Clinic / Midnight Movies at Bimbos - 5/21/2004

Clinic
with Midnight Movies
Bimbos
5/21/2004

When I walked in I’m guessing Midnight Movies were halfway through their set; I’d heard mixed things about them, but wanted to get there with at least enough time to form my own opinion on the matter.  The result: they were great.  The best descriptor I can come up with, and one that kept popping into my head over and over while they played, was Blonde Redhead with Nico singing for them.  There was a lot of Sonic Youth-influenced guitar playing, and the singer was also the drummer, always a great feat.  She had a nice, deep voice, the sort of voice I always love on a woman.  The group was rounded out by a third member who played some guitar and a lot of keys/organ.  They’re playing again soon at Café du Nord and I’ll definitely try to see them again, and for a whole set this time.

Clinic lived up exactly to the expectations I had set for them – come on stage dressed in medical outfits, play their short bursts of brilliant songs, and leave, coming nowhere near an hour long set.  As I had seen them before, I knew this would be the case; but I wonder if anyone out there was disappointed by the short set?  Personally, I think their idea of how to approach live music is perfect, leave them wanting more and all that.  They played a bunch of their new material (I eagerly anticipate getting their new album) to start the show off, and then filled most of the second half with older tracks that everyone knew.  The new songs sound like they were taken from the same mold as the old ones, maybe a bit mellower here and there.  It still boggles my mind that they are as popular as they are, I’m assuming it’s because they have the “Radiohead stamp of approval” or something like that.  Because as rad as I think they are, they don’t really have a very accessible sound like you would think might appeal to a lot of people, the passive music audience that listens to whatever their radio tells them.  Either way, great to see Clinic, great to see them getting supported by so many fans, and I can’t wait to hear their great new album.  Great!


(Photo not mine, found randomly online.)

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