Three Imaginary Girls

Seattle's Indie-Pop Press – Music Reviews, Film Reviews, and Big Fun

"Broadcast Oblivion, Visqueen, the Fitness, Cex, the Postal Service, Lloyd's Rocket and Johnny Marr and the Healers. {April-May 2003}"

Once again, we saw more bands play than we had time to write about. We attempted to adhere to our 100 words per article practice, but also, we've fallen off the minimalist wagon a bit. So we bring you: 848 words about seven bands. Yeah, yeah… just hush up and read 'em!

Broadcast Oblivion
{4.22.03 at the Sunset Tavern}

I'd never heard of Broadcast Oblivion before catching them opening for Visqueen at the Sunset Tavern. My observations? 1) These boys don't take their rock lightly 2) This should be no surprise as the band consists of band members from Scared of Chaka and the Murder City Devils 3) Frontman/vocalist Cisco has the largest mouth I've seen sing since that "Love in an Elevator" video and 4) Cisco needs to brush up on his Journey skills ("those crazy nights, I do remember, in my youth…").

Keep your eyes peeled for a Phil Ek'ed debut CD in an indie-record store near you…

{4.22.03 at the Sunset Tavern}

"Suddenly we were fine with it that way"

You know how TIG always loves us some Visqueen. After the erratic night of music at the Showbox, I fled to the comforts of Ballard (more specifically, the packed-to-the-gills Sunset Tavern) for the consistently amazing talent of Flotard, Warnick, and Hooker. As always, they positively rocked. The highlights: it was Ben's 30th birthday, Rachel said both "booger" and "cock" into the mic, Rachel dedicated "You Were the Sun" to Kurt Bloch (of the Fastbacks), Kim… was cool, as always… and you know what else? Visqueen has gotten far too popular to play so small a venue… 

The Fitness
{5.01.03 at Crocodile}

"gianni versace or joanie loves chachi — some say"

The Fitness. Photo by Ryan Schierling.The Fitness. I love this band. Any girl who can convincingly rhyme "haute couture clothes" with "brand new nose" deserves to be revered for her pop-goddess sensibilities. With obvious nods to old-wave Vogue, the Fitness whined and pouted and cooed and snooted their stylie way thru the set — all trashy-flashy and oh-so culture icons — some say. Frontwoman Brie strutted that stage with a slightly fake (including accent) "la-tee-da" Justine Frischmann sensuality, put on with hand firmly on hip and tongue lightly in cheek. Or wait — strike that, reverse it…

Oh yeah — as if they could be more petulant — they went on to cover the Ramones' "Beat on the Brat." Oh yeah? "Oh yeah." Did I mention, I love this band?

{5.01.03 at Crocodile}

Cex. By Ryan Schierling.Initially, the fact that I had a lively Fitness recap conversation in a comfortable booth in the back of the bar resulted in my deciding to forego the Cex portion of the show. That plan quickly changed when Ryan came back to the booth with the photo to the right on his digital camera and said "You've got to go see this!" Not one to question such a statement I darted to the stage. But, Cex (aka Ryan Kidwell) had taken to the dance floor. Sweaty and only in his red running shorts and Reeboks, he electrified the room with his one of a kind mix of a quadshot caffeine buzz, anti-suburbia-style lyrics and ADD. Live, he had the message of a Desaparecido-Conor Oberst with the delivery of an early Eminem that I've been looking for… and he ended the show with one of the most darling quotes ever, "I'm also really normal if you want to talk to me. I love you. Bye."

The Postal Service
{5.01.03 at Crocodile}

"When we kiss then they're perfectly aligned"

The Postal Service. By Ryan Schierling.They covered Phil Collins.

The Postal Service — everyone's favorite indie-come-electronic superband, featuring Death Cab for Cutie's Ben Gibbard, Dntel's Jimmy Tamborello, and for tonight's show, Rilo Kiley's Jenny LewisSub Pop-signed, about to become bigger than God, the Postal Service — ended their set by covering Phil Collins' "Against All Odds." They even broadcast clips of the film in the background during the song. Ben dedicated it as, "A tribute to English men with male-patterned baldness."

I think it was the greatest thing I've ever seen.

Lloyds Rocket
{5.08.03 at Chop

"Bringin' me down, down on the ground"

Lloyds Rocket. By Ryan Schierling.Lloyds Rocket represents an endurance of the rock — the pummel of two wailing guitars, the pound of the drums, the roar of that voice. If only I'd been wearing a bra, I might have flung it on the stage. Slight tangent: speaking of "bringin' me down on the ground," I must again note the number of folks I witnessed trip or outright fall on those newly-installed levels at Chop Suey. Nothing says "rock and roll" like knees-hitting-the-ground while keeping drink in the glass.

Ooh, remember how last time I said the Rockets were all hottie black-hair-dyed rocker guys? Go check them out on Ryan's Lloyds Rocket page. Nummy!

Johnny Marr and the Healers
{4.30.03 at Graceland}

"He is the magic"

Raise your hand if you loved the Smiths and never got to see them play live!

As much as I yearn to fulfill my live-Smiths-show needs, Johnny Marr and the Healers are no nostalgia band. For better or worse, I heard not a remnant of "How Soon is Now" echoing in the brilliant songs from their Boomslang release. Johnny was the magic — wooing both his guitar and his audience with endearing banter throughout the set.

Another new igDana theory: Johnny is pioneering the return of "Blank and the Blank" band names. Surely the world has grown weary of THE bands (as in, The Vines, The Vells, The Hives). Bring back names like the Huey Lewis AND the News, Katrina AND the Waves, and Echo AND the Bunnymen of 20 years ago! I feel a revivalist movement, and Johnny Marr and the Healers are heading it… but in nomenclature only. If you want the Smiths-sound, you've gotta fork up the $75 a ticket next time Morrissey comes back, or go listen to Hatful of Hollow again.