Bella Moda's concert reviews: Julian Casablancas at Centerstage Atlanta 3/26

Since I am an eternal music lover and have been surrounded by musicians since I was a small child, I thought since it is an integral part of my life, it’s only appropriate that I start reviewing the concerts I attend.

So, my first official review will be of Julian Casablancas(of famed NY band, The Strokes). Since, I am a longtime fan of The Strokes(who to me, were the forefront of the garage sound). I have seen them on many occasions and was curious to see if Julian still had the same stage demeneor as with The Strokes. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go since I had only listened to the cd a couple of times and hadn’t quite given it a chance yet. My hubby and I thought it was synthed sounding Strokes, but I now know it’s actually very good with a lot of beats and different noises going, and is different from what we had heard from him before. So, when I won tickets on Twitter (via @CarenWestPR), it was on! I broke out the cd grew more and more fond of it as the week went on before the show.

To start, he was, of course, fashionably late as usual(maybe his father taught him that, being a top fashion mogul and all), so that was nothing different. When they came out, I was surprised at the 6 piece band as well, I wasn’t sure quite what to expect. I did know to expect him to be well buzzed….and he was, I knew right away when he almost knocked over a speaker in my direction. He was clad in red pants(which looked velvety), and a black and white striped tank with an embellished leather jacket. Only he could pull that off, but it worked!

They started out with “River Of Brakelights” which is a trippy, industrial sounding Strokes-esque tune. Followed by “Out Of The Blue” (he sings… ““Yes, I know I’m going to hell in a leather jacket/But at least I’ll be in another world while you’re pissing on my casket….”),

Julian was rather rambunctuous and friendly with the crowd and interacted with them throughout the entire evening. He was very outgoing, the most I had seen by him. At one point, I believe during the 3rd (a new song), he ran over and stood on top of the speaker right over where I was standing and proceeded to jump down to the floor and ran by me to the seats behind me and sat down with the crowd. Then he got up and stood up on the chairs and sang…after that he came back by me, I got to touch his embellished leather jacket and then he jumped back on the stage(after almost falling and getting help from the security). He also apparently spilled something on the keyboards, so apologized frequently that night for “breaking everything”.

They then played “11th Dimension”, after which the band left the stage, leaving Julian to entertain the crowd with a lovely sing a long of “I’ll Try Anything Once” by The Strokes. The band then came back out, he announced they would “play a Strokes cover, if you will” and played “Hard To Explain” a crowd pleaser for sure, from The Strokes first album-This Is It. That was the most energetic the crowd was all night, though they seemed really enthusiastic about the show in general and the solo songs.

They ended the set with synth pop(also Strokes-esque song )”Left And Right In The Dark”, followed by my favorite, melodic synth keyboard driven song Glass. This is a very lavish sounding lovely song, with a classic Strokes guitar solo and vocals I haven’t yet heard from Julian in the past. Then ending the full set with “30 Minute Boyfriend”

The encore included “Ludlow Street” a country, drunken sounding(but still futuristic) song about the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Followed by “I Wish It Was Christmas Today” and “4 Chords Of The Apocolypse” which has an older(60’s) feel with big dramatic production. After that song ended, he left the stage in a very quick and drunkenly fashion.

The set was very entertaining and I rather enjoyed the songs and appreciate them in a whole new way. The band was also great, I enjoyed the 2 drummers who also both played guitar and banged on various instruments throughout the night. I also am always relieved and impressed when Julian, as usual, pulls off the show as well as hitting all the notes, when he is in rare “show” form. I was definitely impressed overall with the show and the songs and can’t wait to hear more from Julian in the near future…

Pics below are taken with my blackberry since my camera died, not a great start to my review section…but at least a peek…also, the lighting was not great…I did get a set list though, so enjoy!

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