There was definitely a hint of Vaudeville in the Workman’s Club on Sunday night (14-07-13) as Music Tapes took the stage. Julian Koster (previously of Neutral Milk Hotel) seems to play with a smile on his face and has more than a few tricks up his sleeve, which are brought out at various stages throughout the evening. He told a variety of far-fetched tales, such as a man who can influence the mood in a room by altering its rhythm through breathing and a variety of other tiny sounds that change the flow and disposition of all those in the vicinity. These stories of his youth and experience form the introduction to the songs, which are played on a wild variety of instruments. The three-piece on the night worked through banjos (strummed and bowed), French horns, trumpets, keyboards, saws, drums and sleigh bells, all played with skill and dexterity.
There were also some games and tricks, including a singing television, an automated keyboard player, a human record player and also a real kids party game, which involved the full audience. It’s amazing how simple games and audience participation can make the event so much more immediate than the standard gig, with band and audience observing their typical roles. This band had no problem breaking the third wall, and interacting with the audience to great effect. They made a lot of friends on this evening in Dublin, and I’d expect to see them return and play to larger audiences in the future, on the basis of word of mouth and quality of music.
Crayonsmith played support on the night, and brought some good news in the form of a new album on the horizon. I’ve enjoyed them any time I’ve seen them play live, and they are one of the most underrated bands playing in Dublin at the moment. Hopefully this album will push them into the public consciousness, as they well deserve.
Muisc Tapes – Imaginary Tour