The New Pornographers – Terminal 5, NYC

Well over a decade later, it’s apparent: The New Pornographers simply cannot be stopped. Such was the sentiment after witnessing the band’s dynamic live show extravaganza at Terminal 5 on June 19th.

With all eight members on board (Neko Case and Dan Bejar included), the set was a splendid spectacle for all in attendance. The former underdogs, now critical darlings, played like a well-oiled machine; the overall sound and instrumentation unraveled with sheer precision. Harmonious group-supported vocals and riffs were even more powerful live than on record. Keys, tambourines, and Kathryn Calder’s accordion backed up The Pornographers’ renowned indie rock flair with grace.

The band rolled out hits and rarities, reaching back into their catalogue for songs like “Mass Romantic” and “Testament To Youth In Verse,” while expected favorites such as “Use It” and “Sing Me Spanish Techno” also received face time. Though all five albums were represented, new release “Together” was favored with 8 songs including “Silver Jenny Dollar” and my personal favorite “Crash Years.”

The well-balanced set provided many highs, but the best of the best, “The Bleeding Heart Show,” provided the band with a grand pre-encore exit. The energy built gradually along with the song’s rising momentum, leading the entire crowd to join in a roaring sea of “Hey-La’s” that erupted to fill the entire venue – an epic moment indeed!

Though Case and Bejar’s presence definitely bolstered the performance, The New Pornographers’ power lies in their tight ensemble and focused harmony, both of which were evident throughout.

Setlist:

Sing Me Spanish Techno
Up in the Dark
Myriad Harbour
Use It
Crash Years
Jackie, Dress In Cobras
A Bit Out of My Bed
Adventures In Solitude
Sweet Talk, Sweet Talk
Go Places
All the Old Showstoppers
Jackie
Moves
Your Hands (Together)
Twin Cinema
My Shepherd
The Laws Have Changed
Silver Jenny Dollar
Mass Romantic
The Bleeding Heart Show
——————-
Challengers
Slow Descent Into Alcoholism
Testament To Youth In Verse

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