Saturday, January 29, 2005

The Winks at the Marine Club

Cellopeople, tell me: is there a precedent for wearing fishnet stockings while playing your instrument? Because if not, Tyr deserves some serious credit for this. It's a good idea. I mean, I don't want to seem lecherous or such, but it's interesting to look at. Todd's interesting to look at too, with his gangly rapturous dances, but I don't want to seem bisexual, either. Look, really, my attraction to the Winks is not primarily sexual. There is something very attractive, very charismatic, about both of the lead players, tho', I will say that. Between Todd flopping vertically about over his mandolin and Tyr demurely bowing her instrument, looking from side to side (since it's about all you can do for movin' around when there's a cello between your legs, but she makes it count) -- their motions each suit their musical roles and oddly complement each other. They're as interesting to look at as any band I've seen, or, well, at least since that Iggy Pop concert I went to back in the '80s, and Iggy Pop is damned interesting to look at, you gotta say that much about him.

Why do I like the Winks so much, tho'? I mean, aside from the obvious answers, like the fact that they ended tonight's set with a cover of Sonic Youth's "Expressway to Yr. Skull," say, including a lengthy noise jam for cello and mandolin and sax. That's a pretty funky thing to do. It was so cool sounding, in fact, I had to close my eyes at times to listen to them, thus proving that it isn't just looking at the Winks I find so interesting. They have some pretty quirky song structures, too, tho' it's still crowd pleasers like "Snakes" that I enjoy the most. Some fan even got up and danced to that one. Male, alone. Good for him; I remained seated.

What observations can I offer about the night, though? The Marine Club seems to attract a much younger audience than Blim did. I felt old and conspicuously balding, glad to have some paper to scribble on and hide behind. With a younger audience, the Winks were more playful and just a tad looser than at Blim -- they seemed like people who knew they were among friends. Much joking was done around a mysterious popping sound that emerged from the speakers periodically. They almost ended up performing with the tattooed sound guy on stage with them as he tried to sort it out... I think I'm going to just go to every damn gig they announce on their mailing list and observe how different environments affect them. I'm going to become some sort of Winks groupie, I swear.

I wish they'd played "Theme." Something about how Tyr sings "Jeez Louise" is very compelling.

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