Live Review

Back to School Night: The World Record, Ann Lynn, Slings, Sendaero

SONGWRITER'S SUPPER CLUB AT DIPIAZZA'S, LONG BEACH
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 5

Photo by Amy Theilig
Photo by Amy Theilig

For some bands, it's black eyeliner and matching military getups. For others, it's technicolor balloon drops and dancing bunny rabbits. But why settle for all that≠—makeup, costumes, onstage re-creations of acid trips—when you can catch a live show that's far cuter—and prehistoric—by a couple of guys from Anaheim? Orange County, meet Slings: they perform singsong-y rollickers Š la Yo La Tengo—when Yo La Tengo goes for the toned-down twang, and maybe mixed with a pinch of Neutral Milk Hotel, or even Love—alongside adorable, moveable, fourth-grade-science-fair dinosaurs. And while I'm still not quite certain what a red T. rex and green brontosaurus have to do with songs that drip with xylophone melodies and happy-trails-to-you whistling, I can vouch for this much: it works. Watching their set from a chair at the bar—behind a cluster of various members from the World Record (whose set I unfortunately missed) and Ann Lynn (reviewed in this spot last issue), evidently all fans and friends of the band—I'd find myself getting wrapped up in a drone-y guitar solo or cozy harmonica bit, and then, when the dinosaurs began dancing, bursting into a silent fit of giggles and smiles. It's maybe the best pick-me-up, oh, ever. And just when I thought it all couldn't get any more sweet or lovey-dovey—the show was a CD-release party for The Sounds When We Move, a compilation Slings put together featuring bands that inspire them (aww)—I hear a band member say something about special this-night-only buttons and a table where you could make them. Seriously? Arts and crafts, too? Yet there was still more sugar to be heaped on top of this already to-die-for night: show closers—and the prized object of Chris Ziegler's obsession—Sendaero, who constructed a wall of sometimes light pop, sometimes heavy rock behind lead singer Carole's always heavy, sexy, sad voice. Afterward, I could do nothing but exit in quiet disbelief: dinosaurs, arts and crafts, and guitars? Why can't every show be like Back to School night?

 
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