So on Wednesday I went to an Amanda Palmer concert at the Palac Akropolis in Prague. It was a pretty sweet show, though I was a little disappointed as she seemed to be low on energy. I had never seen her live before, so maybe that’s how she is at all of her shows, but I kind of doubt it. I mean, I have seen videos of her playing live on Youtube, and she seems to be full of energy. But, it was a Wednesday night, and it was the end of her tour, and she had just played in Antwerp the night before, so I would not be surprised to learn that she was a little tired and worn out.
What really disappointed me, though, was simply that she did not seem to do very many of her own/Dresden Dolls songs. Or maybe she did, but it didn’t really seem like it. However, that could just be because the show was kind of thrown together and she didn’t really have a plan. Maybe that was the biggest problem I had with the show–its lack of focus. Now, I don’t need my rock shows to be all disciplined and shit, but I do pay hard-earned (okay may no too hard-earned) money to go to these things, and I expect a bit of showmanship/care concerning what the show will be.
She did play this song, though, which is pretty awesome because I really like it and did not expect to hear it. Amanda is the one on the piano. The other woman is named Gaba Kulka, she opened the show, and I thought she did a great song signing her parts in this song.
And Delilah was not the only high point of the evening. There were a couple of sing along songs, one called for by Jason Webley, who was a lot of fun. Here is a song of his, though it wasn’t the one he asked us to sing along with, nor is the video from the show I was at, though he did play this song.
I really dig this song. I think it’s because it reminds me of Tom Waits.
The other sing along was a drinking song and it featured everyone who had performed on stage with Amanda during the show. Both times, the performers had some difficulty getting the crowd to sing along, and this brought a smile to my face. And no, it’s not because I subscribe to the idea of Schadenfreude, but because they were experiencing what I experience every day. I know there were some Americans and Brits at the concert, but I am almost positive that the majority of the audience was Czech, and Czechs seem to be easily embarrassed. They also seem to be quite unwilling to participate in activities like this.
I know from trying to teach them in the class room. They don’t speak so much because they lack confidence in their abilities and they don’t want to embarrass themselves. And when I try to get the whole class to say something at the same time, only like one-third of the class will actually speak while the rest will remain silent. So it was refreshing to see that I am not the only one to elicit that reaction from them.
All in all it was a good show, though, and I am not sorry one bit that I went. And she did play some older Dolls songs, including this hilariously dirty homage of sorts to Lolita (this video IS from the show I was at),
so that was nice.
Things I could have done without:
The Billie Jean cover. It was all right, but unnecessary.
Her cover of Radiohead’s Creep. I like Radiohead, but I have never really been a big fan of that song (though I must say I did enjoy it when they played it at Coachella in 2004 with the Pixes, but I think that was because it was something special–he dedicated it to Frank Black, after all), and while her rendition wasn’t terrible, I still did not really like it. Here it is, judge for yourself: