We saw them. At Jake's. AG had to get over the fact that we were inside Jake's, and what a strange place Jake's is, as AG had never been to Jake's before.
At one point, we were sure that we saw Jake himself, an older man wearing a shirt that only said "Jake's" across one of his breasts. A grizzled look upon his face surrounded by a mop of greasy hair suggested that this had to be the fellow.
I could only think of Wolf Parade songs. They're catchier than Sunset Rubdown songs. This seems to be a reasonable substitution for my mind to have made. After all, Spencer Krug is the same fellow who sang "I'll Believe Anything" and "You Are a Runner and I Am My Father's Son." I love those songs. Sunset Rubdown doesn't succeed in grasping my pop sensibilities like those songs did.
I do love "Idiot Heart" off of their new album Dragonslayer, though. He tells his listeners that he hopes that they die in comfortable pairs of shoes because they'll have an awful lot of walking to do where they're going. Sometimes I like that. Sometimes I feel like I've walked in on the last line of an argument in which Spencer has just unsuccessfully and awkwardly attempted to insult someone.
As we stood in the afterglow of having heard Elfin Saddle's set (she played a saw and sang in Japanese) and watched the toy drums and homemade cymbal sets get moved to the side of the stage, I, in a tipsy haze, again made fun of Spencer Krug's style of singing. The distinctive warble and strained feel of every note is almost as comical as it is distinguishing. We mimiced it into each other's ears and laughed. I suggested that it was possible that Spencer would overhear us and throw us out of the show, then sang the scenario in Krug. It was fun.
And then the show began. The first two songs off of Dragonslayer, including "Idiot Heart." In general, the show was primarily Dragonslayer, but that is to be expected. My mind was wandering quite a bit, as it does when I'm listening to music that doesn't necessarily interest me but it defines the moment. It used to happen when I would watch black metal and crust punk bands all the time. The droning, the vibrations, the volume...it pushes me to a higher state of mind. It only happens during these kinds of shows, and I don't usually listen to that kind of music outside of them.
I like Sunset Rubdown, but I don't love them. It was a good show, but I was left with one overwhelming impression of them, and that was because of the aura of pretention they eminated throughout the show. Spencer at times said things that were uncomfortable at best, and keyboard player seemed to showcase an attitude that said "I'm in Sunset Rubdown, and you're no one." When the audience forced them back on stage for an encore with a round of clapping, she said something that we didn't quite catch, but because of the audience's silence when she said it, we were all fairly aware that she had just said something that made us feel as though she was being condesending. I was sure that I heard "ticket" and "door" in her statement.
I realize that Pitchfork knows who you are and likes you, but that doesn't mean you have to treat people who paid $10 a piece to see you like they're "merely followers."
I will never pay to see them again.