Ever go to a show and have a feeling that it would one day be one of those "I saw them back when" moments?
I had one of those at the Wexner Center last night.
There was a healthy crowd in the Perfomance Space to see Welsh-import The Joy Formidable, but surely nothing compared to what was on-hand for Ben Folds at the LC. But I'm willing to bet that someday a lot of people who were at that show will claim they were at this one.
If you need a reference point, I suppose the Yeah Yeah Yeahs are a reasonable start, if only because lead singer-guitarist Ritzy Bryan possess the sort of frenetic stage presence Karen O has made signature. Ritzy is absolutely tiny, peeking out from under a blonde bob and sporting a babydoll dress behind a guitar that seems bigger than her. But she can make one hell of a racket, both vocally and through walls of feedback-soaked strings.
Itís those warm and fuzzy tones that give a cacophonous edge to power pop songs that stick in your head like so much bubble gum. There are some overtones of My Bloody Valentine to go with a healthy dose of radio-ready songcraft.
Admittedly, they also play well to me as a musical Anglophile. Their earnest thanks to a typically subdued but attentive Wex crowd was charming and endearing, as bassist Rhydian Dafydd's smiling salutes of "Cheers!" played to an ironically dry audience. And Ritzy's impossibly soft speaking voice make it hard not grin every time she punctuated sentences with "fooking."
But it's that mix of being cheerily poppy on record and absolutely rocking the eff out live is what has me thinking this is a band you'll be talking about soon. The band has just an 8-track EP and a live album now, but with their full-length debut due in 2011, there's bound to be that one track that takes off on CD101 or elsewhere.
And you'll all be saying you saw them when.