Les Savy Fav – Live @ Echoplex 5-9-10 Les Savy Fav – Live @ Echoplex 5-9-10

Les Savy Fav have been very clear over the years that they consider their live shows and recorded material completely separate creatures. Right now Les Savy Fav is back in the studio, which is reasonably big news for a band that has only released two albums in the last decade and was at one point rumored to be on hiatus. This is a band that scarcely plays live shows, but even so, the chaotic fervor they bring to the stage has enshrined their reputation as one of the biggest spectacles in music.

The Echoplex in LA is a near perfect venue in my mind. The staff is competent and laid back, crisp sound, great lighting, it’s independently owned and they’re constantly booking first rate bands. This is one of the finest places on the West Coast to catch a show. So, at a capacity hovering around 600 people, it begs the question: Why the Fuck wasn’t this show sold out well in advance?

No accounting for taste I guess.

Lead singer Tim Harrington is a showman. It’s trite and worn-out to call him a wildcard, insane, etc. He simply understands how to perform. The over-the-top nature of the live show isn’t for everyone. It’s been referred to as antics, like it was a 2nd rate sideshow, by some critics I highly regard; I disagree completely.

As the band takes the stage there is no sight of Tim. The man likes to make an entrance, this time on all fours adorned in a ski mask that’s cut up as if a bank robbery was on the horizon. Through the mask’s eye holes all you see are Japanese comic-style, oversized pupils from a prosthetic eye-piece underneath.

The rest of the band has become professional at ignoring the antics of their lead singer. They’re impressively adept and acting disassociated while a shit storm hurls itself around the stage at 100mph. As the show progresses Tim removes the mask, and the underlying prosthetic eye piece, then his shirt, all while repeatedly bounding into the crowd for minutes at a time. Meanwhile, true to form, the rest of the band’s persona is outwardly blasé as if they were playing smooth jazz at a Ramada Inn. That’s not to say that the band isn’t rocking the place, just that they demonstrate the tranquility of having been in this war zone countless times before; transcendental meditation at its finest.

At one point a wild haired fan decides to execute what can only be described as an ill-conceived plan to jump on stage and do a little dance. Tim immediately pantsed the guy leaving him dick out, bare-assed and ready for public mockery.

The main set list was peppered with a couple new songs and a solid mix of older material. Ten minutes or so had passed since the band had left the stage and the crowd was still boiling over. The band walked back out and this time Tim was wearing an AC Slater-style red wrestling singlet, a black Liza Minnelli style wig and a Dracula cape. The second song into the encore was the epic anthem known as “Who Rocks the Party”. As the night drew to a close it was the crowd shouting along verses like, “Call the cops to hall us in / They’re already here / Up on the chandelier /This is the party of the year” that made me start to realize that the lyrics could quite literally be prophecy.

Les Savy Fav setlist – Echoplex 5-9-10
The Equestrian
Patty Lee
Appetites (New Song)
Yawn, yawn, yawn
In These Woods
Disco Drive
Outta Her (New Song)
Je T’Aime
Sweat Descends

Who Rocks The Party

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