This Is the End
Not all EndFest acts were subject to such contentious behavior, though. Muse blew out everyone's eardrums with an awesome set of melodic pop symphonies and Franz Ferdinand gave it up for the Violent Femmes before them, as Franz frontman Alex Kapranos admitted his previous band covered two Femmes songs in their time. X kept the older kids happy, and John Doe became the hardest working band member at EndFest when he also played a solo show in Seattle that same night and came on stage with Pearl Jam during their No Vote Left Behind show at the Showbox. (All that hard work couldn't keep Doe from getting hassled by White River bouncers, though, who refused to allow him to watch the Yeah Yeah Yeahs from the general admission area without a wristband; he had to cop a view from backstage.)
Metric gave their tepid dance-punk recordings a leggy kick in the rear live. Frontwoman Emily Haines paraded across the stage, banging on a keyboard and charming the pants off the early showgoers by bouncing the band's black-coated new wave to life. After announcing, "This is where everyone I work with gets scared because they don't know what I'll do next," Haines showed the only fear she could possibly stir up was that she might show the world the prize barely hidden under that short white skirt of hers. Otherwise her cracking speech and giggly talk were as safe as that of Yeah Yeah Yeahs frontwoman Karen O--an interesting similarity since members of Metric once shared an apartment with members of that band, according to Pitchfork.
The Yeah Yeah Yeahs were definitely my highlight of the long day at the amphitheatre--which, incidentally, smelled of pungent cow shit once the sun set thanks to the surrounding farmland. Nasty. Dressed in a form-fitting dress, red tights, and sparkling blue converse, O and her crew bounded through a lot of new material (which means there's another great album on the way). She also performed acrobatics of the body and mouth, bending all over the stage and deep-throating the mic--giving the impression that her always oddball theatrics haven't changed a bit. O and guitarist Nick Zinner were also spotted around Seattle over the weekend, spending time at the Cha Cha, as well as at the Pearl Jam and Mudhoney shows.
Also on the festival circuit, Modest Mouse have been invited to curate this year's All Tomorrow's Parties. The concert will go down November 6 and 7 at the Queen Mary in Long Beach, California, with Lou Reed, Love as Laughter, Wolf Parade, the Shins, the Walkmen, and others already confirmed. More on that one later.
Seven-inch of the week: The Cripples and New Luck Toy teamed up for a recent split single on Dirtnap. The Cripples give "Deep Throat" a noisy, keytar-fried pop coating and their song "Hospital" is a dark-wave spy soundtrack caught in a wind tunnel of effects. On the flipside, NLT's "Wedding Dress" and "Timothy of Today" knock garagey new wave on the noggin. It's a tag-team effort worth joining forces with.