I haven't posted a log on here for quite some time, but I felt I should retain some sort of cyber record for this event, so the following is essentially an edited multi-forum post.
First & foremost: this will always go down as the night that I grabbed Maya Arulpragasam's ass.
No, this wasn't because I was amongst the great unwashes masses that stormed the stage during "Bird Flu". I didn't go up onstage at all (I could barely move my leg at that point, due to a fractured ankle sustained days before...I would have had to climb over the barrier...no thanks). Plus, it was pathetic seeing all the hipsters crowding her. And whoever it was that insisted on trying to digitally capture themselves with Maya onstage was especially irritiating. Stop trying to have a Myspace moment. Just stop & live in the moment, for once! Not everything has to be proven online later (except for this last.fm blog entry, of course). :p
Anyways...the ass grabbing.
The only reason I even experienced this incidental bodily contact was because she essentially fell on me when she stagedived at the end of the set. I merely acted impulsively, to be completely honest. She was inches above my ahead - her back and her ass, specifically - so I simply tried to anchor her, but unintentionally managed to cop a feel. The opportunity, literally speaking, fell into my lap, ha. Although, after the fact, I was like "Whoa, I just grabbed Maya's ass." IT WAS TO PROTECT HER FROM FALLING, DAMN IT. It was one 95 lb female out to save another from a nasty spill (naturally, other people steadied her as well, but it took them long enough for their protective instinct to kick in - I guess they were too worried about getting that perfectly well-composed, yet spontaneous shot to post on Myspace).
I didn't go backstage to meet her because the show ran really late like as people have noted. My friend & I had to haul ass to get the train home (and ended up getting a cab part of the way because my ankle was useless & we were running out of time).
It was a great performance on her part, but I agree with the many complaints regarding the ridiculously long wait. wtf? A 2 hour opening DJ set (even from a former member of Blaqstarr?) I was livid by 9:30...and I am still unsure how I survived ANOTHER hour wait following that!
The venue's locale was hideous, as was the wardrobe of 95% of concertgoers, yet still, I left feeling elated & more than a little horny. I'm just kidding. It will still always be funny to remember that I accidentally fondled Maya Arulpragasam. In fact, that entire 30 second incident probably was more memorable than the concert itself, which isn't to say it wasn't a solid show. It was - it was just riddled with delays & bad vibes. To express my final sentiment more accurately: I left the show satisfied, but extremely sore & swollen.
I'll have to look around for the setlist - all I remember was that she opened with "Bamboo Banga", played most of both albums, and that the encore was "Amazon" & "URAQT". I liked her video projections - it was more than I expected. I got some decent photos (I was in the second row, left-hand side). For the record, the most annoying people in the entire venue (those who booed the booers during the DJ set!) were situated immediately right of me. I was ready to slaughter them all.
OH BTW....THAT WHOLE INTERLUDE WHERE THE LIL' MAMA CLONE PERFORMED WAS SO UNNECESSARY. Actually everything except M.I.A. herself was expendable, although I found Afrikan Boy's endless enthusiasm kind of charming.
M.I.A. = beautiful, talented, engaging, has an ass you could bounce a quarter off of & make change.
The venue = horribly conceived - a sad attempt to recreate The Hacienda. But this is upper Hell's Kitchen - the armpit of Manhattan. It is a cultural wasteland - let's not use the vacuum to try to create a newly ordained hipster zone.
The crowd = disgusting. Terrible clothes & worse manners. Also, seething with racial & socioeconomic conflict. I didn't know a DJ set could provoke racially charged commentary between concertgoers, but you learn something new with every show. Apparently, "all the white people" were sick of waiting for M.I.A. because "they have to go to school tomorrow". (Well, some of us do!)
The wait = horrendous & mysteriously never justified. If I wanted to hear shitty reggaeton for 2 hours (felt like 20), I could just stand outside a Jamba Juice on Second Ave. What the hell? God, I wish we could have had The Go! Team open.
My ankle = dead. I had screamed out in sudden pain at various points that evening - during our brief stop at Virgin Megastore, en route to Terminal 5, when the bitch in front of me STOMPED ON MY LEFT FOOT WITH HER ENORMOUS IMPOSTER HEELS, pretty much every 5 minutes post-performance.