Sunday, May 16, 2010

Scoring My Life, Glows in the Dark-Style

You gotta love the Camel for their Sunday night shows; when nothing's happening at other venues, they frequently have music with which to end the weekend. Tonight it was Lux Vacancy and Glows in the Dark, two bands I knew were worth seeing again.

Last time I saw Lydia Ooghe was at the Listening Room, here, and tonight she'd added Cameron Ralston on bass, a worthy addition to the band's sound. Her quirky lyrics ("You make my timbers shiver" was a personal favorite) on topics such as falling in love with a rat or Dad being a waffle cone and Mom being a scoop of strawberry ice cream are ear-catching, especially given her unique voice.

Introducing a cover, she said it was "...a Bill withers song. You've probably heard it," and handed off her guitar, crossed her legs, clutched the chair seat and launched into "Ain't' No Sunshine." It was brilliant. Closing with the song "Jam, Baby," she sang, "I quit you, but you stuck to my shoe." In her little girl voice, it was a charming finish to a fine set.

Then it was on to Glows in the Dark, a band I love for many reasons. First, the beauty of their music is that any song sounds like it could have been lifted from an atmospheric scene in a movie. If I ever want the story of my life scored, they're doing the soundtrack.

Also, with song titles like "Gary Glitter" and "Europe" the listener is inevitably surprised at how the music develops, given the improvisational quality of it. There were plenty of musicians in the audience, all nodding in appreciation as the melodies took off on various tangents.

And then there was dancing guy, the one who planted himself front and center while the rest of the audience sat. The problem being that free jazz is a bit tough to dance and clap to, what with musicians improvising all over the place and ever-changing time signatures, not that this guy didn't try anyway.

You could see the smiles and murmured conversations around the room from his first shout-out to the band through his ever-twitching dance moves. I have no doubt that he thought he was one with the music and he did provide some stellar entertainment, sometimes dropping to the ground, other times just shaking his head so hard you thought his neck would snap.

Not that I'm making fun of dancing guy; he was obviously a music lover and was demonstrating that with his body. It wasn't that the audience was embarrassed for him, but he got to be a little distracting after the first few minutes.

And you don't really want distractions when Glows in the Dark is playing. Their music is an aural trip on its own, taking the listener wherever his or her head wants to go.

I like to just sit back and imagine which episode in my life each song is describing...or perhaps even predicting. No visuals needed.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for the nice words, Karen! By the way, that is hilarious about the woman asking you "do you see any part of my body that doesn't look like a woman's?" when you were taking the census.