OMG, SLC: LCD @ MSG

I love music. And I love it even more when I can see it performed live. 

In the case of LCD Soundsystem, I missed the boat. Their last show was on April 2, 2011 at Madison Square Garden. Friends who were at the farewell concert said it was incredible…and it was. How do I know? Movie magic!

During this year’s Sundance Film Festival, John was lucky enough to get tickets to Shut Up and Play the Hits, a documentary about that final show at MSG. Last January, we boogied in our theater seats during the movie and have talked about it since. When John read that the Salt Lake Film Society was screening the movie last night, it was a no-brainer: DATE NIGHT.

It’s interesting to note that the film is just being released around the country, and the showings are selling out immediately. Tickets are in such high demand in some areas (like NYC) that they are selling on Craigslist for $150 each. In SLC, there were not only plenty of tickets available on the day of the show, but we paid $8.75. Score!

We decided to hit a nearby restaurant for some appetizers and cocktails before the movie, which was showing at the Tower Theater in the uber-hip ‘9th & 9th’ neighborhood of Salt Lake. The houses nearby are adorable and artsy. It’s one of the best ‘hoods in town, with awesome shops, restaurants, yoga and pilates studios, and the Tower. It’s the kind of theater that has midnight showings of The Rocky Horror Picture Show or Goonies. It’s pretty dingy and outdated, but it’s a Salt Lake classic.

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Our pre-movie happy hour site was Pago, a cool spot with an urban vibe that focuses on farm-to-table cuisine. We learned that a new chef had taken over about 4 months ago.

He nailed it. 

We had intended to share a few appetizers and have a drink, then head to the flick. We ended up sharing a starter, a salad, two entrees, a cocktail, and a bottle of wine. It was all delicious!

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Being our first day with MEAT back on the menu, we ordered a burger. Everything was so tasty, and our service was impeccable. John mentioned that the burger was a tad on the gray side for medium rare (which was requested), and there was a little mix-up on the wine. Not only did our server comp his burger, but she made other adjustments and brought out dessert, packed up to-go with forks to enjoy in the movie. (FYI: It was homemade s’mores, and it was gone before I thought to take a photo.) If you go to Pago, request Shannon. She was awesome.

We knew what to expect with the movie, having seen it just 6 months ago. As the theater filled in, the excitement in the theater grew. Being edgy, the Tower’s “please turn off your cell phone” preview film was a hilarious twist on the retro snack-bar promo. A speed metal band consisting of a twisted pretzel and other angry snacks shouted a song about “Don’t talk about the plot!” and “Don’t kick the seat in front of you!” It was hilarious!

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And the movie itself? Shut Up and Play the Hits vacillates between concert footage and the next morning as the head of the band, James Murphy, soaks in the reality that the band is through. It’s pretty cool to see him leading 18,000 fans in a raging party of dance and light, and then see him at home, making an espresso and talking to his chubby Boston terrier. The music makes it hard to sit still in a theater. So we didn’t.

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I can’t believe some of my friends were at that show in person. I also can’t believe I’ve seen the documentary about it twice and they still can’t get tickets!

After the movie, we walked out into the summer sunshine that last until after 9pm here. We strolled through the neighborhood, enjoying the flowers, before heading up the canyon toward home.

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It was quite a date night- a little NYC in SLC, dancing to LCD while they played at the MSG.

I would have paid the $150.

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