Japandroids + The Coathangers: 7 October 2009 - The Barbary, Philadelphia

Dan Kober

Words and Pictures by Dan Kober

The Vancouver two-piece, Japandroids, did not put on much of a show in Philadelphia. The whole experience felt like being stuck in some sad version of Limp Bizkit’s “Break Stuff” video. But these guys were singing about French-kissing French girls and getting drunk in the basement, rather than breaking a human face. I’ll gladly take the former over the latter, but that’s not much of a compliment. It was also pretty upsetting to see these guys almost break down on a tour that does not seem to be going their way. I was one of the eight lonely guys in the so-called mosh pit trying my best to love it. In fact the show itself was an exercise in save-the-show CPR for one man in attendance. It only took one swell young George-Michael look-alike Starbucks barista dude up front to save the night. He single-handedly kept the band going with his ebullience. Whatta man, whatta man, whatta mighty good man...

Atlanta’s The Coathangers opened with a set of ya-ya sisterhood lady rock. They are sweet like the sweet grandma kisses they sing about. Furrealz. I think I caught the blonde, heavily tattooed, Coathanger mid-existential crisis somewhere in the middle of the set. I also caught their Joy Division “No Love Lost” tease. If I were to give this band any advice, I would tell them that it is not always a good idea to tour an inside joke. I wouldn’t mind running into these girls at the local School of Rock, teaching the kiddies to play some good ‘ole Joy Division. At least they didn’t play “Nestle In My Boobies.” That is all that really needs to be said.

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