Tuesday 17 February 2009

Amanda Palmer, Amanda F**king Awesome

Ok considering I'm a huge fan there's no point in me trying to review the gig so I'm just going to give a bit of a summary of the night with review like sections. Click the read more for an overview of the night.

I arrived at the sugar club without a ticket. This is usually a bad start when trying to attend a concert but I pressed on regardless. After many walks up and down the queue calling out for a spare ticket I was eventually rewarded by a kind man whose 3 friends had cancelled on him last minute. I got my ticket cost price for €16. Bargain.
Going up and down the queue I had discovered a few people who didn't have tickets so I informed them of the spare tickets down the line and got rewarded by getting a place at the front of the queue and some company for the night.

Anyway, doors opened a little bit later than listed (This delay was due to a lack of a working piano as we discovered later) and everyone piled in to try get good seats. For those who haven't been in the sugar club the seating arrangement for this kind of gig is odd but provides an intimacy rarely found in any other venue. The tiered seating means everyone can see and the comfortable seats make for a nice break from the usual 3 hours standing up being bumped into by some drunk who insists on singing the lyrics to different songs at the top of his lungs (its always a guy) whenever there's a break between songs. Bonus points must be given for the merchandise on the night. T-Shirts were an extremely affordable €10 which left plenty of money for drink/food etc.

The support came from a gravel voiced undertaker by the name of Rohan Kriwaczek. Having had a falling out with the rest of his band, he performed a solo show consisting of songs that reminded me of Swordfishtrombones era Tom Waits meets Danny Elfman. The few tracks that really stood out were 'Big Shot', a venomous ode to the big bankers and major company heads, Who would have known, a bittersweet part-love song to the singers ex-wife and the closer 'The Undertaker's Ball' which was a tongue-in-cheek tale about the goings on at undertaker's parties. The set was short and sweet but made its point perfectly.

A short break and then Amanda Palmer took the stage. Clothed in an antique dress she proceeded to open the show with an unaccompanied version of 'The Wind That Shakes The Barley' by Robert Dwyer Joyce. Swiftly ripping off the dress to reveal a t-shirt and stockings she burst into a blistering performance of 'Astronaut' the lead track off her solo album 'Who Killed Amanda Palmer'. Unfortunately Zoe Keating, who provided support and played cello on a few tracks at the previous Academy gig, was not in attendance and this particular song suffered somewhat but the energy with which it was performed did help make up some of the ground lost.

The gig was a slightly more laid back affair than her previous performance with more tear jerkers, slow burners and covers however this matched the feel of the venue and resulted in an incredibly memorable night. A few technical difficulties during the set, namely 'Bad Habit' and forgetting the lyrics to one verse of her newest song did little to damage the strength of the performance and were dealt with with an endearingly self deprecating sense of humour. The highlight of the night was the closer 'Half Jack' from the Dresden Dolls first album. The encore came in the form of a leap offstage into the crowd for a solo acoustic ukelele performance of the Radiohead classic 'Creep'. The capacity crowd was encouraged to sing and sing they did. This was one of those moments when the crowd feels truly connected with one another and even when it was over everyone left with a smile on their face.

Anyway for another dose of Amanda Palmer and a Book signing by Neil Gaiman head down to Chapters on Parnell Street today at 5. I will most definitely be there.

Set List:

Wind that shakes the barley
I Want You But I Don't Need You (by Momus)
Bad Habit
My Favourite Things (from the Sound of Music)
Mrs O.
I Google You (Lyrics by Neil Gaiman)
Guitar Hero
Trout Heart Replica (New Song)
Runs In The Family
House That I Grew Up In
Poem (An actual poem not a song called poem)
Oasis (I think this was here but I can't be sure I neglected to take it down)
Half Jack

PS - In a testament to how nice Amanda Palmer's fans are, when I missed my last bus I was given a floor to sleep on and a sleeping bag to sleep in by a very nice guy called Dean who I'd been talking to when I was looking for a ticket. I even got breakfast! So I just want to say an extremely big thank you and to anyone who reads this if you end up in a similar situation in either role please follow this guys example.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amanda Palmer is either a dumbass scientologist or just naive. She hangs around with Scientologist Cult member Neil Gaiman who appears in graduate lists in The Auditor Worldwide. Neil Gaiman has given over $100,000.00 to Scientology and the US Gaiman family were awarded “Patrons" of Scientology for 2004 & 2006 (the highest ranking membership of the International Association of Scientologists). According to Celebrity Scientology blog Neil Gaiman takes services at FLAG.