The National
High Violet Tour 2010 Day 1: London

The whirlwind three-city, four day tour begins, leaving JFK 10PM Tuesday night, arriving London Heathrow 9:30AM the next day. 3 hours sleep.

8 hours on a cramped plane seat, several train rides and a short walk to our hotel with 20 pounds of photo/laptop equipment leaves my old-man back in tatters. A 2-hour nap and a first rate 1-hour massage at the swanky K-West Hotel rejuvenates in prep for last night’s official opening show in support of High Violet at the Electric Ballroom in CamdenArone and Aron of Brooklyn’s Buke + Gass open the show to a packed house. They rock and are such lovely hang-out partners. A must see, you hipster kids.

TN boys, crew and international moving travel entourage are bleary and worse for wear at the start. The band is still finding their purchase performing the new songs. Great presence, but the vocals are mixed too hot, the performance a might stiff. The audience predictably becomes livelier during the crowd-pleasing “Abel”, “Mr. November” and “Secret Meeting.”

Tonight’s sold-out highlight appearance at the venerable Royal Albert Hall should prove a different thing entirely. The stately 5000-seater will bring out the best in them, I’m sure.

Shot 600 frames with the new Nikon D300s rig. Not time to edit and prep for your viewing pleasure as of yet. For now, suffice with some shitty iPhone pix en route from Heathrow to the K-West and a bitsy smattering of live pics.

Off to the Tate Modern for the De Stijl exhibition. So many lines and squares. Yay. Then back to the K-West to purty-up for the show. At least three bands staying here, none as hot as TN. Ok, ‘cept one girl-band that are definitely hotter than the boys.

Tomorrow, off to Paris. The National is great and all, but Pavement is playing!

Real photos and more to come…