Stranger in the Alps - A local quartet quietly starts out this evening and being a Saturday evening could be quite the challenge. They lineup with acoustic guitar/lead vocals, bass, keyboards/backing vocals, and a guy on a notepad. I really enjoyed the atmospheric opener with its mannered backing sounds slipping in and out of the song. They went a bit more conventional thereafter with singer songwriter sounds leaning towards folk but with lots of keys, electronic effects, and electronic drumbeats punching in and out. The keyboardist added a harmonica, which I was not sure was terribly effective, but he played it well so it worked. When they went a bit more exotic with the backing, they had something that worked quite well and was original. The crowd took to them well and many were paying close attention. But, being Saturday night, whole conversations invaded my headspace and it never ceases to amaze me, how little people have to say when they talk so much.
Little May - This female trio from Sydney has a great little album out now (to be reviewed in one week's time). It was fun catching the live show to see what they can come up with. Again, the deep moods created with their music is not really suited to a raucous Saturday night crowd, but it is a large excited audience, so it's a tricky balance. They are a quintet tonight with drums and keys added to the guitars and three female voices. They have a steady pace, which lulls you into a dreamy world where they add just the slightest of flourish to the tones. I can not quite detect the alchemy in use where they can make dream pop sound so intriguing, but somehow through careful writing, they manage it well. Maybe a little too happy a crowd tonight, but I think Little May cut through to the deep core of many a mind.
Quote of the Night: While walking home on 9th Street...
Woman: "So you don't have your car."
Staggering Man: "I remember 9th Street..."