[photo courtesy of Eardrum NYC]
We are fortunate the longtime friend of the site and part-time contributor neild was able to capture the Yo La Tengo Hanukkah Night 5 / Christmas Eve show this year.
As soon as I spotted Tara Key limbering up her guitar on Saturday, I had a good feeling about Night 5 of this year’s Yo La Tengo Hanukkah run. Having seen Tara many times with her excellent band Antietam, as well as sitting in with YLT this spring at the Bell House, I couldn’t have been more thrilled to see her introduced as the night’s guest guitarist while Ira Kaplan makes his deliberate return from the disabled list. The band started slow, literally, with their quiet version of “Big Day Coming,” the beautiful “Crying of Lot G” (one of the best in YLT’s mini-genre of domestic-argument songs), and a weird, droney, slowed-down version of “Upside Down” from 1991’s May I Sing With Me. It was all lovely and enjoyable … and then the band kicked it into another gear, starting with the three-guitar version of “Double Dare” (James McNew switching from bass to acoustic guitar), which was only one of the best versions of that song I’ve yet heard live. Things only got better from there: Georgia was absolutely on fire behind the drums (when Hubley’s on fire, no one can touch her!), and Ira and Tara’s guitars intertwined magically on the rocked-out songs that followed, especially a brilliant “Decora” (cf. “Double Dare” re: “best versions ever”). The main set culminated in *another* version of “Big Day Coming,” followed by YLT’s cover of “Little Honda,” (streaming below) which devolved into a noise jam to end all noise jams that has my ears still ringing 24 hours later. Add in an encore that featured comedian Jon Glaser performing Bob Seger’s “Night Moves” as his character from “Delocated” – it turns out that this is a song that’s always cried out to be sung through a voice modulator – and it was an epic, epic night, even by Maxwell’s Hanukkah standards.
(For still more on the night’s festivities, check out the writeup by Tim Harris of Antietam on yolatengo.com)
The show was recorded with Core Sound binaural mics, mounted on a stand at the corner of the Maxwell’s sound booth, fed into a Microphone Madness battery box (with moderate bass rolloff) and then to an iRiver 320 running Rockbox. Big thanks to Carson for all his help, and both Carson and Mark for creating a great mix that brought out the nuances of the quiet material while keeping the high-decibel songs from being reduced to white noise. (“Little Honda” excepted, and that was intentional.) I’m going to stop gushing now, and go listen to this show again. You should do the same, if you know what’s good for you.
Stream “Little Honda”:
Direct download of complete show in MP3 files (HERE)
Download the Complete show in FLAC [HERE].
Note: All of the material on this site is offered with artist permission, free to fans, at our expense. The only thing we ask is that you download the material directly from this site, rather than re-posting the direct links or the files on other sites without our permission. Please respect our request.
Yo La Tengo
Hanukkah Night 5
Hoboken, NJ USA
Digital Master Audience Recording
Core Sound Binaural Microphones > MM Battery Box > iRiver 320 (Rockbox) > 16bit 44.1kHz wav > Soundforge (level adjustments, set fades, downsample) > CDWave 1.95 (tracking) > TLH > flac (320 MP3 and Tagging via Foobar)
Recorded by neild
Produced by nyctaper
[Total Time 1:33:08]
01 Big Day Coming (slow)
02 Stockholm Syndrome
03 The Crying of Lot G
05 Upside Down
06 Beanbag Chair
07 If It’s True
08 I’m On My Way
09 Double Dare
10 Five-Cornered Drone
11 Orange Song [Antietam]
13 Big Day Coming (fast)
14 Little Honda
15 [encore break]
16 Rock and Roll Santa [Jan Terri]
17 [banter – Jon intro]
18 Night Moves [Bob Seger]
19 Yellow Sarong [The Scene Is Now]