The Shins rock old, new hits at M.A.C. Center

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Kent State students voiced their opinions of the turnout for the Shins concert, Thursday night to TV2 Reporter Nicole Septaric.

Contact Nicole Septaric at [email protected].

Update: This article has been corrected to show that the current bassist of The Shins is Yuuki Matthews, not Ron Lewis as was previously reported.

Although Kent State students had mixed opinions on Undergraduate Student Government’s choice to bring indie rock band The Shins to the M.A.C. Center, the group promoted their new album and rocked some throwbacks Thursday night.

Alternative band Relaxer began the evening with mostly instrumental and bass-heavy tunes. The four-member group of Akron natives performed for about an hour. At the end of the set, lead singer Joe Scott asked the crowd if they were ready for The Shins.

“Are you guys excited?” Scott asked. “I am. Wow, it’s strange to actually be up here.” The crowd roared and the lights dimmed.

The Shins started with their 2004 hit, “Caring Is Creepy,” and then moved along to some new tracks from their 2012 album “Port of Morrow,” including “Simple Song” and “The Rifle’s Spiral.”

Toward the end of the evening, front man James Mercer pulled out an acoustic guitar for “New Slang.” Students held up lighters and cellphones for the Garden State hit. After the romantic indie ballad, audience members clapped, jumped, and danced to throwback hit “So Says I.”

After the song, Mercer expressed his gratitude for the fan excitement.

“I’m glad you enjoyed that one,” Mercer said. “It’s really fun for me too.”

During the show, Mercer told several stories about his guitar, and a childhood spent in Germany, as well as introducing each band member.

Earlier this week, USG offered discounted tickets through the Facebook event for the concert in an effort to attract more audience members. The band has gone through several member changes since 2009, and now includes Yuuki Matthews, formerly of Crystal Skulls, on bass and Joe Plummer, formerly of Modest Mouse, on drums.

The crowd was small, and only filled the floor area and one side of the bleachers at the M.A.C. Center.

Contact Drew Parker at [email protected].