May 6, 2008

"Huh, It's Like Their Playing 'Musical Instruments'"

Had myself a little trip to Denver on a Sunday night a little while ago (4/20) with Beth and Royce, and it was amazing. The show? Susan Susan, Bad Weather California, The Terrordactyls, Lake, and Half-Handed Cloud. Place? Rhinoceropolis. Result? Astonishingly good time :).

I even got some half decent recordings of the show, which I've hosted at the bottom of this post.

We got there a little early (per the usual), but the show started soon enough. Susan Susan, a relatively new, and local, band opened up the show. While the keyboard was turned up a little too loud in the beginning, someone helped the two out in noticing this, and, now well mixed (for Rhino standards), the band continued. A more cute duo there has rarely been. Soft sweet songs that warmed the heart, despite their slightly unpracticed sound. I couldn't think of a better band to open up a summery, feel good show.

On next was the infamous Bad Weather California gang. I thought it was weird seeing a band play at the Hi-Dive, and then see them play at Rhinoceropolis, but I'll tell you right now, it's even more weird to see a band play at the Ogden, then play at Rhinoceropolis. This being the case with Bad Weather California, I was expecting a less poppy performance than the one I saw when they opened for Daniel Johnston. Their set was certainly less poppy, but also no less entertaining. Personally, I'd say this set was the better of the two, because it seemed like they were more comfortable to let their hair down and get weird and expressive and all that jazz. Bad Weather California is one of those bands that you should feel bad for not seeing live, because they're a bit of an experience. Sad sad lyrics.

Third up was The Terrordactyls, a band I've been talking about here and there for a little while now. Well this was the first time I've gotten a chance to see them, and I was fairly pleased with the performance. Tyrel and Michael were joined by a drummer friend, which added a lot to their sound (I felt). Cute as every recording I've heard, Tyrel and Michael, appearing to be winging it, playfully half-squabbled their way through a half-hour set of sunshiney songs. If they didn't have fans prior to the show, they certainly did afterwards.

3 people took the "stage" next, posing as a band named Lake. What actually happened was that Two members of Lake (Eli Moore and Lindsay Schief I think), and John Ringhofer of Half-Handed Cloud went up and played songs written by Lake (sometimes spelled L.A.K.E.). After setting up the instruments, the band played what Beth described as "Musical Instruments," meaning that they changed places after each song (once they pretty much did it during a song). The Lake set was, on average, rather chill and, much like the rest of the show, summery and feel good. For some reason Lake really was the most touching band to play that night, and I don't really know why I think that way, but there ya go.

"Lake" ended their set, introduced that Half-Handed Cloud was going to play next, and then looked around and asked "do we really even need to leave the stage?" The 3 played Musical Instruments again , this time making sure the focus was on John Ringhofer. Sometimes Rhinoceropolis really surprises me, because so often they set up shows that have a number of great bands, but it is sometimes irregular to go to a show that has a majority of similar acts. Well, that's not true so much these days, but I'm used to rather schizophrenic shows at Rhinoceropolis. My point being that there could not have been a better act to end the show with. Reminding me of Foot Ox or the Mountain Goats (okay, you got me, I know that everything seems to remind of the Mountain Goats, but come on, can you really berate me for having a bit of an obsession?), John sang quick paced (not quite as quick as Ghost Mice mind you) sad sounding songs which seemed to cast a bit of a spell on the room. Now, I'm getting rather tired of such ridiculous descriptions, but I really do feel that that is the case. I dunno, maybe I was the only one to be effected by the magic that is Half-Handed Cloud, but I have a feeling that the Rhino-crowd is in touch enough to be with me on this. Truly wonderful.

The show ending slightly around 12:30AM, piled into the car for the drive back home, happy and ready to skip Spring all together and go straight into Summer.

Here's the live set (some of the tracks don't have titles because I don't have billion hours to spend looking up what song was what. All if it is amazing, so grab them all):

Artists: Susan Susan, Bad Weather California, The Terrordactyls, Lake, Half-Handed Cloud
Date: 2008-04-20
Venue: Rhinoceropolis, Denver, CO

Susan Susan - SS 1
Susan Susan - SS 2
Susan Susan - SS 3
Susan Susan - SS 4
Susan Susan - Nothing From Nothing/Just the Two of Us (Billy Preston/Bill Withers Cover)
Susan Susan - SS 6
Susan Susan - Santaria (Sublime Cover)
Bad Weather California - (spoken word piece)
Bad Weather California - This World Is Not My Home
Bad Weather California - BWC 3
Bad Weather California - BWC 4
Bad Weather California - BWC 5
Bad Weather California - BWC 6
Bad Weather California - BWC 7
The Terrordactyls - Decoration Daniel
The Terrordactyls - Fall
The Terrordactyls - TT 3
The Terrordactyls - I Want To Cry
The Terrordactyls - Swimming
The Terrordactyls - Shipping
The Terrordactyls - Friendship
The Terrordactyls - Baltimore
Lake - Oh The Places
Lake - Lake 2
Lake - Lake 3
Lake - Blue Ocean Blue
Lake - Helicopter
Lake - Dead Beat
Lake - Lake 7
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 1
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 2
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 3
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 4
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 5
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 6
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 7
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 8
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 9
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 10
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 11
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 12
Half-Handed Cloud - HHC 13

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