Concert Review: Girls, Dum Dum Girls, Leisure @ Paradise (4/1/10)

I'm pretty sure our friend C.O wore this shirt when we saw him!

Artists: Girls, Dum Dum Girls, Leisure
Location: Paradise Rock Club, Boston
Date: Thursday, April 1, 2010
Grade: B+/A-

Act I: Leisure – They were ok, nothing special. Clearly, they had musical chops and they were decent performers, but the music just never came through for me. I didn’t hear great songs. In other words, the parts were better than the whole; for me, with a great band, live or on record, but especially live it’s vice versa.

Glen: Unlike Chris, I actually dug this band. As I said to him, I couldn’t really find a problem with their music. In other words, I might not have loved their brand of glam/dance rock, but I thought it was pretty catchy and the lead singer was a funny character. They reminded me of the Lovely Feathers with the keyboard and song structures.

Set List:
follow me
heartbeats
sway
other people
no other place
suez
outside

Act II:
The Dum Dum Girls – Things start to heat up. I saw these girls last October, opening for King Khan & BBQ and honestly they didn’t floor me. Don’t get me wrong, I thought they were decent, but nothing notable. This time around, I appreciated their performance more. I don’t know if anything changed with them, so it was probably just me. Anyway, I really dug their vocals the most. Still, this time, they didn’t send me flying off my rocker, but I thought they did a good job and I enjoyed it. Not to mention, as before, their dress and body movements on stage both caught my eye. I love the head bobbing and almost elegance in their appearance. I mean they look rather attractive in their all black get up and it’s certainly a sight for sore eyes!

Glen: Of course, it’s hard to go without mentioning the DDG appearance unless one wears a blind fold during their performance. They played a tight set that showcased some new songs like “Bhang, Bhang,” my favorite “Jail La La,” “Rest of Our Lives,” and “Yours Alone.” Also played were older ones like “Catholicked,” and some other song that I can’t think of the name, but they’ve been playing for a while. Like I said in my review of their 2010 album I Will Be, the drum beats are absolutely fantastic, but like Chris said their voices are beautiful.

Act III: Girls: Ahh my favorite Girls are Guys! Of course, the band I came to see and they did not disappoint. The group opened with the classic, “Laura” and immediately all in attendance it seemed, began singing along. The music was nice and soft, almost warm? lol The lights were a flashin’ but slowly and matched the music perfectly. Singer/Guitarist, Christopher Owens modestly rocked out with his funky, moonwalking dance moves. He really looked fly, definitely flyer than Whacko Jacko. They continued the set with other Album classics, such as “Darling,” “Ghost Mouth,” and their signature number, “Lust For Life,” which unsurprisingly garnered the greatest reaction from the audience. They created one hell of a song transition, actually three song transition, from the soft, yet infinitely endearing, “Hellhole Ratrace,” into the noisy (a first for the evening), garage like, “Morning Light,” then finally into the Grease resembling, “Big Bad Mean Motherfucker,” which also generated large enthusiasm from the crowd, including a trio of femmes gyrating on stage. Girls also played about six or seven non-Album lol tracks, including the new song, “Substance.” This is sort of a criticism of mine, but not really. Let me explain… Well, I anticipated knowing all but one or two songs they would perform, three tops! This was considering, I knew and loved all of their record. Incidentally, I didn’t know any of the tunes that didn’t appear on their record. Ohh well, I suppose this is not their flaw, but a bad on my part as a fan. Anyway, they came back for a sound encore featuring the classic, “Lauren Marie,” a track I was waiting for all night! Overall, they were a fabulous live band and I recommend everyone to see them, if you get the chance.

Glen: Like Chris said that three song transition — Hellhole to Morning Light to Big Bad — was awesome. It will go down in the history books as one of the most memorable parts of a concert for me. My only response to them playing five or six non-Album tunes is that they toured behind Album last fall. They are probably getting ready for whatever is next and want to get a feel for the new material.

