Posts Tagged ‘spinto band’

Thursday, October 23rd, 2008

Fast Blood

The Spinto Band and Frightened Rabbit in Toronto

Photo By Frank YangFrank YangSo hands up whoever had “50%” in the “How many people are going to take off after Frightened Rabbit’s set?” pool. Congratulation, you win some taffy (note: you do not actually win taffy). I had guessed that about that percentage of the couple hundred who showed up at Lee’s Palace on Tuesday night were there to see the highly-regarded Scottish outfit make their Toronto debut, and I was about right. This is not to take away from the other two acts on the bill – both headliners The Spinto Band and locals Spiral Beach put on good shows and were certainly well-matched stylistically, but if someone was there for the angsty anthems of the middle act, then the other two might not have been up their alley.

Now most local bands added to a touring bill would likely just show up, do their thing and leave, but full points to Spiral Beach for making the most of the opportunity, dressing up the stage in an elaborate setup of lights, signs and pylons to accompany their half hour set. They also brought their own fans, who turned the dance floor of Lee’s Palace into, well, a dance floor. I hadn’t seen Spiral Beach for at least a couple years, since they were a very green outfit, and it was immediately obvious that what unrealized potential I’d seen in them back then as they tried to meld New Wave and surf rock was now very much being realized. Like an un-kitschy but still tremendously fun B-52s, they were unceasingly energetic onstage in the way that young people are. I’m now exponentially more interested in this band than I was before.

I’d caught an approximately 15-minute set from Frightened Rabbit at SxSW back in March but even in such a short time, they – and their album The Midnight Organ Fight – made an immense impression. Similarly, though they were the ones most were there to see, they had only an opener’s set length in which to satiate the fans who’d been waiting a long time for them to visit. To this end, the barreled through their set – comprised mainly of Organ Fight but with a few nods back to Sing The Greys by request. Frontman Scott Hutchison’s cheerful demenaour was a decided contrast to the downcast nature of his lyrics, particularly as delivered in his thick Scottish burr, and though the band’s songs seem like fairly straightforward rocked-up folk, seeing the range of instruments and arrangements needed to recreate them faithfully – how many four-pieces do you see with three of them wielding Telecasters? – you come to appreciate how sophisticated they are underneath. To say nothing of simply being great songs. Next time back, Frightened Rabbit had best be headlining their own show. If not for the fans’ sake, then for the sake of the band who’d be unfortunate enough to have to play after them.

And this time out, said band was The Spinto Band, on tour in support of their new record Moonwink. But if the Delaware six-piece were at all perturbed at all the extra elbow room for those who stuck around, they didn’t let it show. Or they loved it. It’s hard to tell, they were simply so gleeful on stage. And that’s good because their technicolour pop songs demand glee and the Spinto Band played and danced like deliverymen of sonic candy floss overdosed on their own product. Their most impressive moment was when singer/guitarist Nick Krill broke a string on his guitar and proceeded to unwrap the mic from the stand, carry it over to the spare guitar, swap guitars and re-mount the mic all without missing a note. That was slick. And while I was definitely there to see Frightened Rabbit, I wasn’t sorry I stuck around.

Laundromatinee has a session with the Spinto Band.

Photos: Spinto Band, Frightened Rabbit, Spiral Beach @ Lee’s Palace – October 21, 2008
MP3: Spinto Band – “Summer Grof”
MP3: Frightened Rabbit – “Head Rolls Off”
MP3: Frightened Rabbit – “The Modern Leper”
MP3: Spiral Beach – “Made Of Stone”
Video: Frightened Rabbit – “Heads Roll Off”
Video: Spiral Beach – “Made Of Stone”
Video: Spiral Beach – “Kind Of Beast”
MySpace: The Spinto Band
MySpace: Spiral Beach

Crawdaddy and Cord Weekly talk to Sloan.

Wired and Buzzbands talk to the principals of Magnetic Morning. They’re at the Horseshoe tonight.

The Verve have a new video.

Video: The Verve – “Rather Be”

Blurt interviews Lucinda Williams.

Paste and NOW feature Of Montreal. They’re at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre next Tuesday night.

So thanks to some serious pathos on my part and some serious excellence on the Apple Store’s part, my laptop got fixed yesterday (dead logic board) in under four hours turnaround. That is absolutely amazing. Which means that my laptop is alive and coming with me to New York. Which means pretty much nothing to you, but certainly makes things more enjoyable for me.

Tuesday, October 14th, 2008

Alphabetical Order

The Spinto Band / Moonwink review

So most everyone I know is referring to next Tuesday night’s show at Lee’s Palace as “the Frightened Rabbit” gig, and quite reasonably so – they released one of the year’s best records in The Midnight Organ Fight back in April and have toured North America a few times since then, but have yet to visit Toronto and also, we do love those thick Scottish accents. But as much of an attraction as they are, there’s another touring band on the bill, the one that goes on after them. What’s the word… oh yeah – the headliner.

And the lucky band that gets to follow Frightened Rabbit (and possibly see the crowd thin considerably?) is the hottest thing out of Deleware right now – Joe Biden. Okay, second-hottest – The Spinto Band, who just released a new album in Moonwink. As was established when the tour was first announced, it’s an odd pairing of acts. Frightened Rabbit trade in deadly earnest folk-rock with a particular interest in bodily fluids and listening to The Spinto Band is like mainlining pure refined sugar through your eyeballs (or eardrums), but apparently they’re quite big in Europe so there you go.

Moonwink is unrelentingly cheerful and bursting with tight harmonies, runaway off-kilter melodies and quirky instrumentation. Imagine Clap Your Hands Say Yeah overdosed on cotton candy or Of Montreal without the general batshit crazy. Moonkwink‘s unrelenting glee gets a bit exhausting, even over the record’s brief 35-minute running time, but its masterfully executed and all evidence is that the sextet put on a terrific show so if your blood sugar is within safe levels, they may offer the perfect pick-me-up to follow Frightened Rabbit.

Metro and ArtistDirect have interviews with The Spinto Band.

MP3: Spinto Band – “Summer Grof”
MySpace: The Spinto Band

The Quietus has an interview with one of Of Montreal frontman Kevin Barnes’ alter-egos. As I said: batshit crazy. Skeletal Lamping is out next week, they play the Queen Elizabeth Centre on October 28, and if that show is even a fraction as insane as the New York one – though I think the venue IS next door/part of to the equestrian building at the CNE – it’s going to be ridiculous. Update: New video!

Video: Of Montreal – “Id Engager”

Spinner and LiveDaily talk to Rachael Yamagata about her new record Elephants… Teeth Sinking Into Heart.

Pitchfork has an interview with Sigur Ros bassist Georg Holm about the making of Med sud I eyrum vid spilum endalaust, which NME points out will be re-released on November 24 with a fancy 200-page hardcover book and DVD video content and costing a pretty penny (approx $85). Gotta combat that collapsing Icelandic economy somehow, I guess.

The Globe & Mail and Canadian Press talk to Feist about the charitable aspect of her upcoming cross-Canada tour which has two dates in Toronto – November 1 at Massey Hall and November 3 at the Air Canada Centre.

JAM, The Portland Mercury and have features on Chad Van Gaalen.

Minnesota Public Radio welcomes The Magnetic Fields to their studios for a session.

Daytrotter has a downloadable session with Black Kids.

NPR is streaming Ra Ra Riot’s show in DC this past weekend in its entirety.