Concert Review: St. Vincent takes The Doug Fir for a ride

by Guia Nocon on February 9, 2010

St. Vincent played a sold-out show Saturday the 6th to a crowd looking for a rowdy time and, oh boy, did they get it.  Wearing a little black dress and a big guitar, Annie Clark appeared to embody her cute, tiny voice, much more like a wilting flower than a rock-and-roll powerhouse.  But audiences were taken by surprise as soon as the lights went down and the band started playing.

Opening with “The Strangers” from her sophomore effort, Actor, she delivered the punch her records have promised.  St. Vincent’s modus operandi — starting out soft and ending with a bang — played out perfectly in her live show.  You’d never know how well she rocks her guitar until you see it live, and she never seems to break a sweat doing it.

There were big lights, big sounds, and even bigger theatrics.  The stage became awash with shifting rainbow colors and all of a sudden you felt like you were dreaming for the first time in Technicolor.  St. Vincent literally took up every space in the venue.  Her band was impeccable and the sound perfectly mixed.  Each and every player could be heard just enough for you to realize just how many layers and intricate details come alive in St. Vincent’s music.  The perfect example of this happened mid-show when she delivered a perfectly gritty rendition of the song “Marrow.”

There were times when her voice got lost and you had to strain to hear her, but it didn’t really take anything away from the show.  The music alone was enough to carry the entire production all the way through.  There was only one place the show fell short: St. Vincent running her mouth.  While it did get her into some trouble (by saying some inappropriate things at the under-age matinée show and mistaking Ice-T for Ice Cube), ultimately, it made her seem more accessible and, well, pretty funny.  Also, props to Annie for neglecting to play boring favorites “Now, Now” or “Marry Me.”  Enough of the palatable St. Vincent; that night the crowd wanted something nasty, brazen and kick-ass and Annie Clark delivered.

At times soft and yielding (her cute cover of Nico’s “These Days” and The Beatles’ “Dig a Pony”) and at other occasions intense and a bit grotesque (the awesomely scary “Your Lips Are Red”), St. Vincent proved she could do everything she promised on her two albums and quite a bit more.

Watch Annie play a cover of “Dig a Pony” by The Beatles from this show at The Doug Fir Lounge:

Lastly, while this review was written back in February of 2010, a quick Google search today dug up the light tech Jason Carroll’s website where he cites ME! Crazy…check it out below!

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