Thursday, August 24


On a perfect summer day like yesterday, what's better than sitting poolside? How about inside a pool...a former community pool that when it was functioning, held nearly 8,000 swimming bodies in it? uh...ew. and wha? that's exactly what i thought as I was heading towards McCarren Park Pool, which this summer, has been re-fashioned as THE HIP and happening outdoor venue for hip and happening greenpoint, brooklyn. you enter through a large, worn brick structure before you come face-to-face with the Gi-NORMOUS (and un-filled) skeleton of a pool. the inside is all chipped concrete lined with plenty of graffitti art. it really is HUGE. supposedly on weekends, they have free 'pool parties' which includes live DJs, loads of sweaty dancing bodies, and a slip 'n slide-- i MUST get myself to one of these...

i was at McCarren Pool for one reason only: The Shins. to say i was excited would be an understatement. yeppers. they are definitely one of my most favorite bands i wouldn't miss a chance to see them live. here, the audience sits INSIDE the pool-- you can bring blankets to picnic but there's also brooklyn brewery beers and burgers and dogs for sale to munch on. and, this place is seriously hipster heaven. W kept egging me on to admit that yes, 4 out of 5 guys attending the event would qualify as 'my type.' perhaps he's right...but they all seemed either VERY young or VERY taken or (possibly) VERY gay. sigh.

The Shins, on the otherhand, sounded great (although the acoustics are iffy--it can get REALLY loud). fortunately, The Shins are pretty mellow-- although the boys totally rocked out on some of their tunes, which included a few new tracks from their upcoming album (they promised it will be out by very very early 2007). James Mercer, the lead singer, is sparse with the audience chatter (read: he doesn't chat), saving his unique, beautiful voice for singing only. a souped of version of my personal favorite 'Gone for Good' gave the anti-love song a different edge. And an almost elegiac, rendition of 'Young Pilgrims,' which Mercer sang alone under a single spotlight, was haunting. now the funniest part of their set-- while singing their hit 'New Slang'-- i could tell Mercer looked distracted and almost fact, he had to stop because he lost track of the lyrics. laughing it off and attempting a re-do, he stopped again, this time cracking up and asking if someone would just come up and sing it. it seems, post-Garden State fame, he can't seem to recall the lyrics to a track he's been forced to play a bajillion times. W and I started calling out Natalie (as in Portman's) name to see if she could help fill in the gaps. there was no answer. The Shins, of course, redeemed themselves with a proper re-do during their encore. me suspects they went back to review the lyrics...haha.

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