Deep Dark United with Wet Dreams , Final Fantasy and Frank FB_A at the Tranzac, September 12. Tickets: $5. Attendance: 40. Rating: NNN Rating: NNNNN
Although band names like Wet Dreams and Final Fantasy augured for a salacious event, Deep Dark United 's afternoon show at the Tranzac Club was anything but.
It was the second performance of a weekend celebrating the release of Ancient, their new CD on local recording club Blocks. Saturday night's performance had apparently sparked enough drunkenness that most in the room the next day were drinking club soda or juice. The number of young folks in attendance also prevented drunken spectacles.
The show definitely had a hungover feel. While the ads said the doors would open by noon, when I arrived at 12:30 pm the Australian club held only lonely Tranzac employees, and the show got under way at around 2 - a surprise for a Blocks-aided event, as they've made a point of holding some early-ass shows.
The first act was shoddy but entertaining quartet Frank FB_A , who are apparently in their last days due to co-vocalist Chris 's departure to study film in New York, leaving his 13-year-old mic-sharing brother Frank in the lurch. They brought a podium onstage and covered Adam Green's Jessica and Daniel Johnston and Jad Fair's I Did Acid With Caroline with clumsy charm.
Then came one-man band Wet Dreams , whose guitar-based alternative rock over pre-recorded tracks went pretty much over my head. But it was he who designed the garbage can lids decorated with multicoloured lights that were onstage all afternoon. The glow they gave off provided a constant fun thing to focus on whenever I got sick of watching the humans perform. Also, his set was so short you couldn't get too aggravated by his music.
Another one-man act, Owen Pallett 's Final Fantasy , followed. The member of Les Mouches and Hidden Cameras allowed that he was nervous and had a cold. This didn't prevent him from keeping the rapt, almost too respectful crowd happy by showcasing new songs with sweet violin melodies, delay-created orchestration and often pretty vocals, although he would occasionally come out of nowhere in a song with loud yelling or noisy instrumentation.
Headliners Deep Dark United wound up being five grown folk, the youngest being DDU frontman Alex Lukashevsky 's son Charlie , whose babyish presence made the band seem a lot less dark than their name suggested. He did not impede their shambling style, although he might be the one who muted it - their set definitely wasn't a wildly rocking loudfest. This is a band that's definitely used to changing things up, and they seemed comfortable onstage.
Lukashevsky's showy voice and oddly pleasing songs were greatly aided by Ryan Driver 's work on the drums and Brodie West 's bleating saxophone, and, of course, by Charlie, who was handed a mic early in the set but only began to really rock out during a melodramatic DDU tune called Dead Souls.
Babies are cute.