Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Gig Review: MGMT - Palace Theatre, Melbourne

First on stage were Pond, who essentially looked like MGMT if they had been de-aged by a decade. They also looked like they had come directly from a 'Time To Pretend' video shoot given their various states of undress. Listening to their set was basically a game of 'pick the late '60s psychedelic hippie tune', but they passed the time for the audience in attendance, and playing to a large crowd seemed like it was a thrill to them at least.

The real MGMT then stood up, opening with three of my favourites: 'Weekend Wars', 'I Found A Whistle', and the duke of all rock manifesto anthems: 'Time To Pretend'. For all the kerfuffle about how much of a departure their second album was from their first (always an exaggeration), the songs were woven pretty much seamlessly together, backed by the obligatory arty footage of coloured lights and transposed images. The set was well executed and very rarely dull, no small achievement for a band that has the 12-minute 'Siberian Breaks' in their repertoire. There wasn't much in the way of putting on an actual 'show' for the punters - the exception being 'Kids' where Andrew and Ben left their instruments and danced and rolled about the stage - but the band didn't really need to resort to theatrics when the music they were playing was so multi-layered and, to use a 'late '60s psychedelic hippie' term, groovy. The audience reacted well also, obviously the popster trinity of 'Kids', 'Electric Feel', and 'Time To Pretend' received the most enthuastic responses, but in contrast to reports I have read of other shows, the band's other material wasn't drowned out by the murmuring. All in all, worth a pat on the back and a great big congratulations for Brooklyn's shaggiest, and let's see where they go from here.

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