Wednesday, December 07, 2016

SMooCH 2016

The line-up for the sixth SMooCH 2016 (Seattle Musicians for Children's Hospital) was stellar. What a night! Father John Misty, The New Pornographers, J Mascis and guests, and Naked Giants. 

Apparently the benefit was sold out. The venue was packed to the brim, but with sufficient breathing space. I like it because it's always so well organized- fast set changes and the bands start punctually. It's pretty much standing space only, with a few high chairs dotting the bar counters. Quite casual too, unless you attend the earlier dinner event which is more of a corporate social schmooze. Good food.

Seattle up-and-coming garage rock three-piece Naked Giants opened the night. They were pretty good! They just released their first EP, and graduated high school in 2014. I'm not sure how many people have compared them to a young Mudhoney or even if it's fair to do that, but the similarities were striking that night.

Okay, the man is more of a rabid fan of J Mascis. He ran all the way upfront to well, fall at the guitarist's feet. Hurhurhur. We were a little surprised that he played this early in the line-up. Maybe he has an early bedtime. Hurhurhur. But it's a charity benefit, so perhaps guests' preferences were taken into consideration. J Mascis did one loud fabulous acoustic set, playing songs from Dinosaur Jr., like 'Little Fury Things', 'Blowing It', 'Get Me', 'Alone', and also stuff from his 2014 solo album 'Tied to a Star'. I made the mistake of asking the man what acoustic guitar J Mascis was using, and got a side eye. He hollered, "A Martin! Always a Martin! He has an album in '96 'Martin + Me'!" Oh yah hor. Erm....that was quite a terrible album anyhowly recorded live. :P

Before The New Pornographers played, the hosts rustled up a on-the-spot phone-in donation drive, including a video of a family who is beneficiary of the hospital's subsidies. There was a shot of the hospital bills. Oh man, medical care in US is friggin expensive. I think the night raised USD3 million for the hospital. More to come from corporate sponsors, hopefully.

It was a bonus to hear The New Pornographers with Neko Case! I love her voice and songwriting! Totally enjoyed her solo gig (with session musicians) when she played in Singapore in 2014. But I really like her chemistry with The New Pornographers. And those songs. 😍 'Twin Cinema' and all! Plus one of my favorites 'The Laws Have Changed' from 2003. It was very fun jiving to the band!

Headlining SMooCH 2016 was Father John Misty, otherwise normally known as Joshua Michael Tillman. It was an odd choice to wind down the night with because of many half-drunk people in the room by this time who couldn't keep their voices down. But whatever, I enjoyed it. It was 11.40pm. I was having my first beer of the night because I didn't want to have to pee during the shows or in between. The last pee was done 3.5 hours earlier, slightly after the earlier dinner event in which I was well fed and watered.

It was just him on the piano first, then on the acoustic guitar. New songs and he announced he's done with his new album. I am such a fangirl. Of all his politically incorrect lyrics. As a musician, he's good. He's also pretty honest and witty on stage. I'm not sure he's that charming on stage. He can be rather annoying. Yes, I'm ignoring his possibly huge ego and narcissism.

No comments: