Last night we attended a taping of two Live Wire Radio shows. The first show featured Kristin Hersh, one of my all time favorite musicians. I’ve seen her live many times but I still try to see her whenever she’s in town. She only played two songs but both featured her typical spirit and intensity. Unfortunately I don’t know the name of the first song she played but the second was “Your Dirty Answer.”
The second show featured Wesley Stace (formerly known as John Wesley Harding). Wes is always entertaining and even if you somehow hated his music his stories are told with flair and a disarming English accent. He discussed “children’s music” with the host and wondered if there really was such a thing. He read a passage from his new book, Wonderkid, and played a song which could have been a kids’ song or maybe wasn’t. At one point you could tell that he blew the lyrics but he sounded great as always.
The host, Luke Burbank, was witty and interesting. Sean McGrath and Laura Faye Smith were funny and provided a spark in between acts. Matt Fraction gave an interesting talk about his Hawkeye comic. His story of how Hawkeye came to have a dog was heartfelt and almost left Matt in tears.
I was less impressed with Albatross, Ryan Sollee’s latest band and an offshoot of the Builders and the Butchers. They basically sounded like a tuneless version of the Decemberists. The various parts did not make up a cohesive whole.
We had the best seats in the house, front row center, so I was able to take some unobstructed pictures of Kristin Hersh and Wesley Stace. Note the amp which was turned up to 11 during Albatross’ set.