This post is part of a series in which we review bands playing around town on Tuesday nights.
The Hoot Hoots
Tuesday, June 21
"I don't know how I'll get things done today, when all I want to do is go outside and play," sang Adam Prairie of the Hoot Hoots last night at the High Dive. It was an easy thought to sympathize with--on a beautiful, sunny day the last thing anyone wants to do is go into a windowless venue and see a show. Luckily for the audience, the Hoot Hoots are cheerful and engaging enough to make missing a few rays of precious Northwest sunshine seem trivial. Besides, even though it was the longest day of the year, it was finally dark when the Hoot Hoots started to play.
The Hoot Hoots are a band working in a genre you don't see too much in Seattle these days, sort of psych-power-pop (they covered "Mr. Blue Sky" by ELO, if that gives you a hint, but you could equally imagine a choice of "Birdhouse In Your Soul"). Their songs are fun and a bit spastic, occasionally about textbook subjects like love but more often dealing with outer space or the annoyance of having to wait all day to pick a friend up from the airport when you're anxious to see them. Singer Adam Prairie (his brother Chris drums and sports a matching beard) can croon, growl, and pull off a respectable falsetto, and sometimes uses all three techniques in the course of a single song. The band is fond of costumes, and celebrated the solstice with bassist Geoff Brown in a bunny suit, keyboard player Christina Ellis sporting a child's star costume, and Adam Prairie wearing a full-length, hooded rainbow caftan.
It was obvious from their performance (and their name, and their "Silly Lecture Series" videos on YouTube) that the Hoot Hoots exist primarily to have a good time, rather than to put on an excessively polished live show or achieve world domination. Yes, watching them you get the feeling that a band is a band is a band. But man, it's so refreshing to see a band having fun and getting into it instead of taking an overly serious, pretentious approach. For that, Hoot Hoots, we salute you.
Random notebook dump: Why wasn't a band member dressed as an owl?