Friday, October 13, 2006

Badly Drawn Boy @Hiro Ballroom, Oct. 11th

Went the other night with Wawa to catch Badly Drawn Boy at the Hiro Ballroom, a very cool funky space for gigs. The only other time I had been there was for Gomez earlier this year. This time there were no seats, but it was okay, cos I was able to park myself on the speakers on the side of the stage for a perfect view.


I fell in love with BDB's debut album, The Hour of Bewilderbeast, something I picked up while in agony studying for the Bar Exam. It resonated with me then, and I still listen to it on occasion. I was excited for Damon Gough when he landed the soundtrack to "About A Boy." But then, inexplicably, I lost touch with the music of BDB. I dunno why.

So when the opportunity came to see Damon & Co. at such a great venue, I jumped at it. I realized that I wouldn't know most of the songs, other than the ones from Bewilderbeast etched in my mind. So I went in with little expectation, other than Wawa's warning that we could be in for a marathon here.

Damon has a curious stage persona. It could be him all the time 24/7, but who knows. He's quite churlish (there's a vocab word for you, Bharat!), exclaiming that he's the best singersongwriter to have come out of England. He wears a dumb knit cap. He bashed on Coldplay, Bono, James Blunt. He acted a little annoyed if we didn't whoop it up enough for him.

But then there were the hilarious moments -- he made no secret of his affinity for Bruce Springsteen, wearing a t-shirt that said "Born to Run" and playing a rousing a capella/acoustic version of "Thunder Road" and bits of "Prove It All Night." He also dabbled in a bit of Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" and Madonna's "Like A Virgin." As Wawa commented, "he basically made a mockery of [Wawa's] entire iPod."


When BDB played his own material, there were brilliant moments. He rocked out with a full band for most songs, and included an acoustic interlude. He also grabbed the mic sans guitar and danced with a girl in the audience. He played the keyboard. He dabbled on the xylophone right in front of me.



He played for less than 2 hours, making all of us quite happy. I'm getting old, ya know! Anyway, despite only knowing a handful of songs, I was delighted to see him, finally.




These great pics are courtesy of my new camera, a Canon SD700. Thanks to my dear bro for giving his sis such a nice birthday present.

Also ran into Matt of the Music Slut, who gave his cute review here.

Added 10/15: Here's a partial clip I took of BDB covering "Thunder Road":

And here's a clip of BDB singing "Everybody's Stalking":

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