Saturday, March 26, 2011

Review: Nerds and Music at the Aladdin

The Nerds and Music show at the Aladdin was the show I was waiting for since I missed the last W00Tstock. The Jonathan Coulton show wasn't exactly bad, but it didn't scratch the itch I was feeling. I was hoping that this show would be as fun as past shows, and I was not left forlorn. Some interesting notes about the audience before I talk about the show itself. First, this audience skewed much older than the JoCo concert, like seriously so; there were a number of blue-haired old ladies at this show, and I have no idea why. There were also almost no children present, which was good, because the show got blue in the first fifteen seconds and stayed that way. Second, there were no talkers in the balcony this time, thank the gods. There was a bar, though, which I took advantage on a couple of occasions. And the balcony seats are much closer to the bathrooms, which I had to visit a depressing number of times.

I really like the Aladdin, and have almost no complaints about it, but the one quibble I have is the Merch Booth location. I understand why it's right next to the door, but it also makes getting out (or getting Merch) incredibly difficult at the end of the show. I have no idea where else to put it, though.

The opening act (all of three songs!) was The Doubleclicks, which is a local folk-nerd duo that I recently discovered. I'm unabashedly a fan, and while I wish they had been given more time, they knew their audience and picked three excellent songs. They were, of course, a big hit and everyone loved them which is to be expected, because they are enormously lovable. I was also hoping for more banter, but given they were short on time and justifiably visibly terrified, they did a great job and I hope to see them more often.

Next was Mike Phirman, standup comedian and musician whom I've seen before, and who is also half of Hard and Phirm, the West-Coast version of Paul and Storm. I've said a number of positive things about his set, and I still feel that it's quite strong, so I'll simply say that I wish he would've gotten more time, as well. He's a polished and professional standup comedian, and it shows in his set (though, personally, I'd like to see a little more variety in the jokes, but that's a personal bias rather than a comment to his competence). His music is also excellent.

After Mike was Hank Green, who is apparently internet-famous. My grandfather told me that if I couldn't say something nice, shut up and move on.

Moving on, the headliners of the night were, of course, Paul and Storm. They set the tone for the show all the way through, and did the usual excellent job of being brilliant, funny, touching, and riotous by turns, with the standard sprinkling of "x is my y cover band" jokes and some new music which I adored. They opened, as usual, with Opening Band, and finished, as is normal, with the Captain's Wife's Lament. I should point out: Longest. Lament. Evarrrrrr. The experience of listening to Paul and Storm on CD doesn't compare to a live P&S show (which is, amusingly, exactly the opposite feeling I have for most bands including JoCo).

In the end, it was a really excellent evening overall, and I'd see most of these acts again, and be happy to pay for the experience.