Incubus concluded a week's worth of secret shows and special events by performing their new, unreleased album If Not Now, When? in Hollywood last night to an intimate crowd at Incubus HQ, an artsy, makeshift storefront-turned-studio.
Security was lax and the majority of fans who showed up, despite not being on the guest list, were let inside the venue. A decent variety of merch was for sale near the entrance. Canvases and large sheets of paper covered with drawings by Brandon Boyd adorned the walls. A tray of pastels and markers were provided for fans so they could add to the works.
Friends, family and dogs of the band mingled among fans. Brent Bolthouse was in attendance, as a guest of the band, not as an opener. Bolthouse DJ'ed as an opening act for Incubus HQ's Day 4 on July 3. We never noticed this before, but BFFs Bolthouse and Boyd could pass as brothers.
If Not Now, When? is the band's sixth studio album. The title is a reference from Hillel the Elder's famous quotation: "If I am not for myself, who will be? And when I am for myself, what am 'I'? And if not now, when?" Hillel is unarguably one of the most important figures in Jewish history.
Boyd has described the album of having "a very a particularly warm musical tone" and guitarist Mike Einziger has said in an interview that "...there's a pretty obvious lack of heavy rock music on this album." We can vouch for both statements. The heaviest "song" performed last night was a piece of "Sugar Water Purple," an impromptu jam the band created on Incubus HQ Day 5.
"Promises, Promises" sounds ... promising as the band's next single. It's our favorite track off the album. Standing thisclose to Incubus while they performed a batch of new songs after a five-year hiatus of new material almost made us forget about how pissed we are to have missed the band perform their album Make Yourself in entirety earlier this week.
Fans who could not attend the past week's worth of special Incubus events, including chats with the band and musician's clinics, were able to watch everything online. Fans were also invited to share video via an Incubus-endorsed iPhone app called Viddy, which allows users to create and upload 15-second videos.
After the show, Boyd was approached by a fangirl who not only interrupted the show to ask for a high-five, but felt it was appropriate to ask Boyd to sign her sketch book during the applause.
"Uhm, security?" bassist Ben Kenney said while pointing to the spectacle.
If you're still hankering for more, tickets for Incubus with special guest Young the Giant at the Hollywood Bowl go on sale this Saturday, July 9 at 10 am PST.
You can also catch them Live on Letterman in a CBS.com online concert exclusive, live from New York's Ed Sullivan Theatre on Monday, July 11 at 6pm PST.
Setlist and more photos after the break ...
If Not Now When
Friends and Lovers
In the Company of Wolves
(NOTE: We did not hear "Rebel Girls," an iTunes and UK pre-order bonus track).
A peek inside Incubus HQ after the break ...