Mar 17 2009, 9h21
Abr 4 2008, 18h55Thu 3 Apr – We Are Scientists, the 925s
American indie rock band We Are Scientists graced the Netherlands with gigs in no less than three small venues. As far as I know, at least two of them sold out, and I was lucky enough to attend the last one in Tivoli de Helling.
The evening started with the 925s, a quartet of Brits that have relocated to the Netherlands and are apparently well-known as openers for acts like WAS and Babyshambles. They were trying alright, and I have to admit they were decent, but certainly nothing more than that. Nothing about their songs stood out to me and with their emo haircuts, they seemed to be trying just a bit too hard. The audience wasn't thrilled either - the applause was lacklustre and even when they mentioned the main act they couldn't inspire any big whoops. In any case, they will open for WAS again later this month in Amsterdam, so someone must think they're doing something right.
We Are Scientists got the crowd going right as they came on stage, launching into Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt with enthusiasm. Almost immediately, a lively moshpit was created in front of the stage. Soon enough, it was complete with crowdsurfers. I only saw one of them escorted out by security, but I hope they got to more of them. The surfers didn't seem to faze the band, who went on playing their infectious indie rock tunes.
Stage banter concerned sexual metaphores for dancing ("Get your willies out!") and at whose house the party would continue after the show. Mostly though, they didn't talk but played their hearts out, and that's the way the crowd liked it. It kept dancing and bouncing until the very end, and I'm sure I'm not the only one who could've gone on for another hour, as long as WAS would've kept playing.
Fev 15 2007, 20h44Tue 13 Feb – My Brightest Diamond
Shara Worden, also known as My Brightest Diamond, may be best known as one of Sufjan Stevens' Illinoisemakers, but she can make some noise on her own too. Just a day before Valentine's Day, she performed in Amsterdam's poptemple Paradiso. Playing in a tiny hall and without any opening act, the crowd was surprisingly large and eager to see her. Worden looked positively pixielike in her green dress, turquoise tights and dragonfly-necklace, and only the worn-out hiker shoes she wore confirmed that this tiny creature with the big guitar was, in fact, human.
Worden took her time to charm her audience, singing four songs with just her guitar to accompany her, and telling a few stories. Personally, she reminded me of Sarah Slean, another pixielike songstress with a penchant for dramatic songs and charming stage banter. After the third song Worden's band (a drummer and a bass player) tried to join her, but Shara picked up on the positive vibe from the audience and played one more song by herself, displaying her clear, classically trained voice. The band was allowed to join her on stage after that, and together they launched into most of the material of My Brightest Diamond's first album Bring me the Workhorse. The set got a louder and more rocking character, and Worden now divided her time between the guitar and keyboard. The band and Worden herself were clearly into it, but the audience remained passive. The applause after each number was loud and enthusiastic, but during the songs most of the people stood still and listened. Granted, My Brightest Diamond's music isn't exactly meant for rocking out, but a song like Freak Out should have gotten more of a reaction: it even contains a line saying let's dance!, something Worden certainly took seriously as she bounced around the stage and repeatedly bumped into her poor bass player.
Still, the audience showed no lack of enthusiasm when it came to appreciating Worden. After the main set she quickly got back on stage by herself for a one-song encore. However, the audience was not yet ready to let her go after this, and she was called back not once, but twice! Although she exclaimed that she was running out of material, Worden seemed genuinely touched by the audience's appreciation, and repeatedly thanked them, even saying that "this means so much" to her. After the third encore, a beautifully sparse rendition of The Good and the Bad Guy, she definitely left the stage, breaking the spell of a truely enchanting evening.
Dez 28 2006, 21h25After years of highly inconvenient planned concerts, the gig gods finally seem to have taken a liking to me. All my concerts used to be scheduled in the middle of exam weeks, preferably the day before a particularly tough exam. It was like this in high school, and it started out like this in college. Last year, I attended a concert on the nights before both of the exams for my course in European Literature. The first was Broken Social Scene in Amsterdam, the second Deep Purple in Brussels. Both times I saw Our Lady Peace live, I had to race back from Amsterdam to Tilburg so that I'd be on time for a high school exam (I think both were French too).
But no more! I have a lovely total of three concerts ahead (Ben Folds, My Brightest Diamond and Feist), and both Ben Folds and Feist are planned very conveniently for me: in a class-free week!
I am overjoyed, I am telling you. I hope the gig gods will continue to like me. Maybe I should burn some incense for them? Or would they prefer me playing bootleg albums? ;)
Jul 24 2006, 8h29My tenth journal post is a song-guessing meme, because I am bored. Woe.
Step 1: Put your MP3 player or whatever on random.
Step 2: Post the first line(s) from the first 20 songs that play, no matter how embarrassing.
Step 3: Bold out the songs when someone guesses both artist and track correctly.
