It was already really hot and really crowded at 9.30 pm at Club Maria, and people were pushing each other around to try and get a spot up front. Suckers, the warm up band, had just played half an hour of energetic party pop with trumpets, drum machines and a half naked guy dressed in glitter and feathers dancing, and now we were all just waiting for Yeasayer to come on stage.
The Brooklyn, New York based indie pop band released their second album Odd Blood in February, and have been touring extensively with it since. This week they have come to Europe to play a few concerts, and Berlin was one of their destinations, and the only one in Germany.
Shortly after 10 pm the lighting was finally dimmed, the crowd started cheering, and Yeasayer came on stage opening the show with the catchy, and very sing-along friendly, Madder Red, one of the singles from Odd Blood. You can kind of tell by the name that they are not exactly a blues band, and so they managed to start a party from the very first notes, with a colourful light show, a lot of dancing around on stage and a great contact to the audience. And sonically there was a lot going on too. Samples of electronic sounds that you can’t really define, a percussionist (in a Bob Marley T-shirt), jazzy keyboard solos and three great vocalists laying the poppy melodies on top of it all.
They went on with Rome, another song from Odd Blood, and then played a handful of old material. After finishing with two hit singles O.N.E. and Ambling Alp, where the crowd had gone practically mad with dancing, the percussionist in the Bob Marley T-shirt came out and asked ”are you all here to party or what?” several times, until the screaming was satisfying, and the band came back for two more songs.
Yeasayer had an amazing presence on stage, and an energy that made you feel that they were giving all they had to make this a show. And everybody was happy, and you just wanted more. When I came out after the concert, people were still singing their songs outside. And the way too hummable chorus from Madder Red still just won’t let me go.
What a terrific concert.