Yeah Yeah Yeahs Played A “Secret” Show @ Santos Party House Last Night

Nobody expected Karen O to fellate her mic and pour beer on herself on SNL. Although we all probably hoped she would. And boomy sound aside, the band certainly played live and, for their part, sounded great at 30 Rock. But after that performance and a somewhat dazed turn on Jools, I was wondering if maybe Karen and the YYYs were turning a little tame on us. After last night’s terribly kept “secret show” at Santos Party House I can say DON’T WORRY: Yeah Yeah Yeahs are everything you remember, just with more synths and a bonus Pajo. The set included a good chunk of old songs (“Black Tongue,” “Art Star,” etc.), and the new stuff sounded fresh. “Skeletons” into “Hysteric” came across as a powerfully emotive one-two, and either would have been a welcome substitute to the still-great but so-old “Maps” on Saturday Night. Plus, Slint superhero David Pajo (on bass, keys, guitars) was stellar in seizing Imaad Waasif’s vacated seat as honorary fourth Yeah. Karen stripped to some glowy, studded S&M leather gear, blew her mic on “Down Boy,” and looked noticeably more in her element throughout (and especially on “Zero”). She thanked the crowd: “This is our first show of the tour, thanks for coming.” Consider the kinks worked out; they were sexy, romantic, all that. It was great. They’re going on tour. Buy all the tickets. That photo comes via Laura Modern Age, and here are some videos and setlist from last night:

Starting with “Art Star”:

Here’s “Maps,” which you just saw on SNL but whatever it’s a good song. Karen did the thing where she dedicates “the Yeah Yeah Yeahs love song” to all the band members’ significant others (except she forgot Pajo’s wife’s name, poor Mrs. Pajo). Also she apologizes for saying “fucking,” which is cute and also maybe a little mommy of her.

For the encore the band opened it up to requests. After narrowing the field to “Turn Into” and “Date With The Night,” Karen had the crowd vote. Everybody wanted “Date With The Night,” obvs. They got both. Here’s the crowd fave:

All video shot by Abbey Braden.

SET LIST
01 “Heads Will Roll”
02 “Black Tongue”
03 “Still Fly Like A Dragon”
04 “Phenomena”
05 “Dull Life”
06 “Gold Lion”
07 “Art Star”
08 “Skeletons”
09 “Hysteric”
10 “Down Boy”
11 “Zero”
12 “Maps”
13 “Y Control”
—-
14 “Turn Into”
15 “Date With The Night”
16 “Poor Song”

And don’t forget that Animal Collective remix.