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September 8 - Mansfield, MA

All Oddball Fest gigs are here as well as a couple of warm-up ones.

by Amily » Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:35 pm

Venue: Comcast Center (seats 19,900)


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by emira » Sat Sep 21, 2013 12:56 pm

by OddballFest


Hurt Feelings

review in Time Out

- Kristen Schaal warmed the audience with jokes fans will have heard but really set them off with a Flashdance fantasia, in which she pranced about in leotard and tights to “Maniac” by Michael Sembello, like a little girl twirling in her bedroom alone (or, in this case, in the company of Flight of the Conchords' Jemaine Clement, who doused her with water and followed her lead while in neon-green ’80s gear).


Flight of the Conchords emerged to rousing applause, packing their studied set full of little moments that sold their songs of seduction and misunderstanding. It was impossible to look away from the massive projection screens in order to catch the nuances of the New Zealanders’ expressions—e.g., the anguish in Bret McKenzie’s face while playing a forgotten paramour in FOTC staple "Jenny," the exaggerated swagger and sexy lip quiver during “Fucking on the Ceiling.”) Clement also hit the silly-stupid spot when he whipped out a flute during one song and mimed playing it while whistling into the mike instead.

If Oddball is a “festival for people who quit their TV shows,” as Clement put it, the most deference (and reverence) was provided to the long, lost Dave Chappelle, who made a big, theatrical entrance: His silhouette first projected against a scrim, which dropped dramatically to reveal the man smoking a cigarette in a tight, black leather jacket. “Welcome to the Dave Chappelle meltdown,” he announced.

The specter of Hartford—that is, a difficult set on August 29 that ended with Chappelle marking out his remaining time onstage, refusing to perform while getting booed—loomed throughout; it was never a question whether or not he’d win the hearts of Camden (he entered to a standing ovation): It’s as if the Hartford incident served as a kind of fuel, a bit of adversity to focus his frustrations. He took on the mayor for dissing him on TMZ, had “Fuck Hartford” T-shirts made and wished the city—presumably, the respectful fans who were also part of the audience that night—all kinds of hurt. In a levelheaded moment, he confessed the bottom line: The crowd was “drunk” and he had a “bad attitude.” “But,” he continued, “Controversy makes my machine work.”


Camden, what Chappelle announced was his “favorite city so far” on the tour, was the anti-Hartford: It was attentive, effusive and pampered Chappelle in a way that relaxed him; he even invited a woman onstage to give her a hug. Whether this was his way of making amends, or showing the crowd he could peacefully handle a bit of audience interaction, it didn't matter: Dave delivered and the crowd responded.

Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement of the Conchords turned in a relaxed set of songs. They joined in the Hartford-related fun, trying to talk to one of the security guards in front of the stage about how he’d stop people from sending a text. There were signs posted on the back of many of the seats stating the rules against using any electronic devices, and they pruned the audience like a bonsai tree of anyone flashing an active screen. The security guard was too intent on his job to open a dialogue with the Conchords, though. “It’s more threatening not knowing,” Bret quipped.

Their “Song for Sally” ended with McKenzie and Clement converging on a female audience member and singing an awkward rendition of Radiohead’s “Creep.” Their set was peppered with crowd-pleasers from their HBO series, including “Robots” and a medley of “Hurt Feelings” and “Hiphopopotamus vs. Rhymenoceros.”

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