American Football brought their particular brand of Midwestern sadness to the East Coast as the latest performers in NPR’s Tiny Desk Concert series. The band did three songs—”Every Wave To Ever Rise,” “Uncomfortably Numb,” and “Heir Apparent”—all of which appeared on their new album, American Football (LP3). Ditching the features for the first two tracks (Elizabeth Powell and Paramore’s Hayley Williams, respectively), American Football brought in some special guests from a local children’s choir for “Heir Apparent.” Mike Kinsella had the kids come out wearing paper crowns, a la Where The Wild Things Are.
American Football’s third album marked a relatively quick turnaround for the band. Their debut self-titled, a defining document of emo music, was released back in 1999; it took Mike Kinsella 17 years to release the follow-up, also self-titled. We spoke to Kinsella in the lead-up to 2017’s American Football (LP2), discussing Twitter, adulthood, “political” music, and why Dinosaur Jr‘s J Mascis is “like Bart Simpson,” among other things.
Recent Tiny Desk Concert guests include Cat Power, ambient pioneer Laraaji, and Zaytoven, who did his own solo show when Future decided not to show up. Check out American Football’s Tiny Desk Concert below, and revisit our review of their new album here.