Show Reveiw: Jaymay @ Bowery Ballroom 6.10.08

Opening the show at the Bowery Ballroom on Tuesday night was John McCauley of Deer Tick. Playing to a crowd that would have looked larger at any venue other than the Bowery, McCauley belted out his set with a raspy voice; the kind that many folk and blues singers are left with after too many cigarettes and too much whiskey. McCauley  seemed to squeeze out this rasp in an attempt to provide more than just the white-boy top-layer of soul that came out. His and every other artists’ mid-music musings that night were sincere attempts to make more intimate a space, which, given the Bowery’s lighting, ultimately felt as such.

Though few can truly bring through the essential details required of the truly talented artist-and-his-guitar, A.A. Bondy did so almost too well (possibly because he was the only artist who originated west of New Jersey). His voice was captivating in its sweetness, complimented by his moving, though simple lyrics and melodies.  In the eyes of this newcomer he could have captured the headlining spot, if not for the ever-growing popularity of Jaymay and the fact that this was her final performance in New York until the fall.

She began her set with ‘Song for Paul,’ a song like most of her others; beautiful and haunting. Next she played what fans seemed to show was one of the favorites, ‘Lonely Men Built Lonely Cities,’ in which she sang, “The burden of loving someone may be better than loving no one.”

It’s a great lyric, though an even greater line came in the next song, ‘Big Ben,’ which was, “They never knew the girl you loved to draw loved to draw pictures of you…undressed.” She sang it after reminding fans that many critics call it a break-up song, which it isn’t.

“It’s much worse than that,” she said.

Her set also included ‘Sea Green/See Blue’, and she finished with ‘Gray or Blue.’

Her appeal was particularly dynamic in both sound and emotion. She has a way of lulling her listeners in, only to surprise them with her own style of powerful and jarring moments. She also personalized the set by reminding the crowd that New York City has a special place in her heart.

Be sure to check her out if you live beyond this towering metropolis we call an apple!

-Ike

Jaymay, Live!

6/13/08 8:00pm @ B-Side – with Fink – Cleveland, OH
6/14/08 8:00pm @ Club Café – with Fink – Pittsburgh, PA
6/16/08 8:00pm @ Schuba’s – with Fink – Chicago, IL
6/18/08 8:00pm @ Troubadour – with Fink – Los Angeles, CA
6/19/08 8:00pm @ Café du Nord – with Fink – San Francisco, CA
6/20/08 8:00pm @ Doug Fir – with Fink – Portland, ME
6/21/08 8:00pm @ Tractor Tavern – with Fink – Seattle, WA

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