Chris

Girls H & E

Hopes: I HOPE Girls play every song off their fantastic, debut, LP, Album and I love them all and have one of the best concert experiences ever. Perhaps, Glen, Paul, and I meet some of the band members.

Expectations: I EXPECT them to play most of those songs, but also play some B Sides or possibly new/unreleased material that I am unfamiliar with. It will be a good concert, but not top 10, which is hard to beat.

Chris

GIRLS/DUM DUM GIRLS

Girls and Dum Dum Girls will be touring together in a little while.

As far as Boston area location, they will be playing at the Paradise Rock Club.

The date? April 1, 2010!

Yeah, buddy, that week is going to be awesome. The Black Lips start it off on the 25th and then you have Deerhunter on the 27th and then you have Beach House on the 28th (I’m still up in the air, but I kind of want to go now) and then this! Damn, bro!

Album Review: ALBUM!

Artist: Girls
Title: Album
Year: 2009
Label: True Panther Sounds

1) Lust For Life- 10: This song makes me, how should I say, a little crazy, totally mad, and perhaps fucked in the head lol. I remember when Glen first showed me this, it was one of those instantaneous pop hooks. You just want to jump up and start dancing and singing along even, if you’re 100% straight: “I wish I had a boyfriend, I wish I had a loving man in my life,’ are some of the finer lines. Singer, Christopher Owens does a great job with the lead vocals, but I really adore the doo da doo da backing vocals mixed with clapping and a groovin’ bass line. It’s a classic.

2) Laura- 9.4- Wearing it’s 50s-60s pop rock influence as Needle Dropper, Anthony Fantano cited; in this track the Girls boys (haha!) are bundled up in a catchy love number for the one and only Laura.

3) Ghostmouth- 9.7- Another classic, lonely love number, which seems to be a recurring theme in this LP. Owens likes the bad boys, but he has a girl, and “nothing compares to you.” Well, guy, girl, whoever “you” is referring to is causing our hero to go bananas, riding on a ghost train, hoping to reach Heaven If he arrives there, he can chill with my ears cause this is a killer track. Cheesy, I know lol.

4) Goddman- 9.1- Not as good as the previous tracks, but still exceptional. It clearly demonstrates the group’s ability to switch up their sound; here we have some fine bongo tapping.

5) Big Bad Mean Motherfucker- 9.2- Ahh, good old rock n roller. 50s greaser anthem. Reminds me of some of the songs off the Grease Soundtrack and specifically I’m getting a David Bowie Ziggy Stardust era feel.

6) Hellhole Ratrace- 9.9- I often play this song two, sometimes three times in a row. It’s just too exquisite for one listen. Simply, one of those tunes, you never want to end, and I often garner that feeling from a brief number, but this track is one second shy of seven minutes, so kudos to Girls! Very chill, sharp departure from Big Bad, which makes the album that much more fantastic.

7) Headache- 9.4- I love the low, soulful vocals here, which offer everything, but a headache! Lyrically, it’s pretty simple, but it works perfectly: “I only want to be with you all the taahhimee.”

8) Summertime- 9.5- High vocals, akin to the earlier track “Lust For Life.” It’s too damn bad that we’re in the dead of Winter, since this song obviously reminds me of the Summer and even when we reach that time of the year it just fucking rains! Anyway, enough for seasonal rants for now.

9) Lauren Marie- 9.6- Epic, to say the least. Great percussion, fabulous Elvis/Bowie like vocals, and simple guitar strumming. If I was Lauren Marie, I’d feel honored.

10) Curls- 9.6- For some reason, the guitar riff is etched in my brain. Echoes (no pun intended) to Darkside era Pink Floyd.

11) Darling- 9.4- Nice little closer. It’s not as far out there as some of the other tracks, so in other words it brings our melted brains back to the surface. This track also shares a memorable guitar riff.

Overall: For such comically generic LP/Band names, these guys (lol)are anything but; based on this debut, Girls have a promising future and are amongst my new favorite artists.

Chris