May 10, 2010
I’m not going to lie, I dread going to concerts at The Space. There is always a very uncomfortable vibe there, which I’m going to have to say is due to the layout of the venue. This was especially the case on Monday night when The Blow and Slam Donahue performed there. There was that overbearing awkward vibe in the room throughout the night, and while most acts would freak out under such conditions and throw a temper tantrum (See: Lovvers 7/28/09), Khaela Maricich of The Blow made it her mission to turn what was a terribly awkward situation into a very intimate night of great pop music.
There were only two bands on the bill Monday night, and when I say band I use that term very lightly since it was more like a night of karaoke (no instruments were used at all throughout the night). While The Blow used this technique to her advantage, the first act Slam Donahue could not.
The best way to describe the duo would be to say they are like a Jaguar Love cover band, and the singer is doing his best Johnny Whitney impression (and failing miserably at it). Their songs were all over the place, and though I tried my hardest to find some redeeming qualities in them, I just couldn’t. There was even a point during their set, when everything stopped for at least 5 minutes while the lead singer went around forcing his CDs on uninterested audience members, it was one of the more pathetic things I have witnessed at a concert. Regardless of Slam Donahue's inability to write a decent song, they were successful in maintaining my interest throughout the night and were at least entertaining.
Next up was The Blow, and after an insane and completely unnecessary 40 minute intermission she took the stage. Her set revolved around the storyline of her writing songs for a young unnamed Hollywood starlet (Lindsay Lohan) and how this girl didn’t end up using her songs, etc etc. It was half performance piece and half concert, which worked in her favor. The crowd came alive when she played crowd favorites like “Parentheses” and “True Affection”. Her stage presence and banter was so captivating that at times it was easy to forget she really only played about 8 songs. Maricich’s confidence in herself is inspiring, not many performers could go up on stage by themselves, without any instruments and still captivate an audience. Despite only playing a very brief 40 minute set, The Blow delivered a memorable experience for everyone that was there and provided me with my first positive experience at The Space.
Photos by Simone Gutkin