Dum Dum Girls, Beach House,
Dum Dum Girls, Beach House, Sunday, August 29 Marymoor Park
Sunday, August 29
So the big news from this show is that the headliners, Vampire Weekend, bailed. After keeping the crowd waiting for an hour and a half, they had a lackey come out on stage and announce that one of the band members was ill and that the show they'd paid $50 for would not be happening. Even if I choose to believe that story, there's a couple things wrong here:
1. Why was the crowd kept waiting, standing around, all in vain, for that long?
2. At the very least, one of the band members could have come out and apologized and explained the situation with more detail and finesse instead of some random dude, who I actually felt bad for, because as soon as the announcement was made, people started screaming "fuck you!" at him.
The situation just wasn't handled that well. The night ended with thousands of disgruntled fans leaving the park yelling, "fuck Vampire Weekend!" Bad news.
The good news is, the evening started out very, very well, and the two openers, Sub Pop's Dum Dum Girls and Beach House, both knocked it out of the park with their respective sets.
The four Dum Dum Girls came out on stage looking simply amazing in ripped tights, red lipstick, black lipstick, and black lacy, silky, and very short mini-dresses (their amps were also dressed in black lace). Those girls are hot. They opened with a Gothy version of the Rolling Stones' "Play With Fire" before playing a smattering of songs from their debut album, I Will Be, including the powerfully sultry "Baby Don't Go" and the quick and jolting "Jail La La" and "Bhang Bhang (I'm a Burnout)." The girls' three-part harmonies are dreamy, and the way they all (but particularly frontwoman Dee Dee) move and shimmy while they play their guitars is fierce and invitingly sexy. If only the Runaways had cleaned up so well.
There's something infinitely more magnetizing about being in a small, intimate indoor space with Beach House, but the echoing quality of their songs also lent itself well to the larger outdoor setting, especially at dusk. Victoria, on the keys and vocals, and Alex, seated and playing guitar while simultaneously playing bass pedals with his feet, were joined by a drummer and a keyboardist; the added instrumentation gave their soft songs like "Zebra," "Walk in the Park," "Gila," and "Used To Be" a shinier sound. The lilting haze of "Silver Soul" was transformed into something massive. Victoria, who kept flashing peace signs at the audience, is a lion, with her mass of long, tangled hair and her throaty voice. When they played their new tune, "White Moon," she accompanied her vocals with a dance that was something of a mixture between the hippie sway and the Egyptian; but her biggest moment came during "Take Care." That song was a smash, mainly because the crowd went nuts when Victoria started head-banging and whipping her head around with the rhythm. She really never should wear that hair up in a ponytail.
Personal Bias: Beach House is one of my favorite bands; every time I see them perform I'm reminded of why. I've never been a Vampire Weekend fan and it looks like that won't be changing any time soon.
The Crowd: Mixed, although down by the stage where I was standing there were a lot of braces, giggling tweens, and a few kids playing the penis game. You know the one.
Overheard in the Crowd: "I'm leaving now." That was immediately after the Beach House set; a good amount of people took off -- and they ended up missing exactly nothing.