Live - Bloc Party, Does It Offend You, Yeah? @ The Fillmore | SF

You ever have one of the bands you're completely stupid about? Like, someone asks you "Hey, have you ever heard of so-and-so?," and you start drooling and nodding like an idiot, unable to comment properly on your love for these groups?

I was in the presence of two of them last night, and I forgot my bib...

It was a Britfest as Bloc Party and Does It Offend You, Yeah? made my existence better at the Fillmore last night. The latter climbed on stage shortly after 9PM to a weird crowd; while I was in the middle with my friends freaking out to party anthem "Let's Make Out" and singer Morgan Quantenance had jumped into the audience to pump us up, I saw a minimal amount of hands up in the air like mine. Curiously, the boys opened with three of their most electronic instrumental songs, and I wondered if that were the cause for no dance explosions around me. I actually wrote, "crowd has gay ass low energy" in my notebook.

The DIOYY boys did a nice job of filling the sound at the Fillmore though, spread out on stage with co-singer James Rushent hanging out in between. It was obvious the guys were trying their hardest to rock out and deliver. "With A Heavy Heart (I Regret To Inform You)" has become a gem live. Rushent's yelps and urgent vocals sliced through fast drums while walls of noise cave in and then implode at the bridge, encompassing a punk and heavy rock sound infused with electronic components that just makes me want to make out with everyone around me. Closer "We Are Rockstars" seemed to generate a better response from the crowd, but I couldn't help thinking that all these fools were punks for not dancing. Hello, how could you not like cowbell?

I waited in anticipation for the Party to come on, and I was greatly rewarded; being away from the States for a year has given the London four piece time to really nail and craft their rhythms. Singer Kele Okereke was spot on for a large majority, if not all of the night, delivering pitch-perfect vocals through both ballads like "This Modern Love" and ragers like "Helicopter." Guitarist Russell Lissack still brought his expert axe-picking skills to the party, and bass player Gordon Moakes was seamless in his underlying tempos. Drummer Matt Tong played faultless percussion and was still shirtless.

But albeit as near precise their set was - I had no complaints about sound, tightness or legit status - it was almost like it was a 'best of Bloc' night where all the hits got spun. I was reminded as to why they are so great live, no doubt; Bloc Party is one of the better bands to come out of London in recent years, and it's mainly because they care a whole lot about what they sound like. I nearly shit a brick when "So Here We Are" came on and the guitars enveloped me in this beautiful layering of strings. But the only new song to be played was current U.K. single "Mercury," and I had been hoping to see what else the band have been cooking up this whole time they have been away. Guys, I fucking love you; all I ask is that you gimme some shit to listen to. I know you're capable.
Bloc Party Set List

"The Prayer"

"Waiting for the 7.18"
"Hunting For Witches"
"This Modern Love"
"Once and Future King"
"So Here We Are"
"Like Eating Glass"
"Blue Light"
"Positive Tension"


Second Encore
"She's Hearing Voices"

Third Encore
"Two More Years"

Bloc Party


Live - Bloc Party, Does It Offend You, Yeah? @ The Fillmore | SF