The Mermaid Lounge
February 14, 2004
What a strange and wonderful night. John Calhoun was the M.C. who stuck with a tongue-in-cheek anti-Valentineís day credo. Still, there was a lot of love in the packed room, along with uptight anxiety and unabashed testosterone. Iíll let you guess which one came first. Think alcohol.
There was a great mixture of art, performance and music throughout the night. A beautiful yet depressing wire sculpture adorned the back wall, along with a large and colorful oil painting created by an artist while Mexico 1910 played.
The evening began with a hula hoop demonstration by a girl who eventually stripped down to pasties. She was inspirational as she twirled her circle to Big Audio Dynamite.
Next up were some belly dancers whose synchronized movements matched the tone and volume of the electronica/hip hop instrumentals played over the P.A. After they were done wowing the crowd with swords balanced on their heads, the two women adorned in red assisted a drum circle with finger cymbals.
And then the band--instrumental rockers Mexico 1910. They were fairly enjoyable, but the crowd was very reserved, even though they gave up a lot of applause. Maybe it was because the band didnít say one word to the audience, and, other than guitarist Miles Britton, they didnít show any expression. The band was Britton, drummer Dave Jeffries, bassist Brian and guitarist Ashley.
Britton played the emotive, feedback rock god, and he should be commended for trying to put some life into the crowd by jumping into the space between them and the stage and swinging his guitar around. The band played pretty, melodic stuff, but sometimes it felt a little too complicated(look at me, Iím in graduate school!) for its own good. Their beautiful material didnít last long enough to put me in a trance, and their harder beats didnít last long enough to get people rockiní. They infused some weird time signatures, which was cool. (Sidenote: check out Seattle band Hovercraft for some great instrumental rock).
After the set, Jeffries went to the back to get a tattoo on his left forearm by an Ink-A-Bink Tattoo Studio artist. A pretty lady in lingerie manned a $1 kissing booth.