If You're Feeling Sinister At the free Belle and Sebastian concert in Battery Park yesterday, they were checking bags. Belle and Sebastian shows, of course, are a high-profile terrorist target, and it would be horrible if anything were to happen: twee body parts everywhere, the horrid high-pitched screams as the crowd tries to flounce away from the carnage--truly horrible. The mind reels to actually consider it.
Also, getting killed in the stampede of a Belle and Sebastian audience is the least hardcore death imaginable, sure to get me picked on once I slip through the Pearly Gates. Even those who died in the Great White club fire look down their noses at that.
The show itself was great, even if there was no place for me to safely look. I spent two hours mortified by the crowd--white people truly are incapable of dancing. To one side, the fat teenager who learned to dance from a VH-1 Special " 1968: The Summer of Love," to the other, a couple straining their Ballroom Dancing lessons to the breaking point. And all around, white boys with quivering shoulders and stationary hips, inspired by St. Vitus. I, apparently, feel shame so they don't have to.
Belle and Sebastian are great, but they will never ever be cool. They rarely try, which is admirable, but it only makes their one foray into "coolness" all the more dissonant: an encore starting with a Jimi Hendrix's "Star-Spangled Banner," which the guitarist only faintly remembered--starting in mid-song, doubling back to the beginning, with identical feedback to Jimi's version, and cutting out earlier than where he began the song.
The crowd loved it. I went off to drink cheap beer out of styrofoam cups and listen to the jukebox.