Photos by Omar Kasrawi

“I’m old as fuck! But damn I rock!” A rallying cry by Eels frontman E (Mark Oliver Everett) to a packed crowd at Irving Plaza. It was part joking around, and part truth because on this Wednesday night, Everett did damn well rock.

Robert Ellis

Before the Eels took the stage it was a chance for Robert Ellis to bring forth the humor and tunes. Going between his piano and guitar, he kept the mood light and the music smooth and definitely brought the jokes with him as well. And when you’re dressed like a taller, much skinnier Boss Hogg, a sense of humor never hurts.


Then, it was the Eels turn to mix humor and rock, coming out to Bill Conti’s “Gonna Fly Now”. They kicked off their set with three straight covers in the following order: The Who’s “Out in the Street” > Robbie Gentry’s “Mississippi Delta” > Prince’s “Raspberry Beret”. It’s a staple of this tour before they launch into hits like “Dog Faced Boy” and then jokingly asking the audience, “Are you ready to soft rock New York City?”

The Eels sounded crisp and focused throughout the night. They played a ton of hits from “Novocaine for the Soul” to “Fresh Feeling” and “Souljacker, Part I”. Everett kept things light with the audience throughout the night but the jokes never distracted from a tight and unified band that can still rock, no matter how old they are.

Robert Ellis:


Eels setlist:

1. Out in the Street (The Who cover)
2. Mississippi Delta (Bobbie Gentry cover)
3. Raspberry Beret (Prince cover)
4. Bone Dry
5. Flyswatter
6. Dog Faced Boy
7. I Need Some Sleep
8. Dirty Girl
9. Daisies of the Galaxy
10. Prizefighter
11. Tremendous Dynamite
12. Open My Present
13. She Said Yeah @Cover[b071f9fa-14b0-4217-8e97-eb41da73f598]
14. You Are the Shining Light
15. My Beloved Monster
16. I’m Going to Stop Pretending That I Didn’t Break Your Heart
17. I Like the Way This Is Going
18. Little Joe!
19. Today Is the Day
20. Novocaine for the Soul
21. Souljacker, Part I
22. I Like Birds
23. P.S. You Rock My World


24. Fresh Feeling

Encore 2:

25. Mr. E’s Beautiful Blues
26. Fresh Blood
27. Love and Mercy / Blinking Lights (For Me) / Wonderful, Glorious
28. The End (The Beatles cover)

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