by: Daniel O’Neill ’21 A&E Staff
On Dec. 31, thousands of fans packed into Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn to see The Strokes perform their New Year’s Eve set. For many of the fans, this concert was the first time seeing The Strokes in quite a while. The band took a major hiatus in the 2010s because they have been touring and recording since 2001. The band’s last album release, Comedown Machine, was in 2013. Their most recent release was in 2016 with their EP Future Present Past. To say the least, this New Year’s Eve celebration with the band’s reunion in their home of New York City was extremely anticipated.
Their setlist was unique from the beginning. They started with “Heart in a Cage,” followed by “You Only Live Once.” These two songs gave them continued fame in 2006 after a three-year hiatus. The crowd was fully invested after these two classics were played. From then on out, lead singer Julian Casablancas used his charm and wit to keep the audience engaged as The Strokes had somewhat long periods between songs.
They played “Reptilia” as time was winding down towards midnight. With minutes left, they invited the opening acts, Mac Demarco and Hinds, onto the stage. When the ball dropped on the live video feed and the new year started, The Strokes played their own rendition of “Auld Lang Syne” to celebrate. Immediately following that, the members left the stage and waited to come out for a rather lengthy and powerful encore. This is when the true Billboard hits like “Last Nite” and “Someday” were played by the band.
The most important and noteworthy part of the concert was the encore. One of the songs, called “Modern Girls and Old Fashion Men,” had been released in 2004. The next song, however, was an entirely brand-new song called “Ode to the Mets,” which showed the growth of the band in their songwriting. The Strokes’ principal songwriter and frontman, Casablancas, has taken a deeper and more detailed approach to songwriting, seen in their newest song played at their New Year’s Eve concert in Brooklyn, which is a slower song compared to their typical style.
After the audience got a taste for the new Strokes, Casablancas hinted at a new album release for the band. Their first major work since 2013, the rock industry is excited to see the ways that The Strokes have changed. There seems to be immense growth and endurance in Casablancas’ act, and the rest of the band is near perfection in concert. Like many other rock bands before them, The Strokes are trying to learn how to adapt to the current music scene. The rock industry and the fans of The Strokes have quite a bit to be hopeful for going into the new year.