counterfnord

Gigs, dance, art

April 14th, 2011: Djoew / Benjamin Bret / The Black Chicons / Kalicia Katakov

@gambetta

First things first, I didn’t really remember how much this place sucks. The sound is just terrible, and the layout means people at the bar can get loud enough to annoy me when I try to focus on the music, while they’re annoyed by the racket I call music. I guess it’s better than nothing, but not by much.

I kinda liked Kalicia Katakov. Not an emphatic endorsement, but they had the kind of melodic side I actually like, and I liked the singer’s voice too. I can’t say much more because I was distracted by my — always challenging — attempt to be socially less than inept and trying to recover from the shock of the crappy sound at the same time. I’d really like to hear them in decent conditions.

The Black Chicons are just not my kind of thing. Too straightforward rock I guess. I just tuned them out halfway into their second song. To each his own, I’m emphatically not passing any kind of judgment on what they do. I just wasn’t right for me at that time, and I didn’t even really listen.

Let’s go into the tricky parts. I was downright relieved to see Benjamin Bret being far less stressed out than when I last saw him. When I see someone I know and care about being tense, I’m usually at least as tense and basically go nuts with worry. This time I could enjoy the set — despite the terrible sound it was an improvement. I really think it was better than that other time, especially the cover, and the set hit a lot of right notes about that mock-sloppiness. Just enough to defuse the tension about playing in front of people, but not so much that it would hide the craft in these songs. Still, it’s always frustrating in that such shows only scratch the iceberg of what this guy has been doing over the years, but I was pleased with the positive response. Including someone I had brought over and who genuinely liked his music.

Talking about being tense, take the above and square it when it comes to Djoew. Because her music means a lot to me, which makes me sensitive to a lot of things over which I have no control. That crappy sound became a personal insult — nay, closer to injury. But the intensity and sheer greatness of the music was enough to overcome that. “Slowly to the west” has been etched in my mind ever since, and I even moved to the front for “all that glitters”, which is unheard of but that’s my favorite song in recent memory if not ever. Today of all days I can’t mention one cover, but her closing one felt like a release from things I didn’t even know were holding me down. There’s so much more, and she’s so talented. But I know I felt much better after hearing her play, and I’m very happy that the guy I dragged there liked her music. He’s not the first one to ask me whether she’d have a record out anytime soon. I wish I could say so, I guess I should say I know better, but “better” is so wrong in this case.

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April 26, 2011 - Posted by | Music | , , , ,

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