June 15, 2012

Mogwai played Webster Hall

After nixing two shows last year due to Visa problems and health concerns (make that three if you include I'll Be Your Mirror: Asbury Park), the men of Mogwai finally touched down in New York for an almost two hour set of epic proportions. Starting the night off with "White Noise" from their most recent and underrated (yet awesomely named) album Hardcore Will Never Die, But You Will, the post-rock legends tore apart Webster Hall and delivered a performance that without question made up for last year's cancellations. Brooding bass lines, heavy synths, pummeling drums, and rocketing guitars were unleashed on the crowd as the band put forth a dazzling display of talent that ranged across their entire discography. Without even breaking a sweat, these titans demolished ear drums and inflicted thunderous cries of sonic fury of which only a band of this stature is capable. While you'd be lucky to catch some of their contemporaries such as Explosions in the Sky or Sigur Rós in a venue the size of Webster, the intimate setting really allowed the dynamics of these monstrous compositions to be fully realized. Typically, post-rock anthems will release a flood gate of emotions and memories that can take the audience to a whole new level, and tonight's performance did just that. It is hard listen to these tracks without the thought of imposing doom. About midway through the set, the band plunged into "Travel is Dangerous" and the synths were replaced with a triple guitar attack that propelled the rest of the show into the cosmos before a diabolical "Batcat", complete with heavy slashing guitars brought the main set to a close. The night culminated with an apocalyptic rendition of "Mogwai Fear Satan" in which torrential guitar shreds blanketed the room with intense swells of noise. When the wall of sound slowly began to fade, the band exited the stage one by one until waves of droning guitar began to evaporate over the dazed crowd.

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