On Thursday night Wild Beasts played a free show at Pier 84 for the first of Hudson River Park’s River Rocks free concert series. The weather was as perfect as one could hope for for an outdoor show, setting the tone for a wonderful night of music.
Considering it was a free show, getting an opening set from Mutual Benefit in addition to Wild Beasts was a treat. Their gentle orchestrated blend of folk-rock was ideal for the setting of Pier 84, with the winds of the Hudson River keeping us cool. Mutual Benefit’s brainchild Jordan Lee always delivers witty dry-humor that can get lost on unsuspecting members of the crowd, but for those who have seen the band before, we are used to his sense of humor by now. Even so, the music comes first, and getting to hear elegant tracks such as “Golden Wake” and “Advanced Falconry” just as the sun started to set was more than ideal.
As of right now, I’m hard pressed to name anything other than Wild Beasts latest album Present Tense as my favorite record of 2014 so far. It just has everything going for it. From start to finish, there isn’t a weak track. Every listen brings a new discovery, a new sound or detail that was previously lost on me. Their show at Music Hall of Williamsburg earlier in the year was just when the album was released. This time around I was much more familiar with the material, and ready to take it in completely.
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