Monday, May 19, 2008

Old 97's for Free

I caught the Old 97's promoting their new record, Blame it on Gravity at Waterloo Records last Friday. They did a free in-store from about 5p-6p. The store was pretty crowded by the time the band took stage, so much so that the store had a "bouncer" doing 1 in-1 out.

Image Courtesy of Ron Baker

I'm not a huge fan of the Old 97's but I like Ryan Adams, Wilco and Uncle Tupelo as well as free concerts. This is the first time I had seen a show at Waterloo records and although it was intimate the sound totally sucked. I was surprised because the soundsystem in store is pretty kick ass but the mix was no good. I could hear the sound of the guitar picks strumming, the vocals were buried too deeply in the mix, and the drummer should have just had hand percussion.

The performance itself was entertaining but certainly not life-changing/mind-blowing. It was just some pleasant adult-contemporary. My friend Tim wanted to know how the newest songs sounded compared to the old ones. Well I'm not THAT familiar but the new songs they played sounded a bit closer to pop than country. However, the closing track on the new album, The Onewas a real barn burner of a tune that the crowd really got into. As much as you can get into a performance standing in the aisles of a record store.

Anywho, I found some clips of the performance on YouTube:

The Old 97's - The One @ Waterloo Records

You can stream some of the new songs from the Old 97's website.