Friday, 22 October 2010

Grass Widow, La Batterie

It was to be my first event at the newly opened venue Marie-Antoinette, which I was pretty excited about. It's under the train tracks near Jannowitz-Brücke and reminds me a bit of a room you could rent for a function like a wedding reception. Nicely decorated with cloth panes on the ceiling and water projected on to the walls, the room is overall very basic and plain. Its layout, one open room, also doesn't allow for privacy or hiding.
In my case, this was very welcomed on this 14th October, since this was one of those events which draws together people from many different walks of life. It was possible to just mingle among the crowd and pretty much talk to everybody that you knew without having to look too hard for your people. Easy socialising which made for a pleasant cosy evening among friends.

La Batterie were the opening band and local to Berlin. The focus of the band is on the drummer who sings partly in French (explaining the band name) and partly in English. The lady is accompanied by a guitarist and a keys player. Although I enjoyed their indie-pop with rhythm changes for several songs, their set was pretty extensive and didn't hold my attention for the entire performance.

Grass Widow, on the other hand, did manage to draw my attention. But I was disappointed nevertheless. Before the gig, these memories flashed to my head: standing at Amoeba, asking if there was a record I could bring back to Europe and Grass Widow being the answer; unwrapping the record back home and listening to it for the first time and liking it. And here I was, at the show and I wasn't enjoying it.
Granted, technical issues were dominating the first few songs. A power cut or similar hulled us in darkness while the girls on stage couldn't continue the performance and when the power came back on, the equipment seemed to take its time. Thereafter however, the actual gig was mediocre and just didn't live up to expectations, possibly due to it being the last show of the tour. The audience didn't get into it, the songs were lacking the energy known from the recordings. Nice pop music to have a drink to, smart ladies to entertain you, but musically not the bang everyone there was hoping to experience. Or so was my impression.

I am still glad that I went and supported one of the interesting girl groups around at the moment and with all the sweet people there and a kick-ass djane, the evening can be considered a success.


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