Sold out crowd? Check. Confetti canons? Check. Cover of a Kelly Clarkson song? Check. Tokyo Police Club had these essential rock show items covered when they strutted their Canadian stuff to a packed house at the Bowery Ballroom last night.
The foursome came out guns a blazin’ ready to play some “oldies” (“Nature of the Experiment”) and some “real oldies” (“Be Good”), while mixing in everyone’s favorite songs from its two full-length albums. Even though singer David Monks professed that the group hasn’t played many live shows since starting work on its new album, the guys of Tokyo Police Club were on point. The band’s incredibly catchy keyboard and guitar riffs had everyone head-bobbing, while some rowdier members of the crowd fist-pumped and almost jumped off the balcony in excitement. There was rarely a lull in the set, with each high-speed song melding into the next without fault, Monks mildly gruff vocals complimenting the typically higher register of the guitar and keys.
Monks, 24, has the face and mannerisms of a lanky teenager, which was somewhat hilarious but mostly charming as he confidently yet casually worked the crowd. It’s not as if he had to work hard to win them over, as they were more than willing to agree to any of his requests right from the start, but his dedication was impressive and unexpected none the less. It was like watching a nerdier version of Mick Jagger hop around the stage. He clapped, they clapped; he pointed, they reached for his hand; he said “sing along,” and the floor would shake from the sheer volume of people responding. By the end of the night, not one person was standing still, causing the floor level to look like a giant amoeba, pulsing to the infectious beat.
The show capped off with the anthem “Cheer It On” from the band’s first EP A Lesson In Crime, and as confetti canons exploded from all corners of the ballroom, Monk began the chorus, turned the mic to the crowd, and gave the signal. A collective wail of “Tokyo Police Club!” reverberated through the room, just in case anyone was wondering who was on stage.