1. ever close your eyes, ever sat and listen Enya - Wild Child
2. the night it was lazy, the streets were all crowded Matthew Good - As Long As You're Mine
3. I have my favourite shadows, ghosts and other courts bizarre
4. caught your eye on my streetlight Matthew Good - Big City Life
5. pangs of silence from the room upstairs Ben Folds - The Ascent of Stan
6. now we started from, a background thing find diffusing
7. you quiver like a candle on fire, I'm putting you out Badly Drawn Boy - Once Around the Block
8. whatever you want from me, whatever you want I'll do Yo La Tengo - Sugarcube
9. I didn't hear you leave, I wonder how am I still here Dido - Here With Me
10. this is a commercial for my army and my navy Matthew Good - Pledge of Allegiance
11. black out the window, it's party time
12. let me tell y'all what it's like, being male middle-class and white
13. I'm gonna drink my whiskey, gonna have my man, I know you got nothing to say Imani Coppola - Legend of a Cowgirl
14. say hello, remain close to me Matthew Good Band - Apparitions
15. you say you wanna go there, ride then
16. strange fear I ain't felt for years
17. get back on your feet again, so insincere
18. if I am lost for a day, try to find me
19. all they want is a free ride Broken Social Scene - Windsurfing Nation
20. old bloody orange, there was a time Hawksley Workman - Old Bloody Orange
Badly Drawn Boy, Ben Folds, Broken Social Scene, Dido Enya, Hawksley Workman, Imani Coppola Matthew Good, Matthew Good Band, Sarah Slean, Siobhan Donaghy, Stars, Starsailor, Sugababes, The Twilight Singers, Yo La Tengo
Jul 16 2006, 19h55So, this new last.fm look... I'm not sure about it yet. It seems so crowded to me. It's shiny alright, but there are a tad too many pictures for my taste. I suppose I'll get used to it eventually, only for the look to change again. :P
As for music, I've been having a Disney mood again last week. More precisely, a Pocahontas mood. I've been listening to the OST a lot on my mp3 player on the way to work. It's really a small masterpiece, and it saddens me to know that the movie got such a lukewarm reaction. It's a beautiful, luscious work, with a bit more seriousness than the regular Disney movie. While I do love happy endings, I think it was particularly brave to make the ending of Pocahontas a more melancholy (and historically accurate!) one, with John Smith leaving for England and Pocahontas staying home. And the soundtrack is awesome, from the energetic Just Around the Riverbend, the sweeping Colours of the Wind and the threatening Savages (with the particularly subtle line 'they're not like you and me, which means they must be evil').
In other musical news, I got Regina Spektor's new album a few weeks ago and it's fabulous. It has all the old Regina quirks and charms, but with a bigger budget. Maybe not her best work, but it's pretty damn close. And Chantal Kreviazuk is having a new album out soon! I am totally psyched.
Abr 21 2006, 8h46The good thing about birthdays is getting new music. Or well, music that is new to me. Or that I just needed to get as an actual cd, instead of a bunch of mp3s. Loot for now (actual birthday still coming up):
Strange Little Girls - What can I say? It's Tori. I've listened to it once, so far, and I think I like it. '97 Bonnie & Clyde is supercreepy.
Urban Hymns - I asked for this based solely on Bitter Sweet Symphony. Of course, given the genius of this song, I can only be disappointed. But I'm not really. Need to listen to it more, though.
1965 - At least with this album I can say for sure that I love it. I've had it on my computer for ages. The world of Greg Dulli is filled with sex, cigarette smoke and rough edges, and it's something I easily fall for.
for connection purposes:
'97 Bonnie & Clyde
Bitter Sweet Symphony
Mar 29 2006, 14h51This week is a soundtrack week. Some of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cats yesterday and this morning, lots of Disney now. Man, words cannot describe how much I love Disney. The first Disney film I can remember seeing was the little mermaid. My uncle and aunt took me to see it when I was three years old. It gripped me and never let go. I actually watched it again this afternoon and it never loses it's magic for me. My mum's also a big Disney nut, she's been collecting the movies on VHS since I was a kid, and she's probably also a big factor in my love for the House of the Mouse. I really grew up with Disney, so it's part apprecation and part feeling like a kid again.
So now I'm downloading Disney songs all over the place. I already had the complete soundtracks to The Little Mermaid, The Lion King, The Jungle Book, Aladdin and Mary Poppins (Julie Andrews, by the way, is also fabulous), and I'm in the process of downloading Pocahontas and The Hunchback Of Notre Dame. I just wish I could find Beauty And The Beast somewhere.
Dez 4 2005, 22h16seen live:
because everyone is doing it.
Dido [my first concert. I was fourteen and went with my mum.]
Uriah Heep [seen twice, with dad.]
Our Lady Peace [seen twice. once a full set, once as an opener.]
Avril Lavigne [because OLP opened for her. not even half bad.]
Racoon [at a free festival. with my grandmother.]
DI-RECT [same as Racoon].
Kaizers Orchestra [three times. first time still the best. the trick gets old.]
Dandy Warhols [only concert I regret. they were boring.]
Metric [as an opener for bss. goooood.]
Broken Social Scene [twice. good memories. :)]
K-Os [opener. slightly disappointing.]
Sarah Slean [didn't care about main act ron sexsmith. Sarah is fab.]
Barbie Bangkok [fun popband. opened for delavega.]
DeLaVega [boyfriend had to review the show, I tagged along. good music, average singer.]
Sigur Rós [boyfriend surprised me with this. magical.]
Amina [opener for sigur rós.]
Most Serene Republic [opener for broken social scene.]
I think that's it. If I forgot any, they'll be added later.
Out 24 2005, 8h19I haven't updated in over a month! I'm sure you all missed me terribly, right? ;)
I haven't bought any new music since I last updated, because I am poor like that, but I have been downloading a lot and I plan to buy most of it eventually.
Last week my boyfriend played some tracks off Berlin for me. Depressing stuff, but beautiful. I've been listening to it a lot in the past week. I like Lou Reed's lyrics. Straight-forward, but still poetic.
The new Broken Social Scene! It's messy, but so much fun. I can not stop listening to Windsurfing Nation (and goodbye good grammar! damn tags). I want to get this album asap, before the bonus EP thing runs out.
Months ago, my boyfriend introduced me to Greg Dulli and his bands Afghan Whigs and The Twilight Singers. Damn, some good stuff. I downloaded 1965 some time ago and I love it. I am a sucker for dirty lyrics that you don't want your parents to hear, and Dulli has a lot of them. I only recently got my hands on Blackberry Belle, but I love it just as much (and maybe a little more, for entirely personal reasons). It's more mellow than 1965. I hope to legally own both albums before the end of the year.