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Five thoughts: The Psychedelic Furs and the Church (September 8, Brooklyn Bowl)

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Photo: Wayne Posner, Kabik Photo Group
Jason Harris

1. I have a theory about first wave bands and why it’s now a golden age to see them in concert as they get closer to the end: They’ve been out of the mainstream for so long, their livelihoods depend so much on touring, so they’ve become live monsters. The Psychedelic Furs are no exception; Tuesday at Brooklyn Bowl they delivered a tight 80-minute set, full of vigor and joy.

The Psychedelic Furs at Brooklyn Bowl

2. Choose your hit. “Heaven” came out of the gates rapturously. “Love My Way” took things to another level with excellent keyboard work from Amanda Kramer. “Heartbreak Beat” lived up to its lyrics. And it feels like love. “Pretty in Pink” was a worthy main-set closer. If only Molly Ringwald would have walked onstage unsure of herself, not realizing just how pretty she is. Isn’t she?

3. Speaking of movies, if lead singer Richard Butler wasn’t a real person, he’d clearly be a Gary Oldman creation. Besides their physical resemblance, Butler phrases things in such a unique way—somehow managing to emphasize two syllables at once. He’s as riveting and quirky as his actor counterpart.

4. The Church contributed a solid opening set. “Metropolis” is as catchy now as when it originated. And “Under the Milky Way” drew an obligatory sea of phones, recording the forever-great song en masse.

5. The Church also ended its performance in the strangest way I can ever remember. Playing “Miami” felt anti-climatic until the literal breakdown at the end. As The Church jammed, drummer Tim Powles continued pounding the skins ... as they were removed from the stage. The tune kept going, and Powles kept playing what little kit he had left.

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