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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

An Evening in Montclair, Cut Copy/Washed Out (with 9 year old daughter)

Seems like forever ago...  but about 24 hours ago my young daughter and I were watching Washed Out finish a nice opening set supporting Aussie new wave throwbacks Cut/Copy.

Maybe it was the two hard days at work?  Maybe it was the nursing my hobbled wife during the down-time?  Maybe it was the return of therapy Tuesdays?  Maybe it was all of the above?  But around 8pm I wondered what the implications would be if I got a little me time.  Better yet, some me and the little one time.  We of course had concerns about how late the night would be.  It was a school night after all.  But we are early in the year and it is 4th grade, right?  Is it any different if Selena Gomez was in town on a weeknight?  Or if we went to a Yankees game?  Plus, Montclair has a curfew.  11pm the show will be over I thought to myself.

And so it was.  A mad dash to Montclair so we can make it before box office closed at 9.  Turns out you cannot order tix online or via phone on day of show.  As spontaneous and mellow I might appear the fact is I really like to plan these events months in advance.  Seeing how last night went I can now understand why folks enjoy doing things on a whim.  Mainly, the joy and wonderment expressed from the little one's eyes made it all worthwhile.

She showed concern when the Parkway had a construction project.  "Daddy how are we gonna get in?  What will we do if the box office is closed?"

"Don't worry about it.  We will still have had an adventure and tried to do something out of the ordinary." I told her.

"Daddy where are we gonna park?"  "Daddy are you sure it is all ages?"  "Daddy will there be al ca hole there?"

"It's gonna be fine...  Don't worry about it." I calmly replied.

True indeed.  A parking spot right on Bloomfield Ave helped us get to the window at 8:58.  Once inside she was in a constant frenzy.  We started on the floor to catch "Chillwave" newbie Washed Out.   Georgia product Ernest Greene is the main operative in this well polished and smooth band.  It was a great fit for the synth heavy evening.  I had some knowledge of Greene and his project prior to last night.  After this well paced and performed set I will certainly be on the lookout for more.

Know this:  when I asked my daughter about key moments from the evening she said:  "I really liked the song Cut/Copy played before 'Need You Now' and Washed Out."  She was right.  Those two moments were the highlights of the night.  Some reference material from Washed Out:

"Eyes Be Closed"  Their final song and to this point their breakthrough hit.  Equal parts Moby, OMD, Simple Minds, and maybe Erasure.  OK, it could very well be equal parts 4 entirely different bands.  I happen to like it.   This is the stuff House MD montage scenes are set to.

"Amor Fati"  More goodness and kindness set to cool beats.  If you ever liked John Hughes comedies and/or Members Only jackets I may have found something for you.  It counts if you had a Club Member jacket like me too...  I am not ashamed to admit that Members Only were out of my financial reach.  Or that I had Sky Jordan's too.  Big deal.

For more:

I really enjoyed talking my girl through the transition from opening act to headliner.  I mentioned how Washed Out is not quite there yet because they were still breaking down their own equipment.  She was curious about the engineers and roadies that enveloped the stage.
"It looks like they need a lot of outlets" she said.

 I told her how I look for certain things before the main act hits the stage.  When the stage hands test the mics it is a good sign.  If they duct tape the play lists to the floor.  Finally, when an opened beer is gently placed near the bass drum.

"When you see that, you can be sure the house lights are coming down." I proudly told her.

And with that Cut/Copy took the stage and played a very simliar set from last months show in Brooklyn.  I readily admit I knew nothing of this band until a few months ago.  And to this day I really only know their latest album "Zonoscope."  They have 2 other albums so I am late to the party for sure.  But since they played several tracks from an album I enjoy...  I like this set.

"Take Me Over" led off the show just like last month.  "Elisa", and "This is All We've Got",  and "Corner of The Sky" are all fun, dance-centric toe-tappers.  Their latest single "Blink or You'll Miss a Revolution" also hit some high notes.

But, as my astute little girl noted, the encores were worth the wait.  The inspired "Where I'm Going" and their big hit "Need You Now"(which as dedicated to Dj Mehdi who passed recently: worked on all cylinders.  Dan Whitford (vocals/synth) is a tremendous frontman.  He has a strong voice and excellent stage presence.  And, thankfully, when the songs are over he stays away from the pointless chatter.  One song smoothly transitions into the next.  Tim Hoey (guitars/sampler), Mitchell Scott (drums) and Ben Browing (bass) round out the cast.  Good, clean fun.

Should you be interested:

"Need You Now"

"Hearts on Fire"  Their biggest hit up until this record.  Bass driven club music.

"Where I'm Going"  Quickly becoming my favorite.  Beach Boys and Queen set to Men at Work.  Or something like that.

"Take Me Over"   I kinda like this live recording from a Houston outdoor fest earlier this summer.  Gives you a great feel for the snare and synths blending nicely with Whitford's voice.  Wish I had a camera that could capture the sound like the one used here.  It also demonstrates how much these guys love the 80s!!!  I can see them sitting down with Martha Quinn for sure.

We made our way out moments after 11 and I am pretty sure she was asleep seconds after I pulled away from our choice parking spot.  She made it through the morning routine in good shape too.  Her only request was a shower because that is "the only way she could wake up."

A friend joked "in a few years she will be asking for coffee and a shower."

Probably.  For now she was the youngest one in the joint and fitting in quite nicely thank you very much.  Why not?

After sitting through hours of back to school night rhetoric it appears 4ht grade is very much the big leagues.   I am pretty sure I could not handle it.  Hell, I skipped out before the damn presentations were over.  Maybe I work in some incentive program for her.  Doctor said it might be a good idea.

You do your homework without complaining and keep up the good grades maybe we see Brett Dennen and Guster.

Better than working toward a Build-a Bear, right?  Or once again am I being selfish?

In any event we do it all again tomorrow...  Caveman record release party at Mercury Lounge.  There are still tix available!!

Go download CoCo Beware...

More on that later...

Be well all.

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1 comment:

  1. Nothing selfish about spending time with your daughter. Those are bonding times she will forever cherish. A shared love of music is something the two of you will always be able to talk about even when she clams up about other subjects. Kudos to you! -KellyR