December 20, 2002

Something To Look Forward To

One of the wonderful things about living in New York City is being able to see so many bands perform each week. One recent Saturday, I could have seen The Detriot Cobras, Enon or Future Bible Heroes. I'd have to go out every other night (and often I have) in order to go to every single show that interested me.

The flipside of this live music blessing is the curse of the SOLD OUT show. Bands play NYC for a reason -- plenty of music fans here! Sometimes too many for me. Not only do I have to worry about getting advance tickets for maybe half the shows I want to see, but bands play larger venues here, which is a bit of a drag. So I often drive up to Boston to avoid the crowds and enjoy the intimacy of a smaller club. Though they played the exact same set both nights, seeing Wire at The Middle East was a completely different experience from seeing them at Irving Plaza.

The cavernous Irving Plaza has been on my mind lately, since that's probably the next step up for Interpol, whose kicked off the first of three sold-out shows at Bowery Ballroom last night. (While I missed that one, I will be there the next two nights.) I've actually been having a lot of fun checking out the eBay auctions and craigslist postings for tickets -- hell, I'll even admit I got rid of two unexpected extras that way, covering the cost of all the tickets I originally bought.

So I was scanning the listings on craigslist this afternoon when I stumbled across this posting. Wha? Interpol playing at Maxwell's? When was this announced? And how the hell can it be SOLD OUT already? @%^$^!

This bummed me out, first of all because I love Maxwell's. It's a small club that always seems to attract a good crowd, maybe because you gotta be a fan to make the trip out to Hoboken. It also happens to be the site of my first New York-area rock show (Marty Willson-Piper of The Church, in 1990), and I've been there more times than any other club around here in the many years since.

But first I needed to confirm this show was sold out. Since Maxwell's uses Ticketmaster (ugh), I went to their web site and did the usual drill... until I got to some page which said something like "to prevent computer software from ordering tickets, you must enter the code you see in the picture below into this box here." Except that the picture was broken, and when I tried to load the image I got an error. Grrr.

Next was calling Ticketmaster, being led through about five different automated phone system hoops by a robotic female voice that kept cheerily repeating "Interpol" and the show date. Small sliver of hope -- the system would tell me it's sold out... right, RIGHT? Then I punch in ticket quantities ("sorry, too many"), try again ("sorry"), then again ("we are transferring you..."). After five minutes on hold (could've been worse), I get a rep on the phone and repeat my request. "Yes, I see it here in the system. Interpol at Maxwell's on Wednesday, January 8th, correct?" YES. "One moment please." :: waiting :: "I'm sorry, but there are no more tickets available." Thank you Ticketmaster, for wasting 20 minutes of my time because you couldn't put a SOLD OUT notice on your lousy web site or in your phone system. Jesus.

Time for another tack. Called Maxwell's, got the recorded concert line message, which had no new news. But... It did remind me that one of their retail ticket outlets in Other Music. Maybe they'd have tickets? Worth a shot. So I headed downtown, braving the evening rush (next time I bitch about rock clubs being claustrophobic, I will remember My Subway Car the Sardine Can). Got to the store, went up to the counter. "You sell tickets for Maxwell's, right?" "Yes." "Would you happen to have any for Interpol, January 8th?" Guy behind counter pulls out the ticket cashbox to check. And I'm fully expecting him to tell me I'm out of luck, so when he pulls out a half-inch-thick stack of tickets, I'm taken aback. Right on!

So I got my tickets (happy happy joy joy), then proceeded to indulge my good mood by picking out a bunch of records and CDs, incl. a CD reissue of the first Durutti Column album and the Yo La Tengo Christmas CD EP that was given out at their Hanukkah shows a couple of weeks ago. I'd wanted to buy some of the new music on my shopping list, but it seemed the store was out of everything I was looking for -- new CDs by Radio 4, Hot Hot Heat, Franklin Bruno and Doves were nowhere to be found. Maybe I'll find 'em at Newbury Comics when I'm back in Boston next week.

Anyway, in case it didn't register with y'all, there are plenty of Interpol tickets available at Other Music, at least as of last night. So, New Yorkers, what are you waiting for?

Posted by nstop at December 20, 2002 02:49 PM


Post a comment


Email Address:



Remember info?