The Clinetele were headlining Saturday (June 2) at Subterranean, with another band I don’t know too well (Beach House), plus the Singleman Affair – who are quickly becoming one of my favorite Chicago groups. The Singleman Affair’s 2006 album was great, and the songs are even better in concert, now that it has become more of a true band than a cloistered solo-recording project. I can’t wait for the next Singleman Affair record, though it looks like I will have to wait until sometime next year.
As I said, I don’t know much about Beach House, though a fair number of other people at the show clearly did. A duo – female singer on vocals and keyboards, guy on guitar, both of them sitting down. Sort of techno (in a Broadcast sort of way) but not really. It struck me as pretty good, worth checking out on record.
The Clientele’s new album God Save the Clientele is a nice slice of Left Banke-style pretty ’60s orchestral pop and very English singing. It came off quite well in concert, with more of an emphasis on the guitar (including one great extended guitar solo that included a couple of quotes from “Eight Miles High”). The only problem was that the sound wasn’t so great – at least as far as the band was concerned. Monitor problems. Actually, from the audience it sounded pretty good except for the barely audible violin and backup vocals. The audio difficulties did not ruin the otherwise good concert.
Photographic notes: Could they turn on the lights in this place once in a while? Sheesh. It was extremely dark. I spent much of the night waiting for the musicians to move into those little spots that were actually illuminated by the two functioning spotlights.