The Magnetic Fields
Saw the Magnetic Fields last night at town hall (the best sit down concert hall here in new york by the way). Their new album, Distortion aptly named, sounds like a mixture of their usual soft love schlock (and I say schlock in the nicest way possible) mixed with the Jesus and Mary Chain's PsychoCandy. But there was none of that last night... they pulled all the distortion out of Distortion and played their new songs in the same sweetly ironic style that has become their signature move. They played alittle bit of everything from the many possibilities of Stephin Merritt's song catalog. They played old stuff like Take Excstasy with me, a few tunes off I and 69 love songs (Yeah, Oh Yeah! being a particular favorite of mine). They also played some Future Bible Heroes, some 6ths, some stuff off of Showtunes, and even a song for Lemony Snickett.
The best part of the show, for me, is the banter between Claudia Gonson and Stephin Merritt. They argue like an old married couple. Claudia chit-chats on about his and that and this and that, while Stephin grumbles in that deep voice of his under his breath like Archie Buncker. Also charming is Stephin's dislike of noise... going so far as to stick his fingers in his ears while walking off stage and bowing to the croud. If you ever want to go see a show and laugh about love, and believe me I think we all should... go see the Magnetic Fields.