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Less Than Jake / The Menzingers: live on a boatlive on a boat (2010)
Reviewer Rating: 4.5
Contributed by: InaGreendaseBrian
(others by this writer | submit your own)
While I've since broadened my horizons and branched out at least somewhat into other arenas of taste, Less Than Jake remains a cornerstone band of my introduction into "punk"--as they are for many, most likely. So while I maybe could have lived without ever seeing the band again (save a nearby show .
While I've since broadened my horizons and branched out at least somewhat into other arenas of taste, Less Than Jake remains a cornerstone band of my introduction into "punk"--as they are for many, most likely. So while I maybe could have lived without ever seeing the band again (save a nearby show involving Hello Rockview, Borders & Boundaries or Losing Streak being played in full...maybe one day...), there was no way I could miss them play The Temptress--a boat situated in the New York harbor, currently in the midst of its months-long concert cruise series. No stage. And the Menzingers opening? I'm there.
My +1 and I used the time in between bands to pick up a $7 plate of food from hot trays being served in the back: salad, meatballs, ziti and chicken. It was only lukewarm, but served its purpose. It was a hefty portion, though, and I was still finishing it when Less Than Jake was set to play 20 minutes later. The tiny floor space facing the band was immediately packed out, while others lined the sides, the balcony and staircase to get a better glimpse surrounding a completely frenzied and exhilarated crowd at the front and center. But even those on the side danced and skanked it up, pretending it was still 1996. As far as how small this show felt, Roger Manganelli summed up the sentiment well when--with a "roof" hanging a couple feet above drummer Vinnie Fiorello's head--he remarked, "This is like a basement show. I didn't know we were playing a basement show!"
The band's set seemed to reflect that--just look at it. It was noticeably heavy on Losing Streak (Hello Rockview and Anthem following), perhaps the band sensing this was a slightly elder crowd craving the old favorites. They integrated plenty of goofy/serious banter, but I especially remember Manganelli harping on his desire to play some new material from their forthcoming EP, much to the rest of the band (and crowd?)'s apparent chagrin. They also included a couple tracks from their last good (and bad) albums ("Does the Lion City Still Roar?", "A Still Life Franchise"), but that newer stuff seemed few and far between. Silly interludes made it too, like "Mississippi Mud" and a take on the "Hungry Hungry Hippos" theme. But the best of these little tidbits were the sound clips from certain songs ("Last One Out of Liberty City," f.e.) that found the crowd rejoicing loudly when they played over the boat's version of a PA.
Toward the end, a few fans had managed to climb onto the edge of the balcony and began diving off onto the crowd. Whether this riled up on-board security I wasn't sure, but I didn't see any melees ensue, so maybe not. It was merely testament to just how cool this whole thing was.
LTJ were a little bit scrappy, and probably cramped in that space, but it was perfect for the atmosphere of the show. Bang-up set list, great performance and probably the most intimate space I'll ever get to see them play. On a boat.
Set list (9:31-10:56):
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