A WAKE HUMAN with TWO APPLE TOBACCO, EVAN SYMONS and STOLEN ORGAN FAMILY BAND at Purple Crab

1 (8)Lauren Eldridge attended and Jill Hancock photographed the 9 January 2010 show at the Purple Crab:

Stolen Organ Family Band played a duo show at the Purple Crab. Conor Mack plays a slender guitar while Miss Kelly wears vintage clothes and glasses. Their songs are upbeat and fast-paced, but often contain rather negative lyrics (from what I can hear). They are professionally eccentric, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. Conor’s voice ranges from falsetto to low-pitched, while Kelly’s voice is a good compliment to his. She begins their set on what looks like a mini-Rock Band drum kit, while Conor plays the keyboard. Their first song is “Here Comes Baby,” a cute song with a circus feel. Then he switches to acoustic guitar for the rest of the set and she rotates between keys and various percussion, including a vintage suitcase that she beats with a soft mallet (the kind you’d use on a cymbal). Mic placement is a bit of a problem when they play the keyboard, but it’s not the end of the world. The harmony in “There R 2 Many Hours in the Day” is more impressive than in any other song.

1 (12)Evan Symons is a one-man band, originally discovered by Backstage Vancouver’s Joseph Sloan. This is my first time listening to him, and while he’s not my cup of tea (I’m not a fan of backing laptop), I commend his use of video to make up for the lack of band members. I wonder how he chooses the images on his video, if there is any significance or relevance to the songs or set list. Unfortunately, due to the projector, it was too dark to get any decent shots of Evan during his set. Read Joseph’s review for a better idea of Evan’s performance and music.

Two Apple Tobacco are as theatrical as Hawksley Workman, but musically I’d compare them to Pink Martini. The five band members are crammed onto the small stage at the Purple Crab, but they function well despite the lack of space. 1 (27)The songs sound impressively long, but it’s probably because the songs are diverse and constantly changing, much like Noobie Noobinson. The lyrics became hard to distinguish at times, but that was a combination of poor sound and having three sets of vocals at times, and not always singing the same thing. All three have good voices though, I’m impressed. They’re like a jazzy group I’d choose as cruise ship entertainment (and I mean that in the best possible way). Great use of the flute, it’s a nice touch. I’d keep an eye on this band, and try to make it out for their next show.

1 (35)A Wake Human music may not be my cup of tea, but it certainly contains 100% cool people. Joseph Sloan (guitar and vocals) and Poib Fehr (drums, vocals, strange noises) are genuinely kind and always pleasant. They’re adding a bass player which should bring their sound to a whole new level, but he hasn’t started yet. At this particular show, the sound is not stellar so the vocals are murky. The drums and guitar are so complicated it’s unbelievable; Poib puts the thrash in thrash. Joseph wears a blue toque, aviators, a bow tie and a “Proud Father of Twins” T-shirt. Poib, of course, is shirtless. Joseph is charming and funny on stage, speaking with an easy level of comfort that puts the audience at ease too. It’s hard to imagine him feeling uncomfortable. Scroll down to their set list to read some of the introductions to their songs.

STOLEN ORGAN FAMILY BAND SET LIST
1. Here Comes Baby
2.
3. Bastard Shit-Head Son of a Baby Boomer (I know those ladies be smitten by the way I wear my mittens)
4.
5.
6. There R 2 Many Hours in the Day
7.

EVAN SYMONS SET LIST
1.
2. “It’s about my favourite flowers in the whole world, and those who want to eradicate them: dandelions.”
3.
4. “This one’s inspired by the death of my ex-father-in-law, who appeared to me in a dream after he died.” – This one is the closest to my taste
5. Personal Boundary Line
6.
7. “This song is sort of f*cking ridiculous, but it’s true.” – Another good song, perhaps my favourite

TWO APPLE TOBACCO SET LIST
1. Frank Zappa
2.
3. “We’re going to slow it down for you.”
4. “This is for all you sluts out there”
5. “Race and religion” – Their tightest and possibly best song of the bunch

A WAKE HUMAN SET LIST
1.
2.
3. “This song is about scrounging for weed, when you’re so desperate you’ll resort to things unknown to normal people. You’ll look behind couches and under couch cushions and in closests that have not been looking in for months.”
4. Unique Tongues (Celebrate your life) – This is one of my favourite songs, because I love the slow intro and mid-section. Poib is ridiculous on his drum kit! Joseph ends with “Thank you, you sexy audience, you.”
5. “This song is about Boy George. I have his name tattooed to my underwear. It’s true. That’s how I know it’s mine.”
6. “This song is about pinching a lot of noses. Have you ever gone around a room and pinched peoples’ noses? Do it right now… Try and pinch someone’s nose every day.”
7.
8.
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10. Tapped Bulls Ear

Comments (4)

 

  1. […] is an unusual band, but not in a crazy way (wait until you read about the show I attended the next night at the Purple Crab!). Cynthia Hall’s voice is quite low, but she can still reach every high note she aims for. […]

  2. […] or read the review at BackstageVancouver.com, […]

  3. Courtney says:

    Hey, thanks for the review!

  4. […] a recent review of TAT, Lauren Eldridge of BackstageVancouver […]