Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Pulp Invades America

You say you've never been sure,
though it makes good sense for you to be together.
Still you bought a toy that can reach the places he never goes.

The band that inspired this blog's namesake has finally returned to America after 14 years away, starting with a two-song performance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon. Judging from reviews and twitter searches for #pulp, the reception is overwhelmingly positive. If they do, in fact, stay together and release some new music as rumored, will they return to the colonies for another go? The entire midwest still needs some action, as does Canada. An Asian tour seems like a given, but has yet to surface. I hope Japan is still as much fun to tour in 2012 as it was in 1996. Pulp is clearly aware of the popularity of "Like a Friend" here, since it was performed at both Radio City gigs and on Fallon. Go, Team Venture, indeed.

Setlists? So far, excellent. It's good to see "Like a Friend" being played live, because it's one of their finest songs, and also one of the most popular on this side of the water. A Different Class-centric set is no surprise, but to this extent it is, with 11 out of the albums 12 tracks being played each night. Perhaps they don't think American audiences care about We Love Life and This Is Hardcore, which is a shame because "The Fear", "Help the Aged", and "Wickerman" would be the highlights of any set. Notable absence of pre-His 'N' Hers material is likely due to Russell Senior not being a part of this tour. Word is they considered playing "O.U. (Gone, Gone) in New York. California, perhaps? Certainly not Coachella, though.

Night 2 setlist:

Do You Remember the First Time?
Monday Morning
Pencil Skirt
Something Changed
Disco 2000
Sorted for E's & Wizz
I Spy
(a snippet of) Louie Louie (Richard Berry cover)
This Is Hardcore
Bar Italia
Common People
Like a Friend
Bad Cover Version

First night's setlist was mostly identical, except "Live Bed Show" and "Party Hard" were performed instead of "Bad Cover Version" and "Monday Morning."

The crowd at their first proper American gig at Radio City Music Hall looks fairly lively for a massive, seated theatre in New York, but completely tame compared to some of the European crowds. Will the rowdiness and singalongs ensue at Coachella or the general admission shows in San Francisco and Pomona? Observe the differences below.

Radio City Music Hall:

Primavera Sound:

1 comment:

  1. Unfit videos for comparison!! I was at the second NY gig, and we were going nuts... the video seems to be from the tippy top tier, but I can assure you the orchestra level was losing their minds. The Different Class setlist was definitely expected, I had unrealistic hopes for She's a Lady, My Legendary Girlfriend, Seconds, and Help The Aged. No complaints though, for every song I wish they'd played, I couldn't think of one to sacrifice for it. This show was 16 years in the making for me, and something I never thought would happen. They played so well, it was worth the wait for sure. Kinda confused about the Russell Senior thing, the bill said he was included in the line-up, but as soon as I got to Radio City I saw he'd been cut out of the photo (from the Different Class booklet). Did he play any of the UK dates leading up to their departure here?

    ps- Coachella may have gotten a way shorter set (score for me), but they DID get The Fear....Bastards.