i guess that's how the future's done
While many locals went to the Basilica block party last nite to consume giant turkey legs & the like, JRDN & I (& Lisa) ventured instead over to Dinkytown to check out the solo Leslie Feist show at the recently reopened Varsity Theater with the rest of the Mpls
I had never been inside the Varsity, so I was taken by surprise at how swanky the place has become. The decor in the lobby is arty-yet-classic, but the layout of the main room is striking (especially for this town) in how the atmosphere is so cozy & lounge-like. While the floor is populated by candlestick-adorned tables & chairs (which extend into surrounding risers), at each side of the stage are red shag-covered beds set up as stadium-seating, allowing concert attendees to get far more comfortable than usual.
I had only seen Feist once before, when I popped my Broken Social Scene cherry at NYC's Mercury Lounge back in summer 2003, so I had been looking forward to catching her solo material for quite some time. While I was hoping to see her fronting a full band (she'll be coming back to do so in September), I wound up relishing the intimacy of her truly solo act.
Feist sauntered out on stage with a candle in one hand around 9:15pm, receiving a hefty amount of applause upon her arrival. She began her set with a cover (I think) that featured the use of a digital loop, which she used throughout the show to build layers of vocals (or create a phantom rhythm guitarist) to help fill out her just-a-gal-with-a-guitar sound.
Feist lightheartedly joked around with the audience throughout her set, encouraging people to check out fellow Canandians Sloan (who are in Mpls tonite), teasing Broken Social Scene's "KC Accidental" & really commanding attention as the nite's singular headline performer. A group of (drunken?) guys sitting behind us to the right of the stage were a little too enthusiastic with their Feist worshop, repeatedly yelling out "I love you!" & panting with lust. Feist took it all in good humor, even inviting the guys on stage with her to perform (after the fact) the "mushaboom, mushaboom" part in, well, "Mushaboom." Returning to their "seats," several of the guys commented that they had just orgasmed. JRDN, Lisa & I assumed they were headed home for a good circle jerk after the show. I know, ewwww.
MOV Feist - "Inside & Out (Apostle of Hustle Unmix)" (28.5mb)
Feist closed her main set with a slowed down, "undancible" version of the Bee Gees' "Inside & Out", which I got most of on video (please excuse my split-second sorry attempt at singing along). She explained that she included the cover on Let It Die after she got into the habit of making fun of album producer Chilly Gonzales, whose background vocal tracks always sounded like Barry Gibb (she teased him by referring to him as "Barely Give"). This disco-less version was arranged by Apostle of Hustle's Julian Brown, who helped Feist come up with a way to perform it for British radio without doing karaoke over a dance beat (ugh). The song's original video:
WMV Feist - "Inside & Out" video (7.2mb)
MOV Feist - "One Evening" video (24.7mb)
I love this video for a variety of reasons. The simple "set" design. Feist getting her boogie on with Canadian rapper Buck 65. The sheer 70's AM cheesiness of it all, which Feist embraces whole hog. The video was directed by George Vale, who also did the "Almost Crimes" video (w/Feist) for BSS.
MOV Broken Social Scene - "Almost Crimes" video (32.9mb)
Catching up on older shows will resume soon enough, but I wanted to post the recap/pix from this show right away, so I didn't forget all the details (which has been problematic of late). Anyway, gotta get back to work...
ETA: Dah, I totally overlooked Feist's session last Friday at The Current:
MP3 Feist @ The Current 7/8/05 (stream 128kbps)
RAM Feist @ The Current 7/8/05 (stream 20kbps)
Kudos to For the 'records' (who's on a BSS kick of late) for reminding me.