Monday, June 19, 2006

Live Review: The Lovely Feathers w/Spinto Band@Schubas 6/16/06

What was supposed to be a triple bill of Dr. Dog, The Lovely Feathers, and Spinto Band was unfortunately demoted to a double bill, when Dr. Dog had to cancel their performance due to van troubles. This didn't stop The Lovely Feathers and Spinto Band from putting on a good show. This was the second time I have seen The Spinto Band, I was only slightly less disappointed than the first time. This six-piece buzz band from Delaware with a median age of 20, have a lot of potential to ripen into a solid live act. They bring a dose of high energy with their spastic dance moves, constant head bobbing, and entertaining stage theatrics. These comical antics however outshine their live audio output at times, when their heavily layered guitars and drums clash together producing a deafening roar akin to nails on a chalk board. But, when they get it right, the product is delectable. The harmonic radiance on the pop diamond "Oh, Mandy" has the power to send vibratory chills down your spine, with it's Sigur Ros-esque vocals and instrumentation. But, other than the kazoo-tastic "Brown Boxes" and the effervescent "Crack the Whip", much of their set was a bit of a wash. They did strut out some new tunes, which had some definite listening potential, but I think I will wait until a studio cut is released before I make that decision. The Spinto Band are a great example of band that sounds great on CD, but their live sound is unpolished, and at times jarring. The Lovely Feathers won my pick of the night. This five man band from Montreal barreled through their danceable post-punk pop set fueled on vegetable testosterone. They displayed a much tighter sound, cool and collected, and the chemistry between dueling guitarists Mark Kupfert and Richard Yanofsky as they switched off shared lead vocal duties was undeniably perfection. Though their voices have rather different and distinct qualities, the mixture of their unique vocals produce a very appealing result. Mark Kupfert sounds like a demented Ben Folds screaming through David Byrne's vocal cords, while Richard drips out a sweet, emotional balladeer sound (which probably stems from the guilt of not becoming a doctor despite his grandmother's wishes). Together they sprinkle ooh's and aah's like two lovebirds on a spring day throughout most of their fresh and lively set. There were a few moments when Mark inadvertently messed up Richard's "vibe", but these moments were endearing and allowed a more revealing look at their partnership. Despite these minor flubs, they played through their set with a warm and inviting energy, which was packed with songs from their new album HIND HIND LEGS. The Lovely Feathers sound just as grand live as they do on their album. They successfully replicate live the "jump off your feet energy" of their punk-pop treat "Frantic", which is pure, danceable fun. But, the true stand out moment of their set was when the exchanged jabs via guitar licks on their monopoly inspired "In The Valley", it was like a rock history snapshot torn straight from the pages of David Bowie and Mick Ronson. The Lovely Feathers take you one place and then soar you to another world, they will lull you into a fetal position then scream you awake with an emotional outburst. They are fun, absurd, and will make you dance. (Check out more pics from the show here)


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