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  MOVIETONE w/ Japancakes  
  The Eyedrum  
  Atlanta, GA  
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I went into this show having only heard one song by each of the bands on some compilation tapes. In both cases, i thought it was interesting and worth investigating further.

Japancakes went on first. They are one of the many "artsy bands" from Athens, GA. They have 7 members (drums, bass, guitar, effected guitar, pedal steel guitar, keys, and cello) although only 6 performed at this show (the cellist couldn't make it apparently!) Their sound is sort of new wave meets Mogwai. That is, the guitars all sounded like they were lifted from a mid 80's Psychedlic Furs album, and yet there is a level of minimalism involved too. And then the pedal steel guitar just adds its eerie mournful sound overtop. Really quite nice.

And they rocked too, which is to say that their music carried the show forward quite nicely, providing ample opportunity to bounce along and just be happy. No vocals to get in the way, just a beat and some melody.

Which made them a poor choice to open up for a really quiet minimalist band like Movietone. Movietone play long slow songs, with drawn out half-whispered vocals. It's a beautiful effect, but after Japancakes got the crowd moving and the mood up, Movietone brought it down and made everyone sit reflectively and listen.

Not that this is a bad thing! I stood there listening to Movietone and thought "Man, i GOTTA buy this album -- this is exactly the kind of music i like to play in my apartment as i sit and read." I really think that there is a place for this sort of stuff. Maybe it was the sake, or the japanese steak i had for dinner, or the several beers i had at the Eyedrum, but after about 20 minutes of Movietone i was ready for naptime!

Maybe Movietone would have been better off opening for another band (they would have been GREAT on a bill with The For Carnation!) Or maybe they should have played at a coffee shop (coffee certainly would have helped me out!). I dunno, i enjoyed them, but not as much as Japancakes. Japancakes i will go see again as soon as they make that hour-long drive from Athens. On the other hand, i got an album by each of the bands, and i really think that i will listen to Movietone a lot more than Japancakes. Go figure.

Related Links:
  Album review: Down The Elements by Japancakes
Album review: The Blossom Filled Streets by Movietone

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