Posted by: martinworster | November 6, 2008

139. THE LAST SHADOW PUPPETS

_dsc0049I admit I was a bit sceptical before checking out this gig at the Mayan Theatre on the edge of downtown Los Angeles (November 3rd). As a spin off group for Alex Turner (Arctic Monkeys) and Miles Kane (Rascals), The Puppets seemed like a weird, if alluring, side project. I’d heard some of their material on the radio in the UK and anything that is touched by new indie God Turner merits attention.

What I’d heard seemed a strange mix of indie, Scott Walker croonerism, Ennio Morricone spaghetti western noodling, dollops of surf rock, all backed by a large classical string section. It seemed a strange mix, possibly too post modern cool to really work through referencing these quirky historical musical niches. I was wrong. In a live setting it made total sense.

They looked the part in Beatles style suits with pre-indie tight trousers and shirts buttoned up to the top. The Beatle reference was further confounded when they covered ‘I want You (She’s So Heavy)’ from ‘Abbey Road’, made all the more authentic in Kane’s thick Scouse accent.

This was the last night of their US tour and Alex and Miles have really got the show polished. The two frontmen have a really good chemistry, helped by the fact their performing in front of a nearly 100% female string section. They covered David Bowie’s ‘In The Heat Of The Morning’ as well us cuts from their debut album ‘The Age Of The Understatement’.

My reservations over the gig were shattered. It was refreshing to hear music that isn’t all jangly indie guitars or the electro punk inspired schtick so popular at the moment. The Puppets had a real class and originality with their sound, room to breath  between the notes, proper singing and a classical string section.

I heard someone saying that the Arctic Monkeys were finished after tonights experience. I thought that was a bit harsh, the Arctics are the biggest thing post-Libertines to happen in indie shcmindie world. But the Puppets were something totally fresh and new – the rest of the Monkeys (and the Rascals) should be slightly worried.

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Responses

  1. muito bom este cd


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