Gnarls Barkley @ House Of Blues, Chicago 8/3/06

Dress was casual: the dynamic duo sported chefs’ outfits, backed by an eleven-piece line-up of short-order cooks and apron-clad, bespectacled waitresses. To a Gnarly spin on “Hungry Like The Wolf,” Cee-Lo took center stage carrying a tray of muffins, which were promptly distributed to fans in the front row. Then the rock ‘n’ roll baker’s dozen got the party started with some “Gadget Gospel.” And we broke out the Sidekick…

“First things first,” the singer cooly requested. “I wanna hear fucking mass hysteria from the top to the bottom … we are The Sam Cooks!”

We were bopping all night. And the band delivered service with a smile. Endlessly entertaining, from Cee’s funky Lizard King impression to the waitresses’ jerky zombie jig during “Necromancer,” this show had it all. “If you get the impulse to pull those titties out, go right ahead,” Cee-Lo offered. “I won’t judge you. I won’t judge you.”

Gnarls ruled the packed House like this set was the most important night of the psychedelic soulmen’s career. We knew better, but it didn’t matter; tonight we were Elsewhere.

“Help us out. We only got one fucking album. What could we possibly do next?” That’s when things got “Crazy.” Spirit fingers!

Here’s the setlist:

1. “Go-Go Gadget Gospel”
2. “Who Cares?”
3. “The Boogie Monster”
4. “St. Elsewhere”
5. “Just A Thought”
6. “There’s An End” (Holly Golightly)
7. “Gone Daddy Gone”
8. “Feng Shui”
9. “The Last Time”
10. “Necromancer”
11. “Who Scared You” (The Doors)
12. “Crazy”

Encore
13. “Transformer”
14. “Storm Coming”
15. “Smiley Faces”