Happy Christmas your arse, I pray God its our last.
I've just returned from a khord in Saint John, stinking of sweat and beer. I hate this city. But the show!
Well, there are definite cons. I saw the Tom Fun Orchestra at a khord tonight, which is this little bar uptown. Cute place, but I'm convinced it's not insulated. I'm told it used to be the cop bar, or something. The Call Box, it was called in those days. This is not the matter. The show was meant to start at 11, so I got there early as I usually do, at about quarter to 11, and met up with some friends. We sat. And waited. And waited. And waited. And then the band got up and did a sound check. And we waited. And waited. And waited. Eventually Carmen got on stage at about midnight, and started playing her set. Well, you know how I feel about Carmen's music from the last blog about them: it turns out that I really was just unintrigued by her music. I enjoy her voice very much, I'm not saying I don't like her. I just... her band doesn't interest me. So I drank. And caught up with people I haven't seen in months or in years. It wasn't an altogether bad time, I just didn't enjoy the music.
But! But! Once Ian and the boys got on stage and kicked in to Heart Attack in an Old Motel, my night got better. I sang my lungs out (and after Last of the Curious Thieves, can barely speak), and Ian, as usual, was the perfect showman, talking about nothing in particular and everything at once. The crowd, though it has convinced me that Saint John crowds don't know how to clap along to music, was wonderful, dancing and jumping and though they didn't seem to know all the words they got so into the music, beautifully and wonderfully. I simply had so much fun, and Carmen's vocals on the songs I'm so used to are growing on me. Even on Watchmaker, I have to say, I really enjoyed her.
It was, of course, a Christmas concert, and some of my highlights were the Christmas tunes. Carmen and her band did a cover of Sufjan Stevens' That Was The Worst Christmas Ever, but as they tend to do, failed to hold my attention. (I'm sorry if ever you read this, Carmen; I love you in Tom Fun but there's just something lacking about the other. I'll still buy your record though when it comes out.) The Tom Fun Orchestra, though, did their own Christmas tune, which is available for download below, and, in one of the most perfect concert-going moments of my life, covered The Pogues' Fairytale of New York. Now, this could be just me, as that tune is my favourite Christmas song of all time, but Ian and Carmen singing Shane and Kirsty's parts is probably the best rendition of it you'll get since Kirsty kicked it. It was a gorgeous moment in my concert-going life, up there with Sarah Harmer doing How Deep In The Valley fully acoustic in this lovely old theatre and Laura Barrett's Sackville kitchen concert with sparklers.
They played with the energy you'll be used to if ever you've seen them, and Ian was very much Ian. I could swear that I heard him shouting "TOM FUN!" and heading for the bathroom at about eleven o'clock. They're among my favourite bands to see live, and I'm sure one of the shows will make my top 5 of the year. Keep your eyes peeled for that post!
Anyway, have a happy Christmas. I'm going to get some sleep.
PS: I just realised I said I'd reveal what made my belt so awesome. It was an NES controller holding up my favourite cords.