A deliