As is par for the course around here of late, I have been tardy in declaring my top gigs from 2011 (to go with my 2010 and 2009 lists):
#5 Foo Fighters and Tenacious D at Sydney Football Stadium, December 8 – simply because stadium rock was such a novelty (and because we were undercover for the persistent rain). Grohl and co certainly can work a crowd!
#4 Michelle Shocked at Joe’s Pub, New York City, May 29 – captivating dinner and show set up with Michelle revisiting The Texas Campfire Tapes and showcasing some new stuff in a hilarious fashion:
#3 Bright Eyes, Wild Flag & Superchunk Radio City Music Hall, New York City, March 8 – A spectacular show with great supports.
#2 Black Joe Lewis & the Honeybears at Bowery Ballroom, New York City, March 26 – So much fun, such a big surprise. Sweaty and groovy and all that…
#1 Bettye Lavette at Cafe Carlyle, New York City, May 25 – this is one of the gigs of my life time. In a fancy piano bar with this compelling chanteuse but metres away. Her voice and emotion was compelling.
So what were your favourite live outings?
As I did this time last year, here’s my list of favourite gigs from the year that was 2010:
#5 Emiliana Torrini at the Forum, Melbourne, January 3 – the jungle-drum beating Icelander made me smile all night…
#4 Justin Townes Earle at Corner Hotel, Melbourne, April 16 – he didn’t blow me away as much as on debut in 2009, but his bluegrassy brilliance was still a joy
#3 Dinosaur Jr followed by Pavement at Golden Plains Festival, Meredith Amphitheatre, March 6 – it was a miserable festival weatherwise, but this pairing of acts on the first night gladdened my heart (also of note was the performance of Nashville Pussy the following afternoon)
#2 The Pixies at Festival Hall, Melbourne, March 19 – Playing the Doolittle album in order with a great visual show (perhaps to hide their increasing girth). Again, not as exciting as seeing them for the first time a couple of years ago, but still a great night.
#1 Pavement & Gersey at Palace, Melbourne, March 12 – a dream pairing and both acts were in stand out form. Made me feel a good 15 years younger…
March was certainly a great music month, while the rest of the year was less impressive.
What were your favourite live outings?
My lovely, linguistically able wife purchased this Gallic CD a couple of months back, and I’ve finally got around to reviewing it.
I did a couple of years of French at school, but my retained knowledge thereof doesn’t stretch far beyond “je m’appelle” and “voulez vous coucher avec moi ce soir”.
So an album entirely en Français is a little wasted on me in a lyrical sense. As such, I just tend to listen to it as an exercise in vocal gymnastics. Thankfully, Miss Camille does seem to be doing a lot of doopedy-do stuff. Even more thankfully she stays this side of Bobby McFerrin gimmicky.
The album has an upbeat, summer feel and Camille certainly has an engaging vocal style. She bears some similarity to Iceland’s two female forces Bjork and Emiliana Torrini as she ventures up and down the vocal scales with ease.
Her voice is regularly a percussive instrument, as on this track (about being stuck on a boat?):
I’d probably like this more if I understood it, but it moves me in the right way.
One warning/complaint: the final track is some weird barely audible 30 minute hummed/droned fade out which does mess with your mind (well, my weak one anyway).
File under: French for yodel?