Here OK GO goes again
Just as innovative in the flesh as they are online
There were no treadmills or cars going through the musical obstacle courses on the stage, but American alternative rock band OK GO still delivered a thoroughly entertaining and visually appealing show that lived up to their innovative YouTube music video reputation.
The band rose to fame after their infamous treadmill video for “Here It Goes Again” hit Youtube. With over 25 million hits, the video and accompanying song has become a staple for the indie-pop group. Needless to say, there were high expectations of the band for this Calgary show.
The floor of MacEwan Ballroom at the University of Calgary was covered in a layer of multi-colored confetti shot by cannon fire multiple times throughout the show on March 27 which the crowd adored (but would not be fun for those cleaning afterwards).
Even with the multiple screens behind the musicians like a classic concert backdrop, there was an added transparent screen in front of the band that came and went depending on the song, adding mind-boggling visual layers. Beyond that, lead singer Damien Kulash had a GoPro perched atop his microphone that gave the audience a perfect view of his face while he sang to the crowd.
“Here It Goes Again,” “Needing/Getting,” “This Too Shall Pass” and “The Writing’s on the Wall” were only some of their classics that they could not get away with leaving off the setlist. Others, while not as as mainstream, were still exciting and dressed up with the confetti rockets shooting balls of paper rainbows in unison to the beat of the tunes.
It entirely depends on the individual whether or not it is entertaining or annoying to have the band members interact so much with the crowd, but it would be hard not to love the interaction from Kulash and Tim Nordwind (bass & vocals who’s visual appearance included a wonderfully bald head and thick-rimmed glasses).
Kulash took the time to take a few pictures on his phone and talk about how he was going to “Instagram the shit out of it” while going out into a mess of people for a bit. Both Kulash and Nordwind opened the floor up by picking raised hands to answer some questions. Although experiencing the music being played live may be the main reason most attendees came to the concert that evening, who wouldn’t love the witty dialogue and a chance to talk with the musicians themselves?
In the end, they certainly did live up to their reputation and the expectations of the roaring crowd. Kulash, Nordwind and the remaining members Dan Konopka (drums) and Andy Ross (guitar, keyboard and vocals) ended with a hilarious choreographed dance dressed in white jumpsuits. The dance made up for the fact that their entertaining innovations online couldn’t be recreated on stage (which is fair, considering those music videos are shot in one take and quite difficult to recreate).
They have brought their legions of fans along with them over the past 20 years, keeping them entertained with their recreations of the music video, exciting performances and impeccable audience interaction.
OK GO is proving they are here to stay.