Opening bands suck, part million

Saturday evening, d. and I went to P.A.’s Lounge to see Travels. They were great, despite Mona Elliott’s admission that she had food poisoning. Not as dramatic as her previous band, Victory at Sea, but the songs were beautiful and she and her boy had chemistry in spades. In fact, their harmonies rivaled — maybe even surpassed — those of John and Exene.

But first, we had to sit through a nearly hour-long set by the execrable duo (plus occasional drummer) Arms and Sleepers.

If they play your town, avoid them at all costs — unless you’re partial to soporific Stereolab wannabes (minus interesting melodies, rhythmic complexity, and artful arrangements). They’re the electronic instantiation of Spinal Tap’s Jazz Odyssey.

I hated their use of fey, superfluous novelty instruments (little xylophone, little accordion, melodica with creepy length of tubing, thumb piano). I hated the keyboardist’s stupid muttonchops and beard and his “oh I am so into this that I just can’t control it” headbanging. I hated the bassist’s near-constant pelvic thrusting. I hated the screen-saver film loops and handheld footage of power lines and trees. I hated their constant twiddling and fiddling with laptops and gadgets. I hate how they only list their own records under “Influences” on their MySpace page and they peddle their merch under “Sounds Like.” And oh, how I hate the band bio d. dug up:

Arms and Sleepers started one night in the back of an ambulances destined for Hampton Road in Boston’s South Side. In an alleyway a man was bleeding with a cassette player in hand, the play button still on. What sounded like recordings of a gospel choir blared from the tin speaker while down the street, a jazz band could be heard. The man was dying. He dropped the cassette player on the cement and closed his eyes, the sound carrying through the air into his ears for one last time. Though this moment in time died with him, his cassette lived on, and Arms and Sleepers was born.

They must be stopped.

4 Responses to “Opening bands suck, part million”

  1. 2fs says:

    Visit 2fs

    Welcome back to posty goodness, first of all.

    Anyway: Oogh - sounds hideous. The wunnerful, wunnerful thing about these here internet tubularities is that, no matter how stupid and embarrassing your youthful behavior is (please tell me these folks are no older than 25 or so), it’ll be there, online if only in archives, forever - so that your grandchildren, should they wish to embarrass you in front of your golfing buddies, can call up such things as your 2009 MySpace biography. Yay for the future!

  2. Janet says:

    Visit Janet

    Welcome back Trixie!!! “Instantiation” alone was worth the wait. :-)

  3. Ezra says:

    Visit Ezra

    Smells like Berklee.

    And to think people are afraid about a bio weapons lab in the South End. It’s already got Psy Ops!

  4. Heather says:

    Visit Heather

    Ugh–afterliving in Athens, Ga. off-and-on for 15 odd years I have had my fill of pretentious, shitty bands. They sound like major Decemberist wannabes:)

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