Wednesday, June 9, 2010

A Few Thoughts Arcade Fire, Spoon, and Madison Square Garden

If the recent sellouts of Radio City by the likes of The National, Vampire Weekend, and Spoon weren't enough to convince you that indie had gone mainstream, this is sure to be the straw that breaks the camel's back. By now you've almost certainly caught wind of what is promising to be the summer's "must see" indie show: Merge Records has taken their two most chart-conquering acts, and for one week in August will send Arcade Fire out into the world with Spoon to play a series of what can only be called very large venues.

For New Yorkers, this means a night at Madison Square Garden; perhaps the most "you've really made it" venue in the world. The gig falls in the middle of a week of shows down the east coast, and is perhaps the closest we've seen an indie gig ever getting to being part-of-the-mainstream. Never mind the vacuous size of the venue, the show also sports a $60 ticket face value, an American Express presale, and all the wonders of dealing with the monstrosity that is Ticketmaster.

Sure, it's always great to see fantastic bands make it big, but at the same time, it's a shame to see their success translated into membership in the all-to-ubiquitous clear channel machine. Don't get us wrong, we love the new Spoon record, and if the white label 12" that dropped a while back is any indication, the new one from Arcade Fire promises to be a gem as well. That being said, we sure wouldn't mind if someone in their management would take a hint from The Clash and realize that doing 17 nights at a small venue with reasonable ticket prices is by far preferable to one night in an enormous room.

Arcade Fire and Spoon Summer 2010 Dates
Aug 2 Mann Centre for the Performing Arts Philadelphia, PA
Aug 4 Madison Square Garden New York, NY
Aug 8 Lollapalooza Chicago, IL
Aug 9 Ryman Auditorium Nashville, TN
Aug 11 Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre Atlanta, GA

Tickets to the New York show go on sale Saturday