One of my favoritest indie bands, Sons and Daughters, played my favoritest venue, the Bowery Ballroom, tonight as part of Tartan Week here in New York, designed to encourage travel to Glasgow, the wearing of kilts, or something like that. Well, I dunno about Scotland, cos everyone I've heard from there complains about the weather, but if I could drink some fine scotch and/or ale, and listen to bands like Sons and Daughters every night, then I would certainly consider a trip.
I had seen Sons and Daughters twice prior to tonight. First time was a drunken night at the Mercury -- that's what dating an Englishman at the time and hanging with his Scottish friends got me, and then the second time was at a late night afterparty at the Tribeca Grande following a gig by their fellow Scottsmen, Franz Ferdinand, also a sodden affair. Tonight, having come straight from work (ugh!), and then needing to return to work bright and early in the morning (so why am I writing this now???), I opted for a more sober route.
I had been excited to revisit the little band that could ever since I bought these tickets a few months ago. Their two albums, Love The Cup and The Repulsion Box, are always in rotation on my iPod cos their 3 minute songs are straightforward affairs that make you want to get up and stomp your feet. I am in love with their lead singer, Adele Bethel, whose feistiness grabs you and demands your attention.
She sings into the mic full of dramatics and flails around in a movement not dissimilar to the Elaine Benes dance a la Seinfeld, but you know she's pouring her heart and energy into it, so you can't help but love it.
She is partnered on vocals with Scott Paterson, whose guitar is the driving force behind their music. What he does on the guitar complements the emotional range of Adele's voice perfectly.
I even love how bored the bassist, Ailidh Lennon, looks in comparison to Adele:
While I probably could have used a few tumblers of scotch to add to the mood (since when did I become such a fucking drunk?) like I did before the LCD Soundsystem show I went to last week at the very same venue, I still appreciated all the chi Sons and Daughters inject into their live performance. They predictably got better responses out of their crowd and myself with their old songs, but did manage to play a good handful of new songs as well. I salute thee, oh Sons and Daughters of Scotland!
Also caught the second opener, the 1990s. Funny trio of Scottish lads (yes, I'm using the word 'lads') who reminded me of a high school garage band with their loose, goofy, sloppy style. I couldn't decide whether the drummer or the guitarist reminded me more of Bobby Brady. They played songs reminiscent of the Kinks with gusto, and had cute, self-deprecating moments, but not really a band you're gonna rush out and buy their cd, or pirate from the internet, for that matter. Soz...