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Friday, July 07, 2006

The Hollywood Bowl, June 7th, 2006


OK, so maybe not the traditional way to look at this band's title, but I did always find it intriguing that their name is 2 very distinct Disney characters...and two of my favorite. Who doesn't love Sebastian, the little crab? But more importantly, Beauty and the Beast was like this epic amazing animated movie. Then Paramount releases Anastasia, and we're supposed to give a shit.

Have you ever noticed how Paramount releases animated movies (or computerized movies this day and age) right after Disney does? They are awful. I feel like they aren't even trying. Honestly. Chances are its because theya aren't, but hell, who knows.

Anyway, a good friend of mine offered me a ticket to this show this monday and I was in shock. Never did I think I would get to see Belle and Sebastian, much less with the Shins, but the most shocking of all: with the Los Angeles Philaharmonic Orchestra behind them.

Like two in the poot one in the shoot SHOCK ME baby. The show was off the hook. Ok, we all but misses the Shins set. But we needed beer, and quite frankly, it made Belle and Sebastian all the better.

The most amazing thing to me however, wasn't the music. It was the ability of 30,000 people to come in to a show, take a seat, and just sit back and listen to a show. I was in awe. I looked around several times to make sure I wasn't dreaming, but it was in fact real.

People were sitting down, enjoying the show, as if it was something they do all the time. And in a city like Los Angeles, well...sorry for not giving it's citizens credit, but I didn't think people had the capacity to just sit back and hang out. Turns out not only do they have that ability, but they are damn good at it as well.

The show's highlights included their amazing lead singer captivating the audience, blending a sort of Bobby Darin charisma with a full orchestra. It amazed me they weren't more freaked out, seeing as this was the biggest show they've ever played (literally) and they were smaller than their 'backing band.'

Besides identifiable tunes like "Cuckoo," "Dear Catastrophe Waitress," and "The Boy With the Arab Strap," they also managed to play a lot of songs I've never heard before. Keep in mind that before this show, I had only heard 2 of thier albums: Tigermilk and Dear Catastrophe Waitress. I loved both of them, but its only now I truly appreciate what they do.

The other thing I noticed was that since these guys are Scotish, their music reflects that at times. Does anyone ever listen to music from that part of the world? Even the rockers have a distinct sound there. Sure Franz Ferdinand was heavily influenced by the post-punk era sound, but indie music from that region seems to have a distinctly european sound. I don't know quite how to place it, but it's really unique. Like going to see Calexico crossed with David Byrne. Does that help? Like seeing James crossed with the beatles white album. Like seeing the arcade fire crossed with the smiths.

All in all, the show blew me away and I cannot wait for my next chance to see them live. Just thought I would share, seeing as this was a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Enjoy your weekend.

Next concert: Death Cab For Cutie, August 13, the Greek Theatre, Los Angeles

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