and I'm finally going to provide my bad video from the night. Overall it was a pretty good show. N.E.R.D. tends to have something akin to a cultish fan base, but the Londoners were ready and psyched for the concert. I am convinced that 1/2 of the people in attendance purposely went out and got Billionaire Boys Club outfits and BAPES just for that night. According to many people in the neighborhood, N.E.R.D. also generated the largest crowd at the Carling Academy in a while. It was a one night only performance at thirty pounds a pop. Apparently Glow in the Dark makes it way over to Europe in the fall, so if you missed it, don't feel too bad.
So after some random Irish band opened, the crowd was ready and hyped for the show. The band came out first, and I'm certain half of the audience thought the drummer was Pharell. But as Pharell and Shay took the stage, the roars became even louder. The backdrop came down and it had dizzying patterns going by on it. It kind of looks like those backgrounds you can choose on a Windows PC for the Jukebox player. I don't know if that was supposed to be an allusion to "Seeing Sounds" or if I was just thinking too hard about the way that the show came together. But in reality, it was a pretty gimmickless show. Now I missed the Glow in the Dark tour, which seemed to be full of sets and really worked as a concept show. This was just straight performances and the crowd thoroughly enjoyed. I guess you don't need all the condiments when you're hungry. Hit after hit was performed and people sang along. Some girl got to go onstage because it was her birthday. My highlight of the night was when they performed "Maybe." That song has my favorite N.E.R.D. video. They also covered the White Stripes "Seven Nation Army." If you don't remember that song, get reacquainted as it has one of the best beats of all times.
At the end of the night, Pharell came back out and performed "Frontin." He acknowledged that it wasn't a N.E.R.D. song, and said he wasn't going to perform it, because he had retired the song from concerts. He also yelled at the crowd that it was a N.E.R.D. concert, and so they should appreciate N.E.R.D. songs. Whatever. I mean I do see the logical and professional dilemma...but he performed the song anyway. It was enjoyed.
I guess that does raise some other interesting questions. If Destiny's Child has a reunited concert do we get to hear Beyonce songs? They do have way more songs than N.E.R.D. to choose from but its a question. When New Edition reunited did BBD or Bobby Brown or Johnny Gill get to do their own songs? Were they all even in the reunited group? Does anyone want to hear grown men sing Mr. Telephone Man?
My new observations from that night: Pharell is even more skinny than I thought he was. Anti-Matter from the latest album, Seeing Sounds is one of my new favorites songs. The Brits live for this kind of music.
Below I've uploaded some clips from the show. The sound is kind of bad and the video is nothing to write home about. I can't even remember what they were singing at some points (It was the weekend of June 14th after all).