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Gig of a Lifetime
Daily Telegraph, 2005-05-26
John Flansburgh

Gig of a lifetime: They Might Be Giants' John Flansburgh

They Might Be Giants' John Flansburgh on Elvis Costello at the Nashville Room, London, 1977

It was one of Elvis Costello's early shows, and a genuine "star is born" moment - everything about it was strangely magical.

Here was this young guy sporting a skinny tie, pretty new to the circuit yet already with a set of highly evolved songs. People forget that a lot of the glorious rock bands of the time couldn't get it together live: some could barely make it to the stage.

So to see a performer so musical and with such concise songwriting ideas was incredibly inspiring. He seemed to embody the best possible version of the future of music.

When Costello was performing, he was very inside the emotion of the songs, but in between he was almost smiley. His rock-veneer had not yet hardened.