Late-Night TV Music (Location, Location, Location Edition) | Feb. 22, 2021

The Hold Steady, Tune-Yards, Passenger & Masego come at it from different angles.

How’s your Tuesday going? Mine is unexpectedly busy. Too busy, in fact, to come up with some sort of glib intro to tie together Monday’s videos from the Late-Night TV Music world. I’d say sorry, but I know you really don’t care. Hell, in fact, you’d probably be happier if I stopped jabbering and just got right to the action. So let’s do that, hmm?

The highlight of the night for me would obviously be Craig Finn and The Hold Steady, performing Family Farm (from their typically excellent just-released album Open Door Policy) in an empty Brooklyn Bowl for Late Night With Seth Meyers. Though I must admit I also enjoyed watching Merrill Garbus of Tune-Yards trying to extricate herself from a giant heap of bean-bags while singing Sketchy on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert (bonus points for a bassist who looks like David Cross co-starring in the Beastie Boys’ Sabotage video). On the more enigmatically stylish end of things, check out Masego and Don Toliver, whose performance of Mystery Lady for The Late Late Show With James Corden was apparently broadcast from some sort of artsy-farsty post-modern installation full of light tubes, fog banks and silhouetted dancers. It was certainly more vibrant — though far less classy — than the setting for singer-songwriter Passenger, who managed to top The Hold Steady in the empty-venue competition, unveiling his song Sword From The Stone in the cavernous surroundings of none other than the prestigious Royal Albert Hall. In hindsight, I guess I could have come up with some sort of an intro that tied together all these diverse locations. But whatever. Bigger fish, you know?