Calvin Harris is as charismatic as he is tall. At 6'5", that's a fair amount of charm. This was Calvin's U.S. debut, his album I Created Disco hit our stores the day before -- though it was obvious nearly everyone at the Mercury Lounge was well-versed with the songs and ready to dance. He didn't disappoint the crowd.
And for someone of his height, he isn't gangly in the least, rocking overtop of his keyboard, and bouncing around the stage, fully in control of his limbs. Obviously, he's got control of his music. This was one of the most fun shows I've been to in a long time. I wasn't the only one. The only quibble was he could've played maybe a bit longer, but the eight-song set hit all the album's highlights. I stood on the stage left couch and watched at least the first two-third of the room bounce the entire time.
On that note, I'm actually kind of sick of hearing Brits (or Scots) say, "I hear NYC audiences never dance. They just stand there cross-armed." That may have been five years ago, when only journalists or serious Anglophiles knew about US debuts of UK acts, but in this Internet era, shows are filled with real fans. Calvin said he was shocked by the audience's excitement, but I knew it would be good. And every time I thought, "OK, that's the song everyone's going to go bonkers for," they got more psyched for the next one. Setlist was, though not in this order; "Merry Making at My Place," "Colours," "Neon Rocks," "This is the Industry," "Acceptable in the '80s," "The Girls," "Disco Heat" and "Vegas."
MP3: Calvin Harris - Vegas
A few more photos on Flickr. Loads of blogs were there, as you'd expect, including Music Snobbery, Disco Nap, The Music Slut, TheMusic.fm, My Headphones Y'all, Ugly Floral Blouse, Music for Robots (who DJ'd) and I'm sure more. I also shot some video, just little tidbits this time which I compiled together -- "Acceptable in the '80s," "This is the Industry," and "Vegas":
One final addendum. As grabbed a bite at Katz's before the show, and on my way out I saw Calvin and a friend staring at the menu with bewilderment. I had to do my part as a good New Yorker and said, "get the pastrami sandwich." He and his friend were leaning toward a hot dog, but I said if you're in Katz's for the first time there's only one thing to order. Later, as he walked past me toward the stage, he stopped and said it was an "ace choice"... or something. Calvin Harris -- fueled by Katz's.