Other Lives 10/10/15

(a) setlist

Act 1: Desert

  1. New Fog
  2. Tamer Animals
  3. Desert
  4. No Trouble
  5. As I Lay My Head Down
  6. Dark Horse
  7. Easy Way Out

Act 2: Dustbowl

  1. Dustbowl III
  2. Weather
  3. Landforms
  4. For 12
  5. For the Last
  6. Need a Line

Act 3: Space

  1. 2 Pyramids
  2. Pattern
  3. Untitled
  4. Black Tables
  5. Reconfiguration
  6. Ritual

(b) highlights

  • the whole conception of the show was freaking¬†cool – BAM is a bomb ass venue and I wish more bands did exactly what Other Lives did with this performance
  • cannot underscore enough how awesome the visuals were
  • the acoustics of the venue were out of control great
  • Other Lives’ material was perfectly intertwined with the stage production; such a beautiful experience

(c) lowlights

  • none – it was amazing

(d) overall thoughts

Other Lives are a freaking cool band and, somehow, they put on a full-stage production of their entire discography at BAM, aka the Brooklyn Academy of Music, which is a gorgeous seated theatre. I’m not sure how the band decided to put together this performance, but thematically, it allowed them to pay tribute to their vast collection of music and tell a visual narrative that was equal parts moving and entertaining.

The show began with a desert theme – an idea I’ve always connected to, being from the west coast – and the stage production depicted this so well. With sandy dunes and setting suns, the stage had physical moving parts that really brought the music alive. I’ve always greatly appreciated Other Lives’ use of strings and horns, but their display here really brought their quintessential sound to the next level. I didn’t even mind that we were all sitting for it. It still worked.

The Dustbowl act was really cool too, because I know the band is from Oklahoma, so it felt like getting a unique insight into their home in a Steinbeck-by-way-of-Brooklyn sort of way. The final act devoted to other worldly space was exceptionally beautiful and really wrapped up the narrative nicely. The whole show was so beautiful and difficult to explain, but I think the best experiences are sometimes.

Bottom line: Other Lives put on one of the most unique and beautiful performances I’d ever seen; it desperately made me wish more bands combined their music with traditional theatre and stage productions. It was quite unforgettable.

Photo by David Guame

Photo by the New York Times

Photo by Village Voice