The National: I Turn My Camera On

Chamber-rock superstars the National were in town this holiday weekend for three (!) sold-out shows at the 9:30 club. Kyle Gustafson was there. The photographic proof is below. When J. Freedom saw the band back in 2007 he didn't exactly love it. Kyle offered up the following notes about the band's early show Sunday night.

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Three new songs -- "Runaway," "Vanderlylle" and "Blood Buzz." First two were slow, moody numbers, while "Blood Buzz" was more up-tempo and could have fit well on "Boxer."

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It was hot as [expletive] in the club.

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"All The Wine" wasn't on the set list but the crowd kept yelling out requests for it so they added it to the set at the end, in between "Apartment Story" and "Fake Empire." A pretty great 3 song suite to close out the main set.

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They are touring with a keyboardist and a three-piece horn section. The extra instruments added a lot to "Squalor Victoria" and "Fake Empire." And the drummer is totally underrated.

(More pictures after the jump.)

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By David Malitz |  May 25, 2009; 3:29 PM ET Live Last Night , Pictures
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I saw the same show as Kyle. The National exceeded my expectations. The setlist was well-balanced between lower-energy and higher-energy songs, building to a great climax with Fake Empire, and the individual performances were spot-on. It helped that the audience was the most polite and quiet I've ever seen (and heard) at a 9:30 Club show. The sound quality was excellent as well - nearly every word of the lead vocals came through loud and clear. Well done, everyone.

Posted by: SSMD1 | May 26, 2009 9:18 AM

I agree that one of the main things that caught me when I saw them last time was quality drumming. Their Monday set was excellent as well, and I think the band have really master the pacing on their set -- the whole night seemed to flow better than on their last tour.

Posted by: M__N | May 26, 2009 9:50 AM

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