Before I sing that song you all want me to sing, I'm gonna bang on these drums for an hour.
Key Arena was PACKED. There were people squeezed in against the ceiling. The guards weren't letting anyone else onto the floor. Gotye played, like, 400 songs that were not the song anyone came to see, and while I did not want to be one of those people who was just like "play the fucking song already"—the song everyone was there to see, "Somebody that I Used to Know"—all I could think the whole time was "play the fucking song already." All 15,000 people in Key Area were wearing the facial expression for "play the fucking song already." Yeah, yeah, the animations on the screens behind him were pretty, a different style for each song, some animated line drawings, some epic video of volcanoes exploding, etc., etc., but no one cared. I interviewed all 15,000 people individually and no one cared.
Then he said he was going do a quiet song, and everyone got excited because the song everyone wanted to hear starts off quietly, but it wasn't the song. Then he said for the next song he wanted the crowd to sing with him, and everyone got excited-er, because now it was finally happening, and then it wasn't the song either! Hahaha, you got Gotye'd, everyone! Instead he taught everyone a very complicated vocal yodel. No one felt like yodeling, try as me might to lead us to water. And then, finally, finally, he did the song. God the crowd was so happy. HAPPINESS happened. Unbridled happiness... for like a minute. Because... guess who he had sing Kimbra's part? The suspense was killing everyone. There were no women on stage with him. Would someone stroll out just before the female part comes in? Maybe one of the thousands of other musicians at Bumbershoot? Or maybe a musician on tour with him? Or, even, in a pinch, maybe just Kimbra herself on a giant video?
The answer was... no one. No one sang the Kimbra part. It was instrumental. Just the plop-plop-plop xylophone sounds. Nothing. Nada. Blankness. The other singer in a duet—who needs it? How's silence for you? Before the show, Gotye must've been eating crudite backstage and he was all, "Should I get someone to sing the Kimbra part? Naaaah, let's just do instrumentals there. Everyone loves that song so much. FUCK THEM. God I hate everyone who loves my song." And so he did the song with nothing, because he is rich and sick of his song and can do anything he wants, and the all the women in the room rushed to fill the voice by singing along, but you could barely hear it because it wasn't amplified, obviously. Way to go, Gotye! High five. Fans suck!
He started playing another song after The One Everyone Had Come to Hear, but by that point people were running for the exits. As I was leaving along with thousands of others, some woman, world's greatest Gotye fan, screamed, "Fuck you!!!!! This next song's better!!"
* Alternative headline: Gotye The Fuck to Sleep.
More photos after the jump.
Keyboardist. This guy was awesome. Couldn't he have sung it?