There were just two bands
on the bill tonight, so i was not annoyed when i showed up at
10:30 and nobody had started playing yet. I was assured that
the first act would start soon, and so i went to fetch a beer
as The Earl steadily grew more and more crowded. It was rather
packed by the time Her Space Holiday took the stage.
I really really like this band. They do catchy pop tunes with
a sense of humor. And they do them with keyboards, laptops,
and a table of whirly lights. It's like a homemade dance club
Anyway, they played another brilliant set. Apparently leader
Mark Bianchi prefaced the last song with the phrase, "It's been
a crappy year and this might be the last time you see us. Ever."
I missed this comment being stuck in the restroom, but Tracers
dutifully reported it to me. It would be a damed shame if Her
Space Holiday broke up. Then again, it is always best to quit
at the top of your game.
And they certainly were in form this night. They sounded good,
and the songs were fun and energetic.
So i stood there, watching a basically electronic duo perform,
and at one point they indicated that they were going to do their
version of an American Analog Set song, from the new AmAnSet
Updates EP (which was the ostensible reason for
this tour). And so the vocalist for AmAnSet came out and sang
his part into the computer, where it was mixed and spliced right
there. Live. Brilliant!
The guitarist for AmAnSet also lended his axe to a few tunes,
and that seemed odd to me. I mean, Her Space Holiday are more
or less an electronic act, and here was a guitarist "guesting".
Strange. I felt like i was witnessing some sort of musical fusion
of tremendous import. As if i was seeing the contemporary equivalent
of Miles Davis's Bitches Brew album. As if the
fusion of laptop electronica and good old-fashioned rock was
happening live right in front of me.
Maybe something significant was happening. Or maybe i should
just stay away from PBR when i am really tired. I dunno, but
it seemed significant at the time.
After their set, The Earl grew even more crowded. Tracers and
i retreated to the back of the club to grab some air, and wound
up staying there outside the press of people, for it got REALLY
crowded when American Analog Set took the stage.
It was a wierd crowd. I knew almost none of the faces (which
is very odd for an Indie show in my home town), and these people
seemed dressed a little, ahem, better than the average indie
fan. That is -- these fans seemed to be refugees from somewhere
else, and not the standard "bad-hairdo and tatoos" crowd that
frequents The Earl. Why is that? How did American Analog Set
become popular outside of the Indie Rock Community? Did they
have a song on Ally MacBeal or something?
Very wierd. And annoying, since these people stood around talking
loudly to each other and on their cell phones, which made it
exceedingly difficult to hear the subtle music of the very band
these people were supposedly there to see! I just don't understand
Anyway, despite all of this American Analog Set put on a very
competent set. I had to strain to hear lots of it, but what
i could hear sounded great. They played All About Us,
which must be their classic tune, as well as the Her Space Holiday
song they cover on the Updates EP, even dragging
Keely onstage to sing with them.
So overall, it was a fine night with some fine music.