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The Melodrama of Manchester Orchestra

It’s not often that you can distinctly hear the rattling of subwaycars inside a venue, especially during a performance. But last night(Nov. 6) at the Subterranean as a hushed audience listened to Andy Hullof Manchester Orchestra sing the quieter verses of “Where Have You Been” off 2007’s I’m Like a Virgin Losing a Child, Chicago’s Blue Line roared in the background, fitting the manic ambience of the show quite perfectly.

Sandwichedbetween openers the Nevers and co-headliners Annuals, the Atlanta-bredquintet dramatically bounced between calmly romancing the crowd withsubtle instrumentals and soothing vocals to rocking the hell out of theroom. Singing lines like “If you knew I was dying would it change you?”from “I Can Barely Breathe,” helped remind those twenty-somethings of atime when feeling something meant giving it 100 percent — the angst,the heartache, the yearning — all of it. Even during climatic momentssuch as “Golden Ticket” and “Now That You’re Home,” the audience stoodfrozen in awe of the raw madness onstage. But prior to taking his finalbow, a solo Hull, armed with an acoustic guitar, wooed fans once morewith lyrics such as “The party’s over / Turn off the lights / All goodthings must end,” leaving the crowd with nothing but the rattle of theBlue Line train.

We asked:Andy Hull of Manchester Orchestra has mentioned Woody Allen is more ofa musical inspiration to him than any musician. The track “Sleeper1972” is a nod to the neurotic director. Which movie would you like toinspire a future MO song?