In a Jewelbox: Fergus & Geronimo, Seapony and Idle Times

Fergus & Geronimo, Seapony & Idle Times at the Jewelbox Theatre, Seattle | 4 March 2011

I wasn’t expecting much from Fergus and Geronimo last night at the Jewelbox Theatre after being underwhelmed when I saw them a year ago at SXSW, but as luck would have it I was anything but underwhelmed.  The tiny Jewelbox is one of my favorite places to see a show in the city. It’s been around since the 1920’s. It is an intimate place to see a band holding about 100 people, with good sound. Besides the location a few other things had changed for Fergus and Geronimo in the last year besides the obvious, like Jason Kelly’s new haircut.  They’ve recently released an album on Seattle’s Hardly Art and re-jiggered their band with a new bass player and guitarist both of which were top notch.

The four piece fit snuggly on the small stage with Kelly behind the drums full-time (another change from the last time I’d seen them). They seemed right at home, exchanging friendly banter with the audience and showing off some humorous new songs: one about roman numerals (video below) and another about their guitarist getting hit on by a very inebriated woman. They also threw in a cover of Devo‘s Girl U Want, did some Powerful Lovin’,  their ode to Blind Muslim Girls and voila my impression of their live show is totally 180’d. Crazy how good a band can get in a year, they were a blast.

Newly signed to Hardly Art, Seattle’s  Seapony took the middle slot of the night.  I had seen them a while back and neglected to blog about it, but what I took away then was that they sounded good, but needed a drummer.  The same thoughts came to mind as I watched them last night, and the fact that they’re really shy. I don’t think they said anything except “this is our last song”.  Their songs are really good and twee, but the no drummer thing is kind of distracting to my aesthetics.  It’s early days for Seapony so we’ll see how things progress. They’ve got some great songs, I’m sure the delivery will come.

Openers Idle Times rocked my socks off, and if I would have ever gotten around to doing a best Seattle records of 2010, their self-titled debut on Hozac would have been near the top. Damn my indolence.

Here are the remaining Fergus and Geronimo dates go see ’em:

03.09.11 – Portland, OR – East End
03.10.11 – Oakland, CA – The New Parish
03.11.11 – Sacramento, CA – The Hub
03.12.11 – Los Angeles, CA – The Troubador
03.13.11 – Tucson, AZ – Sky Bar (free show)
03.14.11 – El Paso, TX – LIPS Lounge
03.15.11 – Marfa, TX – Padre’s
03.17.11 – Austin, TX – Force Field PR Party @ Shangri-La – set time TBA
03.18.11 – Austin, TX – Sub Pop / Hardly Art Showcase @ Red 7 – 12:15am
03.19.11 – Austin, TX – Hardly Art Pizza Party @ End of an Ear – 2:30pm
03.19.11 – Austin, TX – Panache showcase @ Mohawk (inside) – 10:30pm
03.23.11 – Nashville, TN – The End
03.25.11 – Richmond, VA – Strange Matter
03.26.11 – Baltimore, MD – Golden West
03.27.11 – Washington, DC – Comet Ping Pong
03.28.11 – Montclair, NJ – The Meat Locker
04.01.11 – Philadelphia, PA – The Ox
04.02.11 – Brooklyn, NY – Death By Audio

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