I’ve seen many shows over the years, but I’ve never seen a band have as much fun as OK Go did when they performed at the 9:30 Club in Washington, DC. They put on a show like a ticket tape parade, only ten times more exciting.
They were preceded by Robert Francis and Earl Greyhound, who frankly, didn’t do them justice. Robert Francis were barely memorable and the crowd mostly talked through the whole set. Earl Greyhound was the better of the two, a classic rock band in every sense. It was like watching Jimi Hendrix perform. The only problem was that they should have done a sound check before they took the stage. The vocals were almost impossible to hear over the music, which was so loud that sometimes felt like noise. They ended their set with a ten minute long jam song to get the crowd ready for the main event.
When OK Go finally took the stage, they opened with the crowd-pumping “Invincible” while colored paper rained all around them. I wasn’t kidding when I said it was like a ticker tape parade. Despite the fact that they used that for only a few songs by the end of the night, the stage and the front of the venue were covered in red, blue, yellow and white. Throughout the show, the lead singer jumped into the crowd a few times and joined the center of the club to play acoustically. They even did an entire song while playing the hand bells. All with a smile, like little kids playing with their friends.
Despite the cursing, it felt very family friendly. Not pretentious or forced, just pure unadulterated fun. I left feeling like I had seen songs I love performed perfectly and with glee. No matter how loud or how quiet the song, they sounded great. Perfectly choreographed melodies like their clever music videos, which you’re probably wondering, and no, they didn’t recreate.
For their encore, they emerged wearing their LED jackets which read “OK Go” when they stood side to side and guitars with lasers that they used point at the audience with. But even cooler than that was their other use of technology. First, they photographed the audience, as they do at all their shows, and then uploaded a picture to Facebook so concertgoers could tag themselves.
They were also selling their CD in the form of a USB drive, which also contained their videos and the entire live set. This is the most awesome thing I’ve ever seen a band do for several reasons. One, because they’re obviously good enough to be immortalized each time they play live and they know it. Secondly, they’re giving their fans a chance to remember a great night in a much better way than low-quality Youtube videos ever could. And lastly, because I’ve never seen a performer do this, and they should because it’s a brilliant idea.
They’re definitely a band I would absolutely recommend seeing live, regardless of familiar you are with their music. Chances are they’re behind at least a few songs you know and like. And there’s an even better chance you’ll leave the show a fan. So OK, Go!