Live Review: A Weather; Simon Joyner, Yuppies tonight…

Category: Reviews — @ 5:43 pm April 15, 2010

by Tim McMahan,

It’s springtime at O’Leaver’s. The volleyball players are back, drunkenly flopping around out in the sand. The smoke hut has been dismantled and put away ’til next year, and there’s new outdoor furniture in the beer garden — handmade, thick, wooden benches and tables surrounding the perimeter, which I’m told have been weatherproofed with multiple layers of marine-quality spar varnish so as to never warp. It’s only a matter of time until those benches have been lovingly carved with dick jokes and badly drawn nude women with over-sized boobs. A topic of discussion last night: Would it be possible for someone to light this new wooden furniture on fire? Conclusion: I suppose, yes. With enough gasoline and time, anything will burn, even weather-treated moisture-sealed wooden planks. And at O’Leaver’s, nothing is fire-proof.

By the time A Weather took the stage last night, the volleyball players and their cars had disappeared, leaving the parking lot partially empty. A small crowd of around 30 was inside to hear the trio play a quiet, slightly withdrawn set that didn’t resemble their new album, but was good in its own way. Live, A Weather deconstructs their lush, dense music with a frontman who sings and (barely) plays an electric guitar, and a rhythm section that includes a bass player and a cute blond girl with a pretty voice that gently tap-tap-tapped on drums. Last night the music was all about bass and voices, together in a minimal setting that reminded me of ’90s band Bedhead. I liked it, but in the end I prefer the sound of their new album (Everyday Balloons), which has an added beauty and depth thanks to its keyboards. The album is a daylight walk through a forest in summer. Last night’s performance was that same walk, but in December with the trees bare — it’s still a beautiful stroll.

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Tonight at Slowdown Jr., Joe Jack Talcum of the Dead Milkmen performs along with Simon Joyner, Samuel Locke Ward and the Boo Hoos (Iowa City), and our very own Yuppies. $7, 9 p.m.

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One more correction — I said yesterday in my column that The Slumber Party showcase Friday night would be held at Slowdown Jr. In fact the showcase will be held on Slowdown’s big stage. All the more reason…

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