Tonight in Seattle:  

Hazelwood Motel, Animals at Night, with Black Daisy

Photos by Hot Avocados Photography

7 Jan 2009 at Neumo's

I knew heading into the Neumo's show this past Thursday that Point Juncture, WA (hailing from Portland, OR) wasn't going to be making it up, thanks to the Great Northwest Highway Flood of 2009. Travel plans were suspended, parties were cancelled, people sat in traffic, and bands got delayed. So when my friend and I walked up to the door and checked the lineup, part of me was hoping that things had turned into a two-band night. The old lady, cranky, day-job part; not the photographer-slash-enthusiast, William Miller, new girl in Seattle part. Obviously. And being that new girl in town, I didn't know what was in store for me when I saw Black Daisy staring back at me from the opening spot. I just knew it would be a few hours before Hazelwood Motel headlined, and that I'd been impressed with Animals at Night's resume, and I huffed, and went inside.

Seriously. I was huffing. Huffing! At getting to see a bunch of awesome bands, two that I didn't know, one of the ones I didn't know with a sampling pedigree to make the most gold-medal-toting hipster-Olympics elitists take notice, and of course, Hazelwood Motel. The latter being proven brilliant, through personal experience with both album and live show. As we wound our way through Moe's, I found it odd that door protocol had decided to filter us from bar to side hallway to side-stage entrance, instead of the normal front entry route. And as I walked into the main space of Neumo's, I got surprise number two of the night: curtains.

Yummy, red velvet-y velour-y curtains. And some tables, and chairs! And more curtains! I saw Leigh, and checked in with her on this odd state of affairs -- apparently, Neumo's will have what they call "curtain shows" from time to time, to provide space for bands that are expecting a smaller draw to have a higher profile show. Neat, right? I'm all for anything that helps to better spotlight such things, as I'm sure we all are.

Now fully in the huff-free zone, the goodness that is Black Daisy descended upon us, like a beautiful, dirty, nasty little secret. Surprise number three: a band so bad that they're good, a band well-versed in bad being good. They did it bad, and they did it right -- kicking up the kitsch a notch with an iPod drummer, and Troy Nelson on lead. The night only got better with the Animals at Night set, a two-man collective of percussion, guitar, keys, samples, and head-bobbing bliss (surprise number four, if you're still counting). And it all left us well-primed for our favorite part-time perfectly-subdued better-than-shoegazers, Hazelwood Motel. Who, by the way, spend the other part of the time blowing our minds with their brilliant lyrics, whip-tight delivery, and full-force big-guitar freakouts. Their set, along with all the others, did our Thursday night right. Which was not a surprise at all.

Black Daisy [by Hot Avocados Photography]

Black Daisy [by Hot Avocados Photography]

Animals at Night Animals at Night [by Hot Avocados Phtotography]

Hazelwood Motel [by Hot Avocados Photography]

Hazelwood Motel [by Hot Avocados Photography]

Hazelwood Motel [by Hot Avocados Photography]

Hazelwood Motel [by Hot Avocados Photography]

You can catch Black Daisy and the Animals and Night around town, and don't miss Hazelwood Motel's next show at the Sunset on February 6th. See you at the shows!

Why do you spend three paragraphs talking about yourself and only a paragraph talking (vaguely) about the music? That's not much of a concert review.

Hazelwood Motel were insufferably dull. The songs sounded alright but by sleepwalking through their set they totally lost my interest.

Next time please write about the music. That's what we're here to read about.

I had been thinking about maybe checking out that show instead of seeing Hey Marseilles at the Tractor that night. Glad I didn't. Black Daisy is insufferably terrible. And that has no place whatsoever on a bill with Hazelwood Motel.

Hey Marseilles, incidentally, were wonderful as always, and the Tractor was completely packed.

shotty review aside, these pictures are god awful. whoever took them has no sense of composition whatsoever...

What is up with you sourpuss people? I think the pictures are great and the write up is full of personality. It makes me feel like I was at the show with a friend.

I do have to thank you for chiming in though. Sourpuss or not it's nice that you took the time to join the discussion.

I too think the pictures are lovely. The lighting on the one with the drummer alone is so ethereal!

Well done!

As for the sourpusses- The people who write these reviews do it for the same reason you read them- we love music, we love the people who make it, and we want to be able to yell "Dude, this was so cool, wish you could have been there!" into the ether. Everyone has a certain style with which they do it, and a reader never knows whether or not this is a first review of a fledgling music writer, or maybe the person writing it didn't really have anything that great to say about the band and was just "trying to be nice" and fill a little space, or maybe they didn't eat breakfast and wrote with a low blood sugar. Everyone is totally entitled to an off day, as well as to an opinion, but if someone is putting something positive into the music community, why bag on that? It's already plumb full of dicky hipsters and people who think they're better than someone else because they have the b-side of some band that was only printed in Luxembourg. Chill, please.

mimi-
that was mean... funny, and accurate, but mean... *laughs* i for one found the most intriguing part of the review to be the mention of "curtain shows"... does anyone else feel the sense that the curtains are coming down slowly on a lot of local live music...?

i really hope neumos isn't providing us with some sad foreshadowing... there's this eerie sense that neumos and the tractor could be the only music rooms left a year from now. but now i'm worried only one of the two might make it...

no more mention of "curtains" please.

ps- i'm holding out hope for a new and enlivened Crocodile Cafe jumping back in the fray, just in the nick of time.

In reply to Kirk's comment on Black Daisy.... Have you no sense of Humor or taste? Bravo for Black Daisy! And poop on you mr. kirk!

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