Date: April 11, 2016
Opener: Cameron Avery
Band Website: http://www.thelastshadowpuppets.com
Embarking to Webster Hall on a Monday night always seems like a challenge from Rockland County. Mix in the usual thunderstorm and some traffic for my concerts in the city, you begin to second guess why you still go to these shows pushing 40. The Last Shadow Puppets are the rare exception however. After an 8 year break, the side project of Alex Turner of the Arctic Monkeys and Miles Kanes were back in the states promoting their latest release “Everything You’ve Come to Expect.” Arriving to the venue about 30 minutes before the doors opened, the line for the show was wrapped around the entire block. Thankfully the line moved pretty fast.
As expected the venue filled up pretty quickly inside but now we all had the usual time to wait around for the opener to come on stage. Cameron Avery, a singer-songwriter, came out with backup singers, a keyboard player and usual backing members. Most of the lighting was pretty dark the entire set but he had definitely quite the following in the crowd. It wasn’t my cup of tea though. “Psychedelic Rock,” is how I would call it to some degree. I didn’t realize he was a member of Tame Impala. It was a good test for the photographers in the pit since it was so crowded to navigate and get the settings down. Openers are always a tricky thing. The fans can either be hot or cold to them. Photographers have to adjust as well as lighting is usually very different for their set up than the headliners.
Back in the pit for The Last Shadow Puppets, the excitement was coming over the crowd to watch the guys play as was I. Being a fan of both the Arctic Monkeys and Miles Kane solo work it was really exciting to photograph the band and also hear the new record live. I loved the band’s choice of music being played before the set, with some oldies like Maxine Nightingale’s “Right Back Where We Started From.” It definitely got me moving and ready to go.
The band emerged along with the string sections that you can hear on the album, and started off with my new favorite “Aviation,” from the “Everything You’ve Come to Expect.” Fans fervor for the band was evident and the place erupted. The guys certainly hammed it up for the photographers in the pits several times doing quite a bit of rock “poses” with the guitars. Hey, that’s the best kind of rock show! The hard part was getting in a clean shot and in front of them for the shot however. Miles Kane and Alex Turner traded vocals and guitar riffs all night. In my opinion, I think Miles Kane is the star of the group as much of the fans adore Alex Turner and what he has done with the Arctic Monkeys. Miles Kane performance and stage presence was excellent and kept the fans in it. Alex Turner played up the hip, cool James Dean persona as well. I think he was a bit out of it as well. It certainly felt that way as he chit chatted with the crowd in between songs. High marks though, it wasn’t noticeable during the tunes. The bromance these two carry on stage is obvious and plays well to the crowd. Fans love it as do the performers.
If you were expecting some abridged setlist from the group, think again as they covered nearly both records at the sold out, packed to the gills, Webster Hall. All the fan favorites were played like “My Mistakes Were Made For You,” “Meeting Place,” “Only The Truth.” New favorites appeared to be the first single on the new album “Bad Habits.” An electric, full on rock tune, Miles and Alex had the crowd in the palm of their hand. Miles Kane really shined on that song. The band wrapped up after more than 90 mins with an encore of The Beatles cover “I Want You (She’s So Heavy), The Dream Synopsis, and the band’s biggest hit “Standing Next to Me.”
Let’s hope these guys can get together more frequently in the future, but if not there’s always these awesome records and their main band projects!
Here are some photos from the show:
The Last Shadow Puppets