the best haircuts are taken
It was a rainy, dreary Memorial Day weekend here in Mpls, but alas it did not damper my spirits. On Saturday nite, we gathered some of the troops together over @ casa de Rosen for game 5 of Wolves/Lakers, after which we took the gathering downtown to join up w/some peeps who had been at Target Center for the victory. Most of Sunday got away from me, but I did manage to head down to the Fine Line for a Stills/Metric/Sea Ray triple-bill, which was good times indeed. Segueway-Steve, take me away...
This was the first single off of Old World Underground, Where Are You Now?, which has been featured over in my "listen x 5" section for quite a while now. Metric is yet another band in Broken Social Scene's family tree, which can only be a good thing in my view. "Combat Baby" is a fun little ode to contentious relationships that frankly just makes you want to get up & dance. So get up & dance, dammit! What? Are you too cool for school, or something? Jeez...
Metric closed out their set at the Fine Line with "Dead Disco", and they kicked it out w/much fury. It's another grooving, dance-oriented number, this time taking lyrical aim at dance-punk disco revivalists - so it seems appropriate. At the show, Metric's kick-ass frontwoman/keyboardist Emily Haines was doing her run-jump-and-kick thing on stage, to the delight of the masses. Wait a second, did I take any pictures...?
NYC's Sea Ray, who will be playing Mpls again @ the 7th Street Entry on June 22nd, opened the show with a 20-30 minute set of their dense, pop-oriented indie rock that was pretty solid. It didn't have me running to the merch table to pick up their latest cd, but I dug on it enough to be pleased w/seeing them.
I didn't really need to see headliners The Stills again. As documented briefly in a previous post, I was at their 3/10/04 400 Bar show where they opened for Broken Social Scene, who featured Metric's Emily Haines that same evening. Now, if you haven't heard Emily's lead vocals on BSS's "Anthems For A 17 Year Old Girl", then you're missing out. After seeing Emily sing it in person, I developed a kind of rock-star crush that should only be reserved for teenaged-girls & shiny guys named Chad. Okay, I may be exaggerating a little. Still, I loved the Metric cd I had picked up randomly from the Fetus a few months back, and the chance to see Emily strut around on stage again was not to be missed. So I drove down to the venue, paid my $12 & planted myself right in front of Emily's keyboards.
Emily & the rest of Metric did not disappoint in concert. It was their last nite of a three-week tour supporting The Stills, and both Sea Ray & the headliners expressed their disappointment/sadness that Metric would be leaving them. I suppose if Emily Haines were on tour w/me (and my fictional band), I'd be sad to see her go too. Miss Haines let her bandmates take the stage before her so she could make a dramatic, fashionably-late entrance, after which they broke into a hard-driving "I.O.U." opener (which also opens their cd). They drove a little too hard unfortunately, as guitarist (and fellow BSS alum) James Shaw broke a string & forced us all to wait for him to get it fixed. During the impatient break, Emily lightened the mood by suggesting that this quiet time was actually her ideal Metric show. Bassist Josh Winstead also chimed in w/some political banter, but luckily this did not go on for too long & the band jumped back into the set w/what may be my favorite tune, the media/Bush-bashing "Succexy" (which Emily seemed giddy to play, IMO).
The rest of their 50-or-so minute set featured several other tracks from the LP, as well as what I think were a few newer tunes. During "Combat Baby", Emily jumped down into the crowd & accosted the indie kid to my left, walking him into the middle of the audience while continuing to belt out the song. He was stunned, just as I would have been. When it came to the break-down section, she left him to go boogie-down w/some of the hotties in the front row, after which she collapsed to the floor (still singing, mind you). Emily remained on-stage for the end of the set, but her theatrical antics continued, thankfully. At one point, she wondered aloud about her inability to be Iggy Pop, since she was a female (which drew cheers), that was then & this is now, and she doesn't do drugs (well, not that amount of drugs, anyway). We laughed. It was fun. Go see Metric if you have the opportunity (I highly recommend it).
My attitude for this show was, "come for Metric, stay for The Stills." Emily Haines called The Stills "beautiful boys from Montreal," and I suppose they're good-lookin' enough. I really do like a lot of the songs on last year's Logic Will Brake Your Heart, but there's just something about The Stills that keeps me from really liking them. I ran into Jim from howwastheshow, who was on his way out after Metric's set & had no urge to stick around for The Stills. Their set was decent enough, but I left before the encore because I, too, had lost the urge to stick around.
I still can't figure out what it is about The Stills that continues to give me pause. Maybe it's because they sound like such an amalgam of lots of other indie rock bands, or maybe it's because they seem like the indie rock band your uncle may like. Can anybody help me figure this out? Your comments & analysis are much appreciated.