July Talk :: The Echo
Saturday, July 6, 2015
Saturday night in Los Angeles, well, it usually does not start quite so early, but July Talk had a 7:30 pm set time and though this is usually the time that most of us Angelenos would be in “what to wear” contemplation sage, many of us had gathered all ready and willing within the small confines of The Echo anyway because, well, we figured July Talk was worth it (spoiler alert: THEY WERE). The energy in the room was palpable and buzzing with anticipation, and the room inside The Echo itself so dark that we all could collectively forget the sun was still big and bright in the early June sky outside.
We are big fans of July Talk here at lyriquediscorde.com and I was so excited to finally see them play live – it had been a long time coming – that I didn’t mind at all that it was early, all I wanted was to see them come out and play.
When the band took the stage they took the room, too. Kinetic energy that was explosive and completely engaging, there was not a single body left standing still. One part punk rock, one part rockabilly, one part rock opera, and one part something so completely undefinable that the overused saying “you had to be there” is the honest truth. Love and hate, passion, fall in love and fall apart, and the age old battle of the sexes seemed to be played out on stage, while both Peter Dreimanis and Leah Fay grabbed hold of our hearts and souls and rocked us out completely. Guitarist Ian Docherty, bassist Josh Warburton and drummer Danny Miles helped us out, too, aiding in the shaking and rattling, as we all lost ourselves completely together. It’s been a long time since I’ve been so swept up by a live show, and left shattered when it was all over, wishing that I could hit the rewind button and experience it all over again.
I’ve sat here trying to string together the highlights of the show, but honestly I keep coming back to all of it. From Peter and Leah graciously thanking us for showing up early, inviting us to pretend it was later and getting crazy with them, to Leah lying across the audience having us scream with her, to the all-crowd sing-a-long throughout Guns and Ammunition (we had the woo-hoo-hoo parts, that we were requested – loudly – to sing LOUDER).
I loved hearing the new songs, and was taken completely over with Paper Girl and Gentleman. Oh, and there was no forgetting when Leah was given a spray bottle of faux blood from a fan which she proceeded to decorate Peter’s chest with, some of the more than wiling crowd, and the inside of her thighs, in which she proudly announced “guess I’m not pregnant” to us all, channeling all the great 90’s riot grrrls.
Peter’s performance, and vocals, reminded me of Andrew Eldritch of Sisters of Mercy, Nick Cave, Joe Strummer, Tom Waits and Johnny Cash. Leah’s stage presence brought to mine Karen O, Brody Dalle, St. Vincent and Debbie Harry. All these comparisons though do not say nearly enough. They are understatements and only paint a small portion of the picture of what it’s like to experience this band in person. Again, I can’t help but say, you need to be there and see it for yourself.
The diametrically opposed sounds of the two, Peter’s whiskey soaked, gravelly voice toying with Leah’s sugar sticky sweet sound plays right into the dynamics played out between them. Peter sang on his knees in-between Leah’s legs at one point, Leah stuck her fingers and her microphone into his open mouth the next. She leaped onto his back, threw her shoes at him, and pushed him around the stage, as he ran his fingers through her hair, fell into her, begged and pleaded, then repelled himself away. They ripped at each other and pawed and played with one another, Leah even blindfolded Peter for an entire song. The two gave us a battle of the sexes and a true love sizzles and burns drama that was hot as hell to be a part of.
That said, all the dramatics never took away from the music though, and like the punk shows of the past, the energy took over every time. pushing us closer and closer to the stage, and to the music itself. We were all part of the show, and we would all be missing it when the show was over.
The performance was raw and real, energetic and spontaneous, and the band itself were genuine and gracious to the fans. I cannot recommend enough to go see a live show if you can, and then come back here, to this post and tell me what you thought, once you’ve recovered your composure, that is. I mean it – I MEANT IT – you want to see this band play live.
Here’s July Talks’ remaining tour dates. Go to a show…I insist!
Thanks, July Talk, for giving my friends and I one of the best Saturday nights we’ve experienced in a long time. Come back to see us again soon!