Friday, February 13, 2009

(Sounds of) Kaleidoscope/The Tennis System/Big Gold Belt - Black Cat - Feb 12 2009

Big Gold Belt - Two piece opener with a guitarist working in front of a Mac and a female singer/monotone delivery system (about half and half). Singer looked good and was better when doing cutesy vocal touches. Droning, shoegaze electronica fun, I suppose. One song moved me toward the end.

The Tennis System - Pure shoegaze at the start but the set moved into a pop-psyche direction, not unlike a poppier, more upbeat Ride. I don't know my shoegaze scene too well and it seems like many categories to be awash with fuzzy borders and category combinations, but all-in-all, a catchy band.

(the sounds of) Kaleidoscope - I saw this band a couple of years ago and was wary as I already have two different Kaleidoscopes in my record collection, but they were likely aware and have the parenthetical clause working here. I enjoyed the band a few years ago and was very happy that I thought them even better this time around. Strong driving psychedelic rock with good atmospheric vocals (when not lost in the mix) are the focus here. Two guitars blazing away in a washed out echo over the driving rhythm section. A good band that I will be happy to see any time they show up.

I began the evening as one of the eight people to watch the opener, although it quickly grew to thirty to forty. The large crowd peaked in the middle set and then faded to about half at the time the headliner closed. The show started at around 9:30, moved smoothly with the headliner beginning at 11:10. Metro line finishing at midnight and weekday work needs may have added to the decline. I don't think it was band quality, but I think there are real issues on when to start and end shows and I'm not sure I have the answer. I would enjoy having them start earlier and always wanted that when I had my M-F 8-5 job, but so few people seem to be there at the early hour. Is that because they are conditioned that way? I think so as some "matinee" shows at the 9:30 will certainly attract a full cloud if they've plunked down $25 to $40 to see the act.

This is the second time in a row, I've seen significant tapering off of crowds and I will continue to monitor this behavior as I find it disturbing (and if that's the worst of my problems, I will sleep well).

Quote of the Night: Kaleidoscope singer noting that "it's Thursday, some holiday--Martin Van Buren Day?"

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