YOAV to do Betterby Erin Clark, images by Dylan Geldenhuys / 20.01.2010
On Saturday night I was down at Assembly to watch YOAV and the so and so’s. I didn’t drink a single beer until I got there, because I really wanted to experience the music. What a bad idea. This article should actually be very short. Opener- The Privates: listenable; João Orecchia- don’t bother and YOAV- boring. But I’m a sucker for punishment.
At last I finally understand how a band can be classified by multiple genres. With The Privates, after every few bars the feel changes; the drummer, bassist and guitarist take turns; creating a musical chairs of grooves, if you will. They were well versed in reggae, funk, ‘swing’ and metal-among others. This is by no means a good thing, because one isn’t always sure if these are their real influences or just a mash up of pleasant grooves.
None the less The Privates were by far the most together- in terms of performances. You can see they are well rehearsed. I imagine they play a lot of weddings.
I was deeply disturbed by the second act: João Orecchia. I’m not sure what this chap was trying to achieve. He had a coffee table of samplers and pedals, a guitar on his lap and a mike in his hand- he was the picture of a novice busker setting up for his debut on the boardwalk at the Waterfront. He further indulged himself with a trumpeter and drummer who I will not name. They did all the hard work of keeping water out of the boat; to no avail. João’s samples were sometimes out of time. They overpowered every other contribution on stage, even his voice and guitar, causing a thundering mess constantly pierced by long howls of feedback. I fashioned earplugs out of tissue, but they only slightly eased the torture.
My opinion might have been different if he was trying to switch us onto some Håkan Lidbo shit, but of course he wasn’t.
I’ll tell you this; YOAV got all the best lighting. I was curious to see if this one man out could keep his set from slumping. He had a guitar and a fancy pedal or two. And then I see this dude is barefoot! I heard some girl swoon, “it’s so that he can feel the pedals better” I threw up a little in my mouth. Even Stevie Wonder keeps his shoes on, man!
YOAV did hold the audiences interest, but that might owe to the fact that half were made up of his family and friends and most of the others were whatyoucallits.
I found his presentation lacking in innovation and gumption. All his tunes were in 4/4, and the little rhythms he knocked out on his guitar count for shit because they were just fluff. He might be a solo guitarist at first glance, but isn’t it cheating if you loop the bass line? Even James Blunt agrees.
I tried to talk to him after, but he quickly lost interest as the room filled with people who wanted to kiss his feet. Always remember; don’t take praise from fans as the gospel, they’re allowed to drink because they aren’t on the clock.
Some one informed me that this was middle of the road music. He said it with all the conviction of a doctor diagnosing a cold in winter. That leads me to believe that we have become accustomed to accepting mediocrity. Fuck that, I won’t.
Images © and courtesy Dylan Geldenhuys