|Dee Dee from Dum Dum Girls 10/20/14|
As anticipated yesterday, I hit last night's Dum Dum Girls show at Waiting Room. This was my third time checking out DDG, and my first with them as a headliner.
I wanted to get to the show a little earlier than normal because I wanted to try and get some of my records signed by Dee Dee. Fortunately, she was behind the merch booth chatting with fans, and I got her to sign my LP of Too True. In addition, I bought a 7" that I didn't have and had her sign that, too. We chatted briefly about her other band, Haunted Hearts, and about her husband's band, Crocodiles. I was hoping to get her to commit to coming to Omaha with a double bill of Dum Dum Girls and Crocodiles. I guess she'll take it under advisement. Dee Dee was very nice, but it was hard to have a real conversation with the loud music of the openers, and with her being inundated with autograph requests. Oh well, the life of a rock star!
There were two openers last night: Yes You Are and Ex Cops. YYA features a former member of Tilly and the Wall, so many old school Omaha scenesters were in attendance. To me, YYA sounded like a modern take on Linda Ronstadt. I don't mean that to sound negative, that's just my initial impression. Next up was Ex Cops, who were running very late and had a myriad of technical issues. I spent most of their set in the back and couldn't hear much. Asking around, I got mixed reviews as to the quality of their set.
Dum Dum Girls hit the stage sometime around 11 and proceeded to play the entire Too True album from start to finish. As a rule, I don't like it when bands play their entire new album in concert. If I wanted to listen to the record in order, I'd just stay home and play it, you know?
I could have handled the whole new album thing better if the band played with a little more...spunk. Or energy. Or enthusiasm. Something.
For all practical purposes, Dee Dee is the band. She writes the songs, she sings the songs, and she decides who plays on the albums. For the most part, the rest of the "band" has been consistent over the last few years, but last night there was a change. Rather than sing and play guitar, Dee Dee gave up the guitar and just sang. She brought in a new guitar player to play her parts. I don't know if that was the problem or not, but last night, the band played quite lifelessly.
This is a band that I love, performing an album that I love, and yet I was bored. Every band has off nights, and this seemed like one to me. Everyone played their parts, but they didn't seem to be playing together. Dee Dee's voice sounded great, but she was being backed poorly last night. I ended up leaving early! WTF.
The last two times I saw Dum Dum Girls they were amazing live. Last night, however, they were just off. Maybe I am being too nit-picky, perhaps; because a listener of my radio show emailed from the concert thanking me for turning him on to this band and saying how much he loved the show. I'm glad he had a good time, but I was a little disappointed.