Wednesday, March 09, 2005
Just for the hell of it, I'll give you short reviews of the Shonen Knife and Marbles shows.
Kiddo opened. They played pretty much the same fast tempo, hard rocking set they've been playing lately, except they had Beachland owner Mark Leddy play farfisa on the last three songs. He actually played farfisa on the CD, and he ruled both live and on the new CD that we're still waiting for them to release.
Shonen Knife played a set with lots of material from Heavy Songs, their last album of new material that they released in the U.S., and lots of the greatest hits. Highlights included "Kappa Ex", "Buttercup", and a cover of "I Wanna Be Sedated". There were a couple really cool parts where Naoko made her guitar feedback. She should do that more often.
I ended up buying a bunch of shit from them. I got the reissues of their first two CDs, Candy Rock (their latest release in Japan, which is unlikely to be released here because it's all in Japanese), and a single for this Christmas song they wrote with Thurston Moore called "All I Want For Christmas". I didn't know they actually did another Christmas song, let alone one with lyrics by Thurston Moore. And the lyrics are kind of weird. It's not as good as "Space Christmas" (which is just one of the best Christmas songs ever and hard to match), but it's still good and I can't wait to play it this December.
You heard the song on Candy Rock with Calvin Johnson and Phil Elvrum. That's just so cool.
I got there right after the first song. Robert Schneider played a few Ulysses songs and a couple of Apples In Stereo songs by himself on acoustic guitar. That was great. One of the Apples In Stereo songs was a new song called "Skyway" that he said he wrote after hearing it in a dream.
But that wasn't actually the Marbles performance. After playing the acoustic songs, he flipped on a stereo immediately behind him, uncovered large cardboard cutouts of Darth Vader (holding a fake keyboard) and the robot from Lost In Space, and took off his pants. Then, to the sounds of an electronic instrumental, he put on this silvery superhero costume, complete with a silver cape. Yes, it was quite dramatic.
After he finished donning his costume, he "played" a few Marbles songs from the new CD. I put "played" in quotes because what he actually did was sing to the backing tracks of the songs. He did have an electric guitar onstage, but he didn't plug it in. All he did with it was pantomime playing it during guitar solos and thrust it into the air for emphasis at certain points. During keyboard solos, he'd thrust his microphone at Darth Vader.
As someone said to me, "That and what I expected were two different things."
I enjoyed it, though. I appreciated the novelty, and the songs were actually good, despite what Pitchfork said. I saw Pitchfork's 5.0 review that they'd posted earlier that day, but I didn't believe it because anyone who appreciates t3h tw33 realizes that they don't understand t3h cut3.
Afterwards, a couple other fans and I got to go back to where the bands kept their gear and talk to Robert for a while. It was another one of those moments that I have talking to indiepopstars where I wish that I had a tape recorder. I forget what all we talked about, but I did ask him about the dream that he got "Skyway" from.
The dream went something like this: Robert was at a party with some friends in a trailer park, but then he started walking home and there was this drug bust at the party. He ended up getting picked up by the police and taken to the station. While he was sitting at the station, the radio played this really good song by the Velvet Underground. The cop that he was sitting there with remarked about how good it was, and Robert, somehow knowing a lot about the song, told him that it was by the Velvet Underground and told him about the record it was on. After that, he woke up and it turned out that the Velvet Underground record in the dream didn't exist, and it wasn't really a Velvet Underground song. So, he wrote down as much of the song that he could remember, and that's how we have "Skyway" on the next Apples In Stereo album.
Oh, and another thing... if you heard any rumors about Robert and Hilarie being divorced, they're true. :(
They're still playing together in the Apples, though, and Hilarie drummed on a couple of tracks on the new Marbles CD.
In other news, Pitchfork posted a review of the Kidz Bop version of the Modest Mouse song, "Float On", which I mentioned at some point during the latest show. I was wondering if they left in the part about hitting the cop car and nothing bad happening, and from the review, it seems that they did. And added an enthusiastic "YEAH!" after it.
I'm not a Modest Mouse fan, but I know the significance of that song being on that CD.
Oh, and I just remembered that the local music zine, Utter Trash, has an interview with Lil Pocket Knife. They actually posted it a long time ago, but I didn't find out about it until recently. Click here to read it.
I think that's all that I have to say for now.
Good luck trying to win those Lou Barlow tickets.