It seemed the atmosphere couldn’t get any more electric early on Friday night, as a crowd 20,000 strong packed the Garden for the largest NYC show ever by hometown rockers the Strokes, with an opening set by Devendra Banhart and the Grogs.
Then, in an unannounced move, after Banhart and crew had cleared the stage, out of nowhere Elvis Costello appeared on stage and played a three-song set: “Pump It Up,” “Radio Radio” and “(What’s So Funny ‘Bout) Peace Love And Understanding.” Somehow, the Twitter servers didn’t melt as nearly 40,000 thumbs jabbed the news to the Twitterverse.
As the Strokes’ set ended, frontman Julian Casablancas threw out the line, "Wouldn't it be great if Elvis Costello sang with us?” The crowd roared its approval, only to be met with Casablancas’ retort “April Fools! Just kidding – he's not doing it." But he did: In the night’s second most manically tweeted moment, Costello came out, strapped on a Jazzmaster and joined the Strokes in playing “Taken For A Fool,” from the band’s just-out album <I>Angles.</I> Watch the video below.
It was a busy Friday for Costello, who’d already surprised one crowd that night when he showed up at Irving Plaza’s gig by the Secret Sisters (watch that here). He also managed to squeeze in a show he was actually scheduled for: His own concert, which took place at Gramercy Theatre.