They Might Be Giants: The best band you've never seen
Published: Tuesday, April 3, 2001
Updated: Sunday, February 15, 2009 19:02
They Might Be Giants, a moniker that presumably derives from the delusions of Don Quixote, has been around for quite some time without popular recognition. Two men, John Linnell on vocals, accordion and keyboard and John Flansburgh on vocals and guitar, make up the core and foundation of TMBG. The little mainstream exposure that They Might Be Giants has gotten comes from two songs featured in a "Tiny Toons Adventures" cartoon ("Particle Man" and "Istanbul") and most recently the intro song from Fox's sitcom "Malcolm in the Middle" ("You're not the boss of me now..."). While the masses might be Giant-less, the underground cult following is larger than you might think. TMBG has roughly ten full-length albums out with one on the way this summer.
They were the headliners for Fri., March 24 at Hard Rock Live. The opening band that night was a group by the name of OK GO, which was heard from the crowd more as a request to the band than it was a chant to them. With the exception of the spirited bass player, OK GO was a severe let down. Hawking their CD, which boasted a whole three songs, it was the common belief that the majority of their set was made up on the spot. If you ever get the opportunity to go see this band, refuse!
With the OK GO disappointment, the arrival of the headliners was made so much sweeter by a full out rock opening complete with confetti cannon. Kicking it from the get go and keeping their stride throughout their hour and a half set, TMBG showed fans what a real live show should be like. Flansburgh's witty banter amplified the bands' already excellent crowd interaction and had fans eating out of their hands. Also, never to be called stale, TMBG mixed it up with a kick ass drum solo, wonderful bass solo and, believe it or not, a glockenspiel. Without a new record to pimp, TMBG was able to play many of the songs that gained them their fan base in the first place, such songs as "The Sun Song," "Subliminal," "Fingertips" and "Actual Size." These classics were a well-received surprise to all in attendance and not a foot in the place was still nor a head in the crowd not a-bobbing. Finally coming to the close of a wonderful set, They Might Be Giants capped the night off with two (count them, two) encores, answering the screaming pleas of fans not yet satiated. All in all, it was a terrific show that left no one wanting for anything but more.
They Might Be Giants is assuredly a band worth getting to know better.