This past week The National played four nights in a row at the Chicago Theatre!
I was fortunate enough to see them two more times - my 7th and 8th shows overall.
(If money wasn’t an object, you know I’d be there all four nights.)
TUESDAY, APRIL 15
I just want to go over my entire day because it was so great.
First, I took my mom out for her birthday dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in the city (Quartino’s).
(Sidenote: They always have TV’s playing a classic Italian film there, and 8 1/2 was on that evening.)
Afterwards, I found out that Criterion is releasing their Jacques Demy box set in July!! Just in time for the summer B&N sale!
Then, it was concert time. I had seats in the balcony for the first night and the main floor for the second night.
Daughter was the opening band, and they really impressed me. (I’ve seen a lot of dud opening acts over the years going to various concerts.)
Tuesday’s set list was the standard affair of Trouble Will Find Me / High Violet songs for a while until …
THEY PLAYED LEMONWORLD!
(Since you probably don’t know, Lemonworld is my favorite song by The National - other than Apartment Story - but they rarely play it. This was only the second time they’ve played it since 2011, and I’ve never heard it live.)
I think I nearly went into shock because at this point, I just wasn’t expecting it.
And after Lemonworld, they played Abel, Slow Show, and Ada (with a Sufjan Stevens’ “Chicago” outro) all in a row.
Other highlights included Hard to Find, About Today, and Learning.
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 16
When The National opened the show with Start a War, I knew I was in for a great night.
Then, they played Wasp Nest, All the Wine, Abel, Apartment Story, and Green Gloves all in a row. Mind blown.
During the encore break, the guys next to me and I decided to go up to the very front because why not? Nobody was going to kick us out with only four songs to go.
So, I got the best of both worlds that night. The marvelous acoustics of the Chicago Theatre and being up front like I would have been for a general admission show.
To summarize: The National is my favorite band. Can you tell?
Hervé Chigioni and his graphic designer Gilles Frappier have based the poster design for the 67th Festival de Cannes on a photogram taken from Federico Fellini’s 8½, which was presented in the Official Selection in 1963.
In Marcello Mastroianni and Federico Fellini, we celebrate a cinema that is free and open to the world, acknowledging once again the artistic importance of Italian and European cinema through one of its most stellar figures.
“The way he looks at us above his black glasses draws us right in to a promise of global cinematographic happiness,” explains the poster’s designer. “The happiness of experiencing the Festival de Cannes together.”
In his films, Marcello Mastroianni continued to encapsulate everything that was most innovative, nonconformist and poetic about cinema. On seeing the poster for the first time, Chiara Mastroianni, the actor’s daughter, said simply: “I am very proud and touched that Cannes has chosen to pay tribute to my father with this poster. I find it very beautiful and modern, with a sweet irony and a classy sense of detachment. It’s really him through and through!” — Cannes 2014
"Werner Herzog and I were talking about maybe doing a video, he wanted to do a video with The National, and we were really excited about that, even though it never ended up happening. His idea, he said, was [Werner Herzog impression], “I want to put the whole band on a live volcano, very close to the lava. I want it to be very dangerous for you, and I want to see you try to play your instruments while the lava is all around you.” And we were like, “That sounds awesome!” I don’t know about the logistics of making that work, but he definitely wanted us to be in serious danger, just to see if a band could actually play a song while lava is surrounding them. "