They Might Be Giants (TMBG) is an alternative rock band out of New York City. They have been making music since the early 80s and are still on a roll. With their upcoming release of their new album, I Like Fun, they planned out a fifty city U.S. tour with Baton Rouge being their fifth stop. When I caught wind of this upcoming show, I knew that I was going and that I was going to take my dad with me. My dad is the reason why I fell for the band’s music. He would play their albums for me while growing up. Of course, we listened to Flood, John Henry, Apollo 18, and many others. My dad was actually the one who helped me put the Apollo 18 album on my first Walkman. So we made the plans, and got going to the show.
After doing an interview with John Flansburgh earlier in the day, I was pumped. The show started at 8:05PM, and our excitement was hard to contain. After listening to their first song of the night, both Johns spoke to the audience about what was in store for tonight. They had two bits of exciting news for us. The first was that TMBG were going to open for themselves that night. The second being that they were going to primarily play songs off of the Apollo 18 album. My dad and I looked at each other in disbelief and rocked on to the rest of the night.
Initially I did not think TMBG were going to play Fingertips that night (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXmBs1OppXw). They had already played Mammal, Evil Twin, and Statue Got Me High. But then they started and I was overjoyed. Previously in my interview with Flansburgh, we only talked about one song and that was Fingertips. After, four more songs played, we went into intermission.
After taking a 20-minute break TMBG were back on stage for their acoustic set. This part of the show opened with my favorite song from the Apollo 18 album, Space Suit. The song was so technical and complicated, but they did an extraordinary job pulling it off live. John Linnell played the contra alto clarinet, an instrument that I have never seen in person, and the accordion during this part of the show. Acoustic Istanbul was one of my favorites from that night.
I must say that both Johns were super friendly on stage. The chemistry that they held with their audience was one that I have rarely seen. They constantly joked around with us, especially with one concert goer that was playing a first-person shooter video game in the back of the house.
As the night went on we made it to the end of the concert where TMBG gave us two encores. I told my dad at the beginning of the night that if Birdhouse in your Soul was played, my life would be made. And of course TMBG came through with that too. The inner child that grew up listening to TMBG had the time of her life that night, because they played the music that was close to home for my dad and me.
If you ever get the chance to see TMBG, it is a must.