Modest Mouse Have Them Dancing at Celebrate Brooklyn

July 23rd, 2015

Modest Mouse – Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Park Bandhsell – July 22, 2013

Modest Mouse – Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Park Bandhsell – July 22, 2013
After opening their sold-out show at Celebrate Brooklyn at the Prospect Park Bandshell
last night with the rallying call of “Fire It Up,” Modest Mouse frontman Isaac Brock announced that he had some minor concerns about playing the show. As it turns out, he
had just sprained his index finger. “How’d I do that?” he mused aloud. “Carelessness.” Brock’s candor was fitting, considering the tone of sarcasm and detachment that permeates many of the group’s lyrics, from their first album in 1996 to their latest release, Strangers to Ourselves. Modest Mouse’s performance of songs like “Tiny Cities Made of Ashes,” “Bury Me with It,” “Out of Gas” and “King Rat” nicely conveyed this attitude.

Of course, it’s not all aloofness and irony with Modest Mouse—their catalog includes many moments that skew toward sincere. Last night’s rendition of “Dramamine,” from the band’s first official release, This Is a Long Drive for Someone with Nothing to Think About, was clearly an emotional touchstone for the crowd, as was the sweet and simple new song “Coyotes,” and “3rd Planet,” from 2000’s The Moon & Antarctica. But Modest Mouse didn’t shy away from playing one of their most upbeat songs, “Float On,” the sonic equivalent of a pep talk.

Despite Brock’s injury, he admirably played through, and if anything, alongside his shambolic energy and wacky banter, it added to the overall experience of watching this singular performer. As if to get in one last barb, during the spirited performance of “Paper Thin Walls” in the encore, Brock and the band abruptly stopped halfway into it. “A new song or finish this song?” asked Brock. “The second half is exactly the same as the first half,” he pointed out. And, without waiting for a consensus, the band picked up where they’d left off, and the crowd resumed dancing. —Alena Kastin | @AlenaK

Photos courtesy of Jeremy Ross |