April Smith and the Great Debate - Pete's Candy Store, 10/02/08
Upon arrival at Pete's Candy Store last night just before April Smith's 9pm set, the front room was packed with people who had come for a group watch of the Vice Presidential debate between Joe Biden and Sarah Palin. You could feel the electricity in the room as the debate broadcast began. Located in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, Pete's has a very cool looking performance space, sort of like the inside of a train car, which was also packed for April Smith, performing with a small scale Great Picture Show; April on electric guitar and vocal, backed with upright bass and drums.
Listen to "Drop Dead Gorgeous" from the live EP.
Every so often loud cheering could be heard from the front room through the closed doors, either for something Biden said or, as April explained, someone winning at Palin bingo, April saying she'd play later while watching the debate on tivo. Here's a sample bingo card courtesy of Palinbingo.com.
The combination of the debate in one room and April in the other, made for a quite unique and enjoyable vibe. The reduced size Great Picture Show sounded great doing April's original songs including audience requests, even an audience vote ("no one loses in April's election"). April's between song humor was just as much fun as her songs.
Listen to "Wow & Flutter" from the live EP.
In addition to songs from her last CD, April also played some newer tunes from her recent live EP (both are available at CD Baby), her last song included a nice detour through Led Zep's "Whole Lotta Love". Between the two rooms, my vote would go to April for providing the better entertainment, but from the sound of it, everyone enjoyed their night at Pete's Candy Store.
Live from the Penthouse (2008)
April Smith and the Great Picture Show's website.
April Smith and the Great Picture Show's myspace.