The Rosebuds + No Kids and Kindness Kind at the Tractor Tavern, Seattle | 20 November 2008
It may have been jazz walk night in Ballard on Thursday, but in the Tractor there was nothing but indie rock. The Rosebuds were in town in support of their fourth album Life Like. It’s somewhat of a return to form after last year’s Night of the Furies which was more synth oriented, evoking comparisons to the 80’s and New Order. Myself, I prefer the more southern gothic style Rosebuds and Life Like is a welcome return to what feels like more comfortable environs for the band. Ivan’s big wide open guitar playing has a Morricone spaghetti western and lonely surfer feel all at once.
Even though the album is less dance-y than it’s predecessor, the Rosebuds still like to have a good time and their show was all about getting us to dance, sing along and ahem, do their version of the Macarena. Bow to the Middle is their line dance song and the band really tried to get everyone to do it, but you could tell by the squirming in the crowd that no one was going to walk to the left and bow to the middle. Instead the dancing was lead by Kelly Crisp who is one half of the core Rosebuds along with significant other Ivan Howard. Crisp was a ball of energy behind her keyboards bouncing around and jumping off stage a couple times to dance with the audience. There were a bunch of people dancing, but the band had less trouble getting everyone to do the backing vocals and sing the choruses for the Nice Fox and Wild Cat. The Rosebuds are a great live band, I’ve never gone home disappointed the numerous times I’ve seen them, and this night was certainly no exception. My favorite song of the night and on the new record is In the Backyard. It’s been around for a while but finally made it on to the new record. It has a Talk Talk like synth line and Ivan’s vocals are at their dark soulful best, a real beauty.
mp3: Rosebuds – In the Backyard (from Life Like)
The band had some great merch too, hand painted shirts by Kelly. One was of the Swedish flag that got snatched up pretty quickly as well as cool robot one. They also were selling a homemade cd called the Rosebuds Fun Book. It had a bunch of covers and remixes on it like this Spoon cover.
mp3: Rosebuds – Change My Life (Spoon cover from Fun Book #2)
Buy some Rosebuds records why don’t ya?
Vancouver, BC’s No Kids were pretty good as well. Sporting two keyboards and an excellent drummer the trio’s soulful post rock was awkward, but in a purposeful good way. Singer Nick Krgovich with his horned rim glasses and button up shirt was the essence looked like he would be more comfortable in an office mailroom than on stage, but he easily won me over with his earnestness and good songs. They reminded me a little of Sea and Cake, the Forms, the Week that Was and even Momus and Steely Dan. If you like any one of those you will be into the joy that is No Kids.
mp3: No Kids – For Halloween (from Come Into My House)
Kicking off the night was Seattle’s very own Kindness Kind. I’m always pleasantly surprised when a local band evoke the sound of the UK. The Kindness Kind have an excellent guitarist in Charles Larson and singer Alessandra Rose who has a gothic way of singing that reminds me of Siouxsie Soux, or more Juanita Stein of Australia’s the Howling Bells. Rose commands attention with her striking features and voice. With the demise of the Hungry Pines who they also share similar sound aesthetic, discovering the Kindness Kind is quite a consolation. This was the band’s album release show, celebrating the release of their self-titled second cd.
There are more pictures from the night over at my flickr page.