Modest Mouse commanded a huge chill out section of people on blankets. It was stretching nearly to the beer hall.
But on the strength of a middling new record, Modest Mouse fans seem nostalgic. They want to hear the band’s (one?) radio jam, “Float On,” and some of them, with longer memories, want to hear the really old stuff.
Onstage, Modest Mouse mostly seem to be doing their normal thing. The band is always interesting, there’s banjo, cornet, violin, but it’s hard not to sense, for those who’ve followed them for years, that modest mouse don’t carry the same weight they once did, at least not this time out.
Lead singer Isaac Brock is still a source of tireless energy, and they always look to be having fun on stage. But there’s an essential tension in their music that often renders it in a darker energy. No easy anthems here.
“How are y’all doing?” Brock said at on point. He paused. “Where the f***’d you get a giant Gumby inflatable?” You could see its green head bobbing around. Man, half the stage banter at ACL is about the weird flags and icons out there floating around.