Scala 22nd October 2007
Les Savy Fav
From the moment singer, Tim Harrington bounds on stage, dressed in riding gear and a top-hat, and mimicking a ringmaster as he whips the crowd (literally) into a frothy frenzy, it soon transpires that there’s no escaping Les Savy Fav’s fun parade tonight.
Lively opener, The Equestrian, an offering from the Brooklyn quartet’s latest album, Let’s Stay Friends, needs no explaining he grabs an unsuspecting stage-diver for a bareback ride, animating the lyrics in every bump. Guitarist, Seth Jabour also joins in on the fun, dancing about the stage in Tim’s hat while he and bassist Syd Butler, exchange grins.
While the focus of their set is essentially an airing of songs featured on the new album (their first in six years), the entertainment tonight also includes intimacy, lunacy and inspiration. The band and crowd become united throughout their performance, not just for a session of howling following an evoking rendition of, What Would Wolves Do, but also, it would seem, forever, after an exchange of wedding vows in a bizarre marriage ceremony.
Emphasising his showman spirit further, Tim sings to the audience direct, allowing them to stroke his head and poke at his belly as he makes his way through them and up to the Scala’s balcony for some singing acrobatics, talk about bringing the circus to town!
But forget the theatrics, the key to the band’s cult-status and staying power is evident tonight in their music alone, as they demonstrate a variety, from discordant punk to melancholy pop.
Old anthems, The Sweat Descends and the suitably titled, Who Rocks The Party, from 1999’s The Cat and The Cobra, are highlights of the night, as is the encore when the band disappear into a sea of bodies during a stage invasion, as if in consummation of the band and fan commitment that took place earlier in the night. A relationship built to last.