Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Paul and I went to see The National on Friday at the ABC in Glasgow. Last time i saw them was in Toronto, right before i was meant to move to Glasgow about a year and a half ago; Geekent kindly offered me a ticket to see them at the Horseshoe (thanks again, Graig, for introducing me)! And what a difference a year and a half makes! From the intimate venue of the Horseshoe to this:

Total stadium rock! It was packed!

Since Paul and I were squashed towards the back of the venue, I got to thinking about the band. Don't get me wrong - I like them (which is a lot more than Paul can say) - but it seems to me that the lead singer, Matt Berninger, has "borrowed" some of Gord Downie's infamous dance moves - i.e. contorting his body while shrieking/singing lyrics.

Gord Downie - for those that aren't Canadian - is the lead singer of the quintessential Canadian band, The Tragically Hip. For a long time, and perhaps still, The Hip weren't considered very cool and as such, many hipsters turned up their noses at them. Having grown up in the same area as the members of the band, well, you can't really escape them and sooner or later you're bound to fall under their spell (for me, it was seeing them at the Kingston Blues Festival in 1999 and totally rocking out on top of the Greek Village restaurant building).

Anyway, Matt Berninger from a distance reminded me of a younger (and hipster-approved) version of Gord Downie. Also, their violinist / keyboardist looks like camp councillor Neil from Wet Hot American Summer (a fucking HILARIOUS and brilliant film; don't listen to the mainstream critics):

In other Transatlantic news, apparently Fox Television are re-making one of my favourite British tv shows, Spaced.

Perhaps I'm a bit cynical but I don't think the remake will really translate. The original show was such a labour of love that it was evident in all the pop culture references it made throughout the series. It was hilarious, brilliant, and exact in all details and characters.

Anyway, I'm not sure if the dvds are available in Canada (there are two seasons), but it's totally worth the hunt. Watch it before Fox manages to vivisect it!


Anonymous said...

Why didn't Paul like them?

Also I'm not sure Berninger is borrowing Downie's moves, because he isn't too much different than Michael Stipe in the moves department, who himself isn't so different from Ian Curtis' stage schtick...

And an American "Spaced" would rot. (It recently was broadcast on Showcase in canada, but I've had imported DVDs for years)

Jennifer said...

Not sure why Paul didn't like them: I guess because he is Glaswegian and prefers something with a drum machine? I think he said they were too "low key". I really like them though.

I guess I thought Berninger looked like Downie 'cause uhh, we were waaaay at the back of the stadium and they all looked liek tiny wee figurines.

Oh my god, don't you love Spaced? How did it go over on Showcase?! Can you imagine a remake on Fox!?

Anonymous said...

To tell you the truth, I don't know anyone who watched all 14 episodes on Showcase. I know people who WANTED to watch it, and some who caught the odd episode, but nobody who watched the whole thing. I'm amazed that despite the popularity of Shawn of the Dead and Hot Fuzz here, people still don't know about Spaced... and so nobody paid much attention it would appear.

I think Tires is awesome.