Monday, November 07, 2005

Hot 3-Way Action

Spoon, American Music Club and Mary Timony @ Warsaw 11/6/05
First of all, get your minds out of the gutter! I merely titled this post "Hot 3-Way Action" to describe the awesomeness of this great triple bill that played at Warsaw last night (and at the new Nokia Theater the night before, but I was busy seeing Super Furry Animals that night). Going to Warsaw is always about more than just whatever band(s) are playing. It's also about the experience and though the sound isn't the greatest and we found out later that the balcony is now only for VIPs (which is what happens when you sell out to Clear Channel, but I digress) unlike in the past, when anyone could go up there, what makes it all worthwhile is the amazing food! You get a platter of pierogies and kielbasa for only $5 and a plate of cherry blintzes for the same price and they're all extremely tasty. To me it's comfort food and I always end up eating dinner there whenever I'm there. Oh and the draft beer (a Pilsner of some sort) was great, too. Anyway, Mary Timony (formerly of '90s indie darlings Helium) first took the stage with only herself on vocals and guitar and drummer accompanying her. Being unfamiliar with her music before the show, I can only say that I really liked it and that the drummer's playing reminded me a lot of George Hurley (formerly of The Minutemen and Firehose), which is a very good thing. She played a lot of twangy, surf-style licks and seemed to having a good time and even covered Richard Hell and the Voidoids' classic "I'm Your Man" (from the incredible Blank Generation), which made me happy as well.

Next up was American Music Club. I'd never seen this band live before and to be honest, I've only become recently acquainted with their back catalog (including their excellent reunion album Love Songs for Patriots). Singer/guitarist Mark Eitzel seemed very conscious of the fact that most of the crowd wasn't there to see them (but rather the headliners Spoon; indeed a lot of people were still in the bar area at this point) by almost apologizing for their presence, saying that having them on the bill was like being nice to your great uncle or something along those lines. He had no need to worry, though, as AMC put on a stellar (though all too short) set full of lots of oldies (like the riveting "Outside This Bar") and newer destined-to-be classics like "Patriot's Heart" until they closed with "Sick of Food". An AMC show is a bit like an exorcism. Eitzel and co put you in a zone where he really makes you feel his pain (as cliche and potentially stupid as that may sound, he actually pulls it off). For instance, he introduced "Outside this Bar" by saying that he wrote it after his ex-lover's girlfriend attacked him with a knife and he introduced another song by saying that he wrote about after Kathleen (his ex-lover) killed herself. Pretty heavy stuff, to say the least, but the music has the emotional weight to back it up.

Then after a more substantial wait than the one between Mary Timony and AMC, Spoon came on and played what was by far the best show of the 3 times I've seen them over the years (including once earlier this year at the Siren Festival). I'm still waiting for them to pull out their cover of Wire's "Lowdown", which I don't think they play anymore, but otherwise, it was an excellent set. The material from 2001's modern classic Girls Can Tell is still the best and fortunately, they played 6 songs from it last night, but I also really enjoyed hearing "The Way We Get By" and "Jonathan Fisk" (from 2002's Kill the Moonlight) and new ones from this year's Gimme Fiction like "Sister Jack" and "I Turn My Camera On". In the last 4 years, Spoon have grown into a really confident live band and Britt has grown into a consummate front man not afraid of showing off (though not too much) and extending out songs and riffs as well as interplaying with the rest of the band (including excellently named drummer Jim Eno).

Thanks to Frank for letting me use 2 of his photos (the ones of Britt Daniel of Spoon and Mary Timony; the AMC one is from their website). You can find a whole lot more of these photos (all from their recent show in Toronto) as well as a review of the show here.


Blogger anne said...

Hey, I went to this show! Somehow our paths keep crossing...

1:12 PM

Blogger japanesegodjesusrobot said...

Wow what a coincidence! Weren't you at the Super Furry Animals show the night before, too? :-)

2:08 PM

Blogger anne said...

Shit! I was! You have good taste, Jesus Robot boy. Did you go out for Chinese food before the SFA show? Like I did?

4:16 PM

Blogger japanesegodjesusrobot said...

The coincidences are astounding! As a matter of fact, I did get Chinese food before the show and it was really filling! You also have good taste, Sad Stars girl.

5:43 PM

Blogger anne said...

Hey, wanna go out sometime? We have so many things in common, it seems only natural that I stick by your side...

10:33 AM

Blogger japanesegodjesusrobot said...

Sure thing. I'll see if I can fit you into my schedule. :-)

5:38 PM

Blogger anne said...

Well, hey, anytime. This picture that's dotted up and down this page isn't the best shot of me. Sometimes I look cuter.

10:57 PM


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