I saw Mogwai today. Very mixed feelings about the show. It was fucking awesome, on the one hand - they opened with “Yes! I Am a Long Way From Home”, and I was instantly in a state of total bliss; and they did a shortened version of “Mogwai Fear Satan” that was absolutely blazing; and they closed with “Ratts of the Capital” from the new album, which was similarly ass-kicking. The band’s famed use of dynamics - beautiful, quiet melodies contrasted with brutal distorted noise - translates surprisingly well into a live setting. The crowd was nearly as quiet as the crowds at Godspeed You Black Emperor shows, allowing the quieter sections to really shine.
The only real problem was, the set they played was only like 70 minutes long. Pretty fucking shitty, if you ask me. And most of the songs they played were on the short side, no more than 5-6 minutes for the most part; even “Mogwai Fear Satan” was truncated big-time. And there was no “My Father, My King” to close things out, which I was really hoping for. No “Christmas Steps”… not even “Like Herod”, which I’m told is a concert staple. These aren’t really legitimate complaints I suppose, especially since I really like the band’s latest two albums, Rock Action and Happy Songs for Happy People, from which much of the show was drawn. Still, I couldn’t help but be very disappointed with the lack of length, both in terms of individual songs and of the set as a whole.