Friday, September 22, 2006

Lose the Girl

Yesterday night I went with some friends to Tonic, on Norfolk St, to see Elysian Fields in concert. The music is a mix of chill out, Portishead, Mazzy Star, something out of David Lynch, etc. The best I can say for it was that is was atmospheric, good for listening to on a dark, rainy day. Yet the songs were all very similar and I don't think their catalogue bears an entire show. They sang for about an hour and I kept looking at my watch. That's not a good sign when listening to live music. The performance didn't help. I had to avoid looking at the female lead singer because she was so pretentious and obnoxious she made me want to gag. The rest of the band kind of followed her solipsistic nonsense. She has a husky voice that she milks with some extra reverb in the mike, but every song she sings sounds exactly the same. What is the point of having words in a song if one can't understand them? The great American vocalists, and there are many, are storytellers, and they engage the audience with emotion and narrative. This punk had neither. Her emotion was fake. Her gesturing, bogus. Some friends thought she was high, but nobody high could be so calculatedly fake. Some performers, like Sid Vicious, engage the audience with provocation. Others do it with charm and emotional openess. This girl was mumbling to herself and there is nothing more alienating, at least to me, than a performer that doesn't give a crap about my being there. Plus, she wore a ridiculous red and black slip that looked like it came from the sale bin at Joyce Leslie.
So my advice to the otherwise decent band is, lose the girl. She sucks.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous4:34 PM

    Well, I'm just glad that I didn't go!!!