Photos by G.
Gotye is having quite a year. The Belgian-Australian singer (born Wouter “Wally” DeBacker) sold out New York’s Radio City Music Hall on September 25, 2012. A year ago, he was performing in much smaller venues and then his song “Somebody That I Used To Know,” became a massive worldwide hit. The singer, whose name is pronounced “go-tee-ay,” was backed by a 4 piece band and a massive (and I mean massive) screen that showed awesome visuals for the entire duration of the show.
Although the show was sold out, it appeared that the audience half expected him to play his biggest song on repeat for the entire show. After each song, courteous applause could be heard, but people didn’t really “lose their shit” until “Somebody That I Used to Know,” came on. Sadly, that was towards the end of the show, but better late than never!
Gotye’s hour and a half set featured nearly every track off his breakthrough album “Making Mirrors,” with the exception of “Don’t Worry, We’ll be Watching You” and “I Feel Better,” which was a surprise to me because that song to me sounds like a good choice for a single. He also dove into his back catalog (even though his earlier albums are still not available on CD in the US) for songs like “Hearts A Mess” and “Night Drive.”
There were a lot of unusual instruments utilized during the show and Gotye seemed to take great pleasure in introducing each one and rather than tell stories behind the songs, he told stories about the instruments. Gotye also played many of the instruments and he rotated around playing drums, percussion or keyboards.
One of the funniest parts of the night to me was when a long intro to “Somebody That I Used to Know” was played. The song wasn’t instantly recognizable to the crowd, but a sample of the background vocals was played and it became clear to me that all hell was about to break loose. It finally gave way to the lead line when all of a sudden, a sea of iPhones came out and hit record as quickly as they could find their camera app. When the 2nd verse, which is normally sung by Kimbra started, another singer came out and it seems very doubtful that the audience knew the difference, which is a pity because Kimbra’s presence was missed greatly by me.
It will be curious to see how his career plays out because he is certainly talented enough and he has many songs that are extremely catchy. But as we know so well, the masses are asses and Gotye could likely become a one hit wonder and/or somebody that we used to know.
See the set list after the jump.