Thursday, June 20, 2024 
--archival-captured-cinematronic-continuity error-daily report-datastream-depth of field--
--drama-44.1 khz-gramophone-inquisitive-needle drops-picture book-twinklepop--
Neumu = Art + Music + Words
Search Neumu:  


edited by michael goldbergcontact

The Frames Accept Your Love

Sydney, Australia — They start off shy. Like maybe it's too easy for them and they need to make a deeper path into the night, because people here love them too much already. So it's a soft beginning as singer Glen Hansard hushes himself into things and laughs a little at his own dramatics, as if not to be too precious. All the while the loudest thing you can hear in the room is not his voice or his wildly noble band, but these other pools of sound spreading out over a heroes' welcome so rowdy it's as if the whole night is going to be a fight between noise and silence, pools and pools everywhere rippling with the sound of "shoooosh," "shooooooooooooosh," "shoooooooooooosh...."

Can love kill love? The audience here at the Metro Theater on November 16 is more than capable of it. They sing every word, cheer every gesture, swamp the band in worship. It feels wrong, a slobbering embrace, peculiarly drunken and Irish and sentimental, bucketed in something beyond the music, a need to laugh and sing so loud it's like some grotesque, out-of-touch, even violent weeping towards mindlessness. Caught inside it, I begin to hate the crowd, and yet I know the feeling, the whole Waltzing Matilda Ned Fucking Kelly fly-your-tattered-flag mood of it.

Introduced to The Frames by their Steve Albini-produced 2001 album, For the Birds, I'd expected a folky Tindersticks with momentary metallic surges out of the quiet, a bunch of gloomy recluses locked into tender atmospheres and odd storms. Instead this is like a Violent Femmes show. Worse still, a foreshadowing of what a Frames reunion tour might be like in 20 years' time if this audience manages to devour this great, great band and turn them into what's expected.

It's just then that The Frames decide to play a new song called "Keepsake." When they declare they still possess their music and something mysterious within it that remains purely their own. That in this one moment we might stop to watch and listen and go searching with them instead of swilling everything down and punching our fist in the air. That now, now it's time to think and feel in deeper ways.

This pause into the unknown, this "Let's hold on for a few minutes," signals the band really stepping up to the mark. Unlike me though, they don't lash out at the love before them, they accept it and take it on to other places. And show what an experience they really are. Songs burst their shapes into improvisations, citing in sudden rushes of energy the ecstasy of Van Morrison as Glen Hansard exclaims spiraling mantras of "your radio your radio your radio" or suddenly rips into Johnny's Cash's "Ring of Fire": part pop shamanism, part Irish cowboy rumble, plenty of reckless fun.

Hansard is the undeniable star of the occasion: loose and happy rather than tortured, a shenanigan artist with some quirky origami hand moves darting their way into a few songs, as well as a deep poetic presence that can't be denied. It's confronting to see how enamored he is of the love I was hating, the way he understands and appreciates the crowd without letting them idolatrize the music. That he is a rare, red-haired Irish bird: comic, ready to party, serious when it matters, hot with his own talent.

So it is that The Frames don't even come close to drowning in the love I saw threatening them — they surf on it, transforming worship into communion, currents of depression into joy, everything moving them and us towards freedom in the music. You can hear Yeats and Synge in this lyrically romantic sound too, a likely lad dreaming straight out of Irish literature, as well as some unbelievably intense musical dynamics that put The Frames in the fine company of artists like the Dirty Three, Wild Oldham and The Necks among others.

It's like the story Hansard tells about driving by a graveyard just before Christmas and deciding to buy his love a plot. He took her there on Christmas Day to see his surprise and, he says, highly amused, she was not at all impressed! There's hardly a dry eye in the house from laughter by the time he finishes this story and launches in to what became his other gift, the song "Lay Me Down": "In the hollowed ground by your side." A song about sneaking back into a graveyard at night after a funeral to be with the one you loved and lost. 'Tis a strange prettiness he masters for us.

Note: The Frames' excellent live album, Set List, which was released in other parts of the world last year, will see release in the U.S. on February 24 on the Anti label. — Mark Mordue [Friday, January 30, 2004]

Alejandro Escovedo's Joyous Rebirth

John Vanderslice Kicks Genre

Paul Duncan's Elusive Pop

Stephen Yerkey's Wandering Songs

French Kicks Complete 'Two Thousand'

Spazzy Romanticism: Love Story In Blood Red

Brain Surgeons NYC Rock The Big Questions

Jarboe's 'Men' Charts Turbulent Emotions

Delta 5's Edgy Post-Punk Resurrected

Blitzen Trapper Spiff Things Up

Minus Five: Booze, Betrayal, Bibles and Guns

New Compilation Spotlights Forgotten Folk Guitar Heroes

Chris Brokaw's Experiment In Pop

Old And New With Death Vessel

Silver Jews: Salvation And Redemption

Jana Hunter's Beautiful Doom

Vashti Bunyan Finds Her Voice Again

Nick Castro's Turkish Folk Delight

Katrina Hits New Orleans Musicians Hard

Paula Frazer's Eerie Beauty

The National Find Emotional Balance

Death Cab For Cutie's New Album, Tour

Heavy Trash's Rockabilly Rampage

Help The Wrens Get Their Albums Released!

Devendra Banhart, Andy Cabic Launch Label

Lydia Lunch's Noir Seductions

Bosque Brown's The Real Deal

PDX Pop Now! Fest Announces Lineup

Sarah Dougher Starts Women-Focused Label

Jennifer Gentle's Joyful Psyche

Mountain Goat Darnielle Gets Autobiographical With 'Sunset Tree'

Mia Doi Todd's Beautiful Collaboration

Return of the Gang of Four

Martha Wainwright Finds Her Voice

Brian Jonestown Massacre's Acid Joyride

Solo Disc Due From Pixies' Frank Black

Heartless Bastards' Big-Hearted Rock

Mike Watt's Midlife Journey

The Black Swans Balance Old And New

Nicolai Dunger's Swedish Blues

The Insomniacs' Hard-Edged Pop

Yo La Tengo Collection Due

Juana Molina's 'Homemade' Sound

Beans Evolves

Earlimart's Songs Of Loss

Devendra Banhart's 'Mosquito Drawings'

Negativland Rerelease 'Helter Stupid'

Alina Simone Transforms The Ordinary

Sounds From Nature: Laura Veirs

Octet's Fractured Electric Pop

Sleater-Kinney Working With Lips Producer

The Cult Of Silkworm

The Evolution Of The Concretes

Devendra Banhart's Exuberant New Songs

Catching Up With The Incredible String Band

Gram Rabbit's Desert Visions

Three Indie-Rock Stars Unite As Maritime

Remembering Johnny Ramone

Jarboe's Many Voices

Phil Elvrum's Long Hard Winter

First U.S. Release For Vashti Bunyan Album

Incredible String Band To Tour U.S.

New Music From Lydia Lunch

Le Tigre Protest The Bush War Presidency

Joel RL Phelps: Bleak Songs Rock Hard

Time Tripping With Galaxie 500

Patti Smith Wants Bush Out!

Sharron Kraus: A New Kind Of Folk Music

The Fiery Furnaces' Psychedelic Theater

Harder, Heavier Burning Brides

Sonic Youth's Ongoing Experiment

The Dt's Do It Their Way

Poster Children Cover Political Rock

Rare Thelonious Monk Recordings Due

Uneasy Pop From dios

Beck, Lips, Waits Cover Daniel Johnston

Understanding Franz Ferdinand

The Truly Amazing Joanna Newsom

Mylab's Boundary-Crossing Experiments In Sound

Have You Heard Jolie Holland Whistle?

The 'Magical Realism' Of Vetiver

The Restless, Rootsy Songs Of Eszter Balint

The Sun Sets On The Blasters

Devendra Banhart To Tour U.S.

The East/West Fusion Sounds Of Macha

Destroyer Gets Mellow For Your Blues

TV On The Radio Get Political

Sonic Youth, Modest Mouse To Play Lollapalooza 2004

New Music From The Fall

Apocalyptic Sound From The Intelligence

Fast And Rude With The Casual Dots

'Rejoicing' With Devendra Banhart

New Album, Tour From The Polyphonic Spree

Shearwater Take Wing

Sleater-Kinney To Tour East/West Coasts

Resurrecting Rocket From The Tombs

Visqueen Want To Get A Riot Goin' On

Lloyd Cole Makes A Commotion

Funkstörung's 'Cut-Up' Theory

Waiting For Mirah's C'mon Miracle

Electrelane Find Their Voice

The Television Is Still On!

Experimental Sounds From Hannah Marcus

The Ponys Play With Rayguns

Ex-Mono Men Leader Returns With The Dt's

Mountain Goats' Darnielle Adopts A More Hi-Fi Sound

Sun Kil Moon To Tour U.S., Europe

Nothin' But The Truth From The Von Bondies

Sultans Survive 'Shipwreck'

Sebadoh Reunite For Spring Tour

Xiu Xiu's 'Reality' Rock

Meet The Patients

Beth Orton, M. Ward Make Sadness Taste Sweet

Oneida's Pathway To Ecstasy

Radiohead, Pixies, Dizzee Rascal To Play Coachella

Young People Tour Behind War Prayers

Pixies Tour Dates Announced

Ani DiFranco Tells It Like It Is

Deerhoof Back For 2004 With Milkman

McLusky Set To 'Bring On The Big Guitars' Again

Pixies Reunite For U.S., European Tours

American Music Club, Decemberists To Play NoisePop 2004

Damien Rice Set To Tour U.S.

The Frames Accept Your Love

Punk Rock's A-Frames To Re-Record Third Album

Finally! Mission Of Burma Record New Album

A Solo Detour For Ladybug Transistor's Sasha Bell

Return Of The Old 97's

Spending The Night With Damien Rice

Tindersticks Reissues Due This Spring

The Evolution Of 'A Silver Mt. Zion'

Neil Young Rocks Australia With 'Greendale'

Poster Children Back In Action

'The Great Cat Power Disaster Of 2003'

Chicks On Speed's Subversive Strategies

Oranger At A Crossroad

Peaches On Tour And In Control

Jawbreaker's Complete Dear You Sessions To Be Released

Belle & Sebastian + Trevor Horn = Sunny Pop Nirvana

Von Bondies' Pawn Shoppe Heart

Descendents Are Back!

Modest Mouse Touring; Album Due in 2004

London Suede Take A (Permanent?) Break

Saul Williams Wants You To Think For Yourself

The 'Zen' Sound Of Calexico

Elliott Smith Dead AT 34

Debut Due From Mark Kozelek's Sun Kil Moon

The Hunches: Music That'll 'Fucking Live Forever'

Vic Chesnutt Speaks His Mind

90 Day Men Cancel Tour

Keith Jarrett, Cecil Taylor Highlight SF Jazz Festival

For My Morning Jacket, It's The Music That Matters

EP Due From The Polyphonic Spree

Bright Eyes, Neva Dinova Collaborate On EP

The Rise & Fall & Rise Of Ben Lee

Catching Up With Cheerfully Defiant Tricky

Hanging Around With The Polyphonic Spree

Sophomore Album Due From The Shins

Noise Rock From Iceland's Singapore Sling

Death Cab To Tour U.S.

Rufus Wainwright's Want One Is 'Family Affair'

Death Cab's Transatlanticism On The Way

Heartfelt Rock From Sweden's Last Days Of April

The Minus 5 Get Down With Wilco

Tywanna Jo Baskette's Southern-Gothic Rock

Xiu Xiu's Stewart Takes On 'Gay-bashing'

Portishead Producer Resurfaces Behind New Diva

Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Wire, Primal Scream On Buddyhead Comp

Yeah Yeah Yeahs To Tour West Coast

Sonic Youth, Erase Errata Kick Off 'Buddy Series'

The Locust Are One Scary Band

Damien Rice In The 'Here And Now'

Remembering Karp's Scott Jernigan

ATP-NY Postponed 'Til At Least 2004

The Soul Of Chris Lee

Gits' Frenching The Bully To See Re-Release

Stephen Malkmus Is In Control

Superchunk To Release Rarities Set; Teenage Girls To Swoon As A Result

Summer Touring For The Gossip

Babbling On About Deerhoof

Irish Song Poet Damien Rice's O Released In U.S.

Chatting With ATP's Barry Hogan

Former Digable Planets Frontman Surfaces With Cherrywine

ATP L.A. Festival Rescheduled For Fall

Freakwater's Janet Bean Takes A Solo Turn

Lee's 'Cool Rock'

Strokes, Yeah Yeah Yeahs Highlight YES NEW YORK

Mark Romanek's 'Hurt' Revives Johnny Cash's Career

The Rapture's Post-Punk, Post-Dance Sound

R.E.M., Wilco, Modest Mouse Highlight Bumbershoot Fest

Set Fires To Flames' Sleep-Deprivation Sound

Southern Gothic Past Shadows Verbena's La Musica Negra

The Subtle Evolution Of Yo La Tengo

Spring Tour For Jolie Holland (Plus A Live Album)

Liz Phair Still Pushing The Limits

Gold Chains Wants You To Dance And Think

Young People's War Prayers On The Way

peruse archival

-snippetcontactsnippetcontributorssnippetvisionsnippethelpsnippetcopyrightsnippetlegalsnippetterms of usesnippetThis site is Copyright © 2003 Insider One LLC