“Why are you standing? Sit down.”
Stephin Merritt’s opening remarks to the crowd gathered to see The Magnetic Fields at the Vogue theatre last night in Vancouver.
I immediately tucked away my earplugs, there would be no angering the tinnitus after this concert.
I also learned last night that Merritt himself suffers from tinnitus and likes to keep their concerts on the mellow side. Finally, a rock star after my own heart.
If you’ve never listened to The Magnetic Fields you should start with 69 Love Songs and then watch Strange Powers. The wonderful group of audiophiles I attended the concert with last night were musing over how to best describe Merritt. We seemed to all come to the consensus that he was a bit like Morrissey, but I would argue a little more bitchy and humourous. Although there are 4 other musicians on stage alongside Merritt, he is complimented most by Claudia Gonson, who in addition to playing piano, drums and providing vocals also manages the band. She brings things back down to earth and it’s refreshing to see the two of them play off each other.
And who couldn’t love a band who introduces a song with this preface, “In the 1900s in one of our many hometowns, Boston, there was once a accident at a molasses factory and smouldering hot molasses flowed, slowly, into the streets. Sadly killing many animals in its wake. This song is slower than that molasses.”
Although I would have liked to hear a bit more of their older material, it was still a fine show, and I can cross them off the list. I am so glad that I dragged myself out of bed, not feeling well, as the band were all drinking hot water, lemon and honey as I have been all weekend. If they can play sick, I can surely listen.
Who is on your concert dream list?