Monday, March 12, 2007

They Are The Pipettes

concert: The Pipettes (as part of Canadian Music Week) @ Rivoli(Toronto, Ontario), March 10, 2007

Rose and Becki of The Pipettes @ Rivoli: photo by Michael Ligon

I was one of the lucky ones to catch The Pipettes(as part of Canadian Music Week) at the Rivoli this past Saturday. However, rather than go into a regular review here's the text of my comments about the show I posted on a couple of websites:

What I posted on Stille Post after coming back from The Pipettes show on Saturday night:
Just came back from the show at the Rivoli. I left right after The Pipettes' set because I was gonna check out a couple more bands down the street at Kathedral(only to find out once I got to Kathedral that the headliner cancelled - I didn't end up going back to the Rivoli).

First of all the 12:30 am set time for the Pipettes was more like after 1 am. I got to the Rivoli about a quarter after midnight only to have to wait in a TICKETHOLDER lineup for 45 minutes. Someone said that the people inside prior to midnight had to be cleared out before ticketholders for The Pipettes would be let in. I was about 3/4 of a way back in the line and by the time I got inside and to the ticket person, the door guy had to cut off the line because there was suppose to only be 100 people inside the back room(including staff). He said something about he was only following orders and that even people who'd bought tickets MIGHT NOT get in because of the 100 person capacity rule and would likely be refunded their money. At that point, I almost didn't care about getting in but fortunately I overheard the door guy being told that they could let another 20 people in, and well long story short, I got in. Funny, once I got in and seeing most people crowded to the front of the stage(and people along the sides of the room), the room seemed only half full. Which makes me wonder why the 100 person capacity was established. And the show itself: it had it's moments, the girls were pretty(the brunette was cute and she played keyboards!), "Pull Shapes" was great, the girls dance moves were fun....but one thing I didn't bowl me over as much as I thought it would.

What I wrote over at BlogTO in response to Beth's review of the show:
It was a great, fun show although I came out of the show not liking their music as much as I thought I would. I really like the song Pull Shapes but I'm probably in the minority here but I think I prefer them on record more than live. I'd agree that part of the live act was too cute/over the top for me but musically they put a decent spin on the girl group genre. Musically, they didn't stray that far from a genuine girl group sound. Their revisionist spin on the genre is far more subtle(maybe in the lyrics perhaps ie the riot grrrl punk & feminist ideals you mention) in my opinion.

To add to that last thought, I'd been listening to The Aislers Set on my mp3 player all that night before the show. If ever there was a band who melded riot grrrl punk aesthetic/ideals with
lovely girl group pop melodies in a totally unique and fresh way it was/is The Aislers Set. The Pipettes take a far more conventional approach to girl group music in my opinion akin to say the song "They Don't Know" by Tracey Ullman. Pristine pop melodies yes, and I've always appreciated the girl group genre, from The Supremes to The Ronettes. In a live setting, The Pipettes put on a great dance party but I honestly don't know how often I could listen to The Pipettes' sugary sweetness(the melodies at least - I am aware of some of their lyrics) without it leaving a bad taste. I am hopeful though that The Pipettes have a life after their debut album "We Are The Pipettes" given what Rose said during an interview over at Cokemachineglow about what's in the band's future:
There will definitely have to be musical development – we don’t want to end up, like some other bands, as a horrible pastiche of ourselves. Definitely not. This album, and this style will only act as a foundation… we might try different sounds, production or even re-evaluating all of our roles in the band.

Check out my three photos from the show.

YouTube: The Pipettes - Pull Shapes (music video)
YouTube: The Pipettes - Judy (music video)
YouTube: The Aislers Set - Hit The Snow (live at Williamsburg Publik House - Brooklyn
Mar 29 2003)

YouTube: Tracey Ullman - They Don't Know (music video)
YouTube: The Supremes - Baby Love (television appearance)
YouTube: The Ronettes - Be My Baby (television appearance)

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