Aimlessly wandering through the cinematic streets of SoHo can often seem like a social treasure hunt in which an X can be found at every corner.
Try it yourself one day, follow a faint smell until it grows stronger and your nostrils take you to the most charming and delicious bakery you've ever seen. Or listen for the low rumble of music and find yourself, for instance, on the corner of Wooster and Broome where, last night, hundreds of young fans, gallery hoppers, and class skipping students were huddled in front of Team Gallery looking up toward the rooftops.
Inside the gallery, New York based photographer Ryan McGinley showcased his exhibit entitled, Grids, which consisted of stunning portraits of fans at concerts over the past 4 years. His friend, Bradford Cox, perhaps more famously known through his solo project Atlas Sound or his band Deerhunter was setting up on the roof of Team Gallery preparing to play a live set.
The crowd grew as eyes shifted down unto their smart phones informing the twitterverse of the impending performance. Inside the gallery, the lighting over McGinley's portraits illuminated the street as the foot traffic slowed as Cox stepped up to the microphone.
It was about a minute after 8pm when the speakers turned on and the music started to echo over the nodding heads and diminishing whispers. Atlas Sound is continuously selling out shows, so the fans in the crowd were pretty upset with what happened next.
Cox had been playing for about ten minutes when the speakers were cut and what was at first believed to be a technical issue, proved not to be the case. The microphone was turned back on and the musician addressed the crowd in a playful, yet defeated tone, "We've been occupied by the police."
Sigh. Due to noise complaints, the police were forced to shut down the concert, but the music wasn't about to stop. The streets thinned out, groups of people were standing around by the gallery lighting their cigarettes and scheming the rest of their evenings.
Then the words, " Atlas Sound acoustic set" and "Inside, now!" were being coughed around and the dispersion made an about-face. Team Gallery only let in a handful of fans, who then surrounded Mr. Cox as he stood with his guitar in the middle of the space.
It was an intimate performance, laced with finger-injury banter and beat-keeping requests of the audience. There were still a few shoulders being tapped asking who the performer was, but for those that happened across the entire spectacle, it was another true had-to-be-there NYC moment.