. It just didn’t all come together for me. I felt like they were just trying too hard. I also did not appreciate the singer’s leggings or dance moves. It was low energy, and the crowd stood still looking mostly bored…
But not for long. The Faint started their set off strong with Agenda Suicide, Dropkick the Punks, and Take Me to the Hospital. The crowd danced wildly, and the usual assholes pushed their way to the front. Todd was dressed as a mad scientist, wearing a lab coat and goggles. The usual video screens were replaced with projections along the back wall- minimalist but still visually interesting, like shadow puppets dancing along the wall. They then launched into their first new song from their album releasing today, Fasciinatiion. You could see them tense up a bit during the new songs. After touring for 4 years playing the same comfortable, wildly popular material, it is probably a little daunting to perform new songs from a yet to be released album where the crowd’s energy level takes a significant dive…but they were just listening. Machine in the Ghost went first, which I have mixed feelings about. It feels a bit up tempo for what I’m used to for them. The Faint showed their intelligence by spacing out their new songs throughout the set, thus keeping the crowd engaged and not forcing the new material down their throats. Desperate Guys injected the familiar before launching into the next new song, Forever Growing Centipedes, which is a vocal heavy track displaying the lyrical prowess of the band. Then, Birth was introduced by Todd saying that they were going back to the beginning, and you might have heard them play this in a basement back in the day. Your Retro Career Melted and Posed to Death served as a double feature from Danse Macabre. 2 new tracks followed, Get Seduced and I Treat You Wrong. Get Seduced is heavy on the electro, while I Treat You Wrong has the same uncharacteristic up beat qualities that turned me off a bit. Joel and Dapose seem to be switching off bass and guitar more than usual on this tour. I Disappear ended the core set, which is a great song to leave the stage with.
They busted back on stage with Paranioattack, which entailed a lot of crowd participation. Then, The Geeks Were Right, their first single off the new album, was well received by the crowd. They left us with Glass Danse, where the crowd let loose of the last of their energy, pogoing with smiles on their faces.
I was able to score a setlist at the end, which takes away the sadness from the lack of posters available (from the venue or for purchase at merch). However, upon leaving, there was an interesting mock up poster from the show hanging on the wall, made of what looked like black construction paper and aluminum foil.
I hope the setlist alters for the next 2 shows. I’d like to request Erection, The Conductor, Psycho from the new album, and their cover of NIN’s Meet Your Master would be real sweet. Also, keyboard man, where were your backbends? I missed them.
The Faint performance: 9/10
Glass Candy performance: 4/10
Shy Child performance: 7/10
venue (The Fillmore): 8.5/10
value ($25/ticket): 8.5/10
Flickr pics from ToastyKen:
Some vids from lightandstorm on youtube with quite good audio:
The Geeks Were Right:
“Living out the days and nights in absolute fearNever knowing when and where thethreat of the undead draws nearThoughts of…
“Now, listen up She’s a razor sharp If she don’t get her way She’ll slice you apart Now she’s a…
“Oh, they should have knownNot to play with the powers of HellSome people have lost their waySome people have lost…
“I’m the walking dudeI can see all the worldTwist your minds with fearI’m the man with the powerAmong the living,…
“And I find it kind of funny I find it kind of sad The dreams in which I’m dying Are…
“The sparkle in your eyes Keeps me alive And the sparkle in your eyes Keeps me alive, keeps me alive…
“It’s early morning, the sun comes out Last night was shaking and pretty loud My cat is purring, it scratches…
“We hold each other closer, as we shift to overdrive And everything goes rushing by, with every nerve alive We…
“I could talk about my world How you brought about ruin I could talk about your greed If you want…
“Always lived, very quiet lifeI ain’t never did no wrongNow I know that life without youHas been too lonely too…
they put on a great live show! can’t wait to see what they play tonight… and Sat night… does seeing the faint 3 times in one week make me a groupie?
Bummer on no poster. I’m less than optimistic for the Regency show then. Boo!
I liked your description of their new sound. Listening to the new album, I see it dissected into 3 areas: classic (yet refreshed), math rock and pop. Could have done with the pop feel which you more accurately described as ‘uptempo’, but nothing is bad, per say.
It was great to have the background from your other article about the fact that this new album is from their own label (having dropped their original label). Gives perspective on their new sound.
My first time seeing The Faint, and thought they were so awesome. Nice review!
Nice review. I enjoyed the show!! However, I’m from Denver and this was my first show in SF. Without trying to offend or make any judgments, I thought the crowd in SF was very laid back to the point of seeming less interested. Denver went NUTS for The Faint, SF seemed to simply enjoy the show. Also, in Denver, the crowd seemed much more dressed up for the show (i.e. – rowdy hair- rowdy cloths etc.). Was the August 4th show at the Fillmore representative of most SF crowds?
I saw the faint at bfd(shoreline). The fan base there was way more energetic. None the less, Aug 4th was amazing. They played everysong I could dream seing live and on top of that the venue was amazing. Wouldnt trade it for the world.
The mad scientist theme was awesome as well.