Violent Femmes - Electric Lady Studios - Gigs - Reviews - Soundblab

Violent Femmes - Electric Lady Studios

by Kevin Orton Rating:10 Release Date:2013-04-21

The famed Electric Lady Studios was host for an intimate, one of a kind Violent Femmes show for WFUV radio. The Femmes have just released, We Can Do Anything, their first studio album in 10 years. And it's great. Full of vim and vinegar. For a band that has seen some ups and downs over its 35 years its no mean feat. 

Frontman Gordon Gano was clearly in a good mood. As was multi-instrumentalist Brian Ritchie. Drummer Victor DeLorenzo was nowhere to be found. In his place was a round charcoal grill, which would be mercilessly beaten like a snare with brushes by a gentleman I'm sadly unable to identify.

Full confession, I've seen the Femmes many times. I've even opened for them. In fact, Gordon is actually longstanding friend of mine. The gig was invite only. Recorded live for a radio show. I'm sure if one checks out WFUV's website the show can be streamed in its entirety. Which is one reason why I'm writing this "review". Which you know at this point, is going to be a good one.

That said, it was an unsually amazing show.

The Femmes don't do set lists. Neither they or the audience knows what they're going to get. They started with an obscure favorite of mine, 'Breaking Up'. Vocally, Gano was in fine form. Full of good humor. As always Ritchie pulls out the stops. No ' Blister In the Sun' but they did do 'Country Death Song' with Hallowed Ground's  Tony Trishka on banjo. They also did a rousing version of 'Jesus Walking on the Water' from the same album. From their seminal first album they dusted off 'Prove My Love' and the ever popular 'Add It Up'. We've all heard 'Blister In the Sun' a million times, so they didn't bother. This show was for connoisseurs.

They also weren't shy about hitting the new album and I must say, the songs really hold up among the oldies. 'Issues' proved to be a crowd pleaser. 'I Could Do Anything' was introduced as a "Children's Song" which I suppose it is but came off as more a cautionary tale for adults. A rousing number feauturing a charming character named Bongo who "always fights dragons, especially when I'm bored". Suffice to say they had everyone singing along, which is rare for new songs audiences are generally unfamiliar with.

If 'Memory' serves, they also played that one too.  

At one point during the show they were joined by Television's Billy Ficca making for an evening that was full of the surprises along with the familiar.  As I've said, I've seen the Femmes many times over the years, through their good times and bad, and they are truly in fighting form. By all means, do not miss the chance to see them in a city near you. 

Comments (0)

There are no comments posted here yet
Related Articles