I only had to be back in town for an hour and a half to regain my Richmond footing.
Which meant scraping the crab bits, sand and dust off of me in order to clean up and be at Steady Sounds by 6:00.
The occasion was the Diamond Center's 7" release show but the evening was starting with an Athens band.
Casper and the Cookies were apparently old friends of THDC and their power pop was energetic and immediate.
I found them just plain fun but someone with a far better music vocabulary then me mentioned their poly-rhythms.
Favorite into: "This song is about a guy who finds his love life luck in dating villianesses."
Not ashamed to say that the first person who came to mind was Cruella DeVille.
There were assorted mentions of drugs, French immigrants and body odor, making for the best kind of self-deprecating humor.
You could also tell they'd been playing together for a while.
One of the two drummers (always a good thing) said that the keyboard player had won them no fans when he opened up a recent show by asking, "So you're the people who voted for Santorum?"
I love clever stage banter.
They closed with "The Boys are Back in Town," especially satisfying for the female bassist/vocalist, never mind that the song is 36 years old.
As in, practically middle-aged.
After a break where I chatted with a Blood Brother, re-met a guy I'd met at a Hitchcock event a while back and rubbed the cheek of TDC's Kyle to appreciate the stubble of a beard he'd shaved off only this morning when the band returned from tour at 5 a.m., it was time for the main event.
The guy I'd re-met had come because he'd read that TDC was one of the ten best RVA bands and I affirmed that for him before their set began.
It was only my humble opinion, of course.
But then they launched into their distinctive, in the words of someone who makes his living with music, "psychedelic tribal goth." and I felt sure that the first-timer now understood their deserved place on the list.
I will never get tired of Kyle and his Rickenbaker (although I will continue to hope for the day when he has a 12-string Rickenbaker) or not enjoy Tim, the standing drummer.
The fact that half the band is female only adds to what I love because Brandi's voice and stage presence and Lindsay's keyboards are so integral to the experience.
They closed with the two songs on the new 7" (with a very vintage Decca-like looking label), "California" and "Bells," showing everyone in the room why they needed to buy this record.
You have to appreciate a band that gets home from tour at the crack of dawn and is playing a show fourteen hours later for the locals.
Not to mention a touring band who does an early show on an off night, making a Sunday a whole lot better for it.
Likewise, you have to appreciate having a record store that hosts music shows three block from home.
Or a neighborhood bar on the next block where a special of Asian pork is cooked to medium perfection and melts in my mouth like (spicy) butter.
Especially when it's followed by chocolate espresso pudding with white chocolate shavings.
Unlike my recent time in Annapolis, I didn't see any bikes parked under big boats in dry dock.
Just pop, psychedelia, Tomaresca and all kinds of people I know.
You are very Richmond if...
you can fall back into everything you enjoy about Richmond within 90 minutes of walking in the door.
Pshaw. Easy as falling off a log, even for this non-native.