The final Celebrate Brooklyn! concert at the Prospect Park Bandshell brought Australian dance-rock outfit Cut Copy in for a rocking evening on a delightfully temperate summer evening. By the time I arrived, openers Midnight Magic had already vanished without air and this summer’s breakthrough dance-rock act Foster the People were closing out their set. Their defining hit, “Pumped Up Kicks”, blasted through the air onto the dance-happy crowd. Foster then went into a story about meeting Rivers Cuomo of Weezer at a show and noted that the band recently covered their song. Returning the favor, Foster faithfully covered “Say it Ain’t So” before going into their last song, the mighty “Helena Beat”.
With the dance party temporarily at rest, the audience quickly swarmed to get food and beer so they could return to the tightly packed area in front of the stage for a close up view of Cut Copy. The four-piece outfit from Melbourne has been touring this year in support of their third album, Zonoscope, the follow up to their tremendous In Ghost Colours. Founder Dan Whitford is the lead vocalist and played guitar and keys while, behind him, Mitchell Scott hustled at the drums On either side of the stage, Tim Hoey contributed additional guitar and samples and Ben Browning slapped the bass. Their tour brought them back to New York City so they could see yet again how receptive a New York City audience could be.
The opening song “Feel the Love” served the mood for the evening well—the reciprocity of the audience’s energy fueled the band and the anticipation for the lights and music drove the crowd to their limits. Next up was “Take Me Over”, the blissful track from the new album that is a favorite of many. I hadn’t anticipated this so early in the set and, I didn’t get the full on enjoyment out of it as I snapped pictures, but the close up privilege of the photo pit made up for it. Soon after, the band introduced “Hanging onto Every Heartbeat”, indicating it was the first ever live performance of the song.
Almost relentlessly, Cut Copy utilized guitars and synths to fan the audience’s energy. When the band began teasing out “Lights and Music”, they were simply adding a catalyst to the mix in order to generate the first explosive reaction. This track and “Hearts on Fire” are the two best known Cut Copy songs so it was no surprise that the latter received a fantastic response as well.
The energetic crowd had an example to lead them. Whitford is one of the more animated front-men in recent memory. His arms thrust forth regularly and his hair jostled up and down as he glided across the stage or when he mashed his keyboard. Before the end of the night, Whitford had been won over by New York and suggested the band might just move to the City. I’m sure this statement had been hyperbole, though I cross my fingers and hope otherwise. A tough Brooklyn audience will surely welcome Cut Copy back to take them out of the concrete jungle another night.
1. Feel The Love
2. Take Me Over
3. Where I’m Going
4. Hanging Onto Every Heartbeat
5. So Haunted
6. Corner of the Sky
7. Lights and Music
8. Blink & You’ll Miss a Revolution
9. Pharaohs & Pyramids
11. Hearts on Fire
12. Sun God
13. Need You Now
14. Out There on the Ice