Gutter Twins @ Black Cat, DC [11/7/08]
If you'd asked me a few weeks ago if I'd planned to go to last night's Gutter Twins show at the Black Cat, I'd have said no. I saw the band's show at the 9:30 Club earlier this year and walked away relatively unimpressed (and extremely bored).
However, it was the last night that one of my friends from the Obama campaign was going to be in town before heading home to England, and he was interested in catching a real U.S. indie rock show. So, we went.
And I'm happy we did. First off, I was pleasantly surprised by the opener, Milan, Italy's Afterhours. I'd seen them open for the Twilight Singers before, but they hadn't made a huge impression. Their set last night was excellent, though. Their shorter songs weren't anything special, but their longer, more grandiose songs were quite good. I'm gonna have to check out their latest album, I Milanesi Ammazzano Il Sabato.
Even better, the Gutter Twins' set was also much, much better than the last time they came through town. As my friend remarked, Mark Lanegan has negative stage presence. At the 9:30 Club show, his negative presence outweighed Greg Dulli's larger-than-life stage persona, and ended up causing the show to be pretty stunted and boring. Last night, though, Greg managed to have fun and avoid Lanegan's black hole of negativity. And given that the best songs last night were all Dulli songs (including a version of the Afghan Whigs' "When We Two Parted", this led to a much more entertaining show this time around.
(BTW, this may be the first time I've seen Dulli play an Afghan Whigs tune since 1996, though I could be wrong. Either way, I was ecstatic.)
Now I'm just waiting for a new Twilight Singers album and tour. (I've long since given up on the idea of a Whigs reunion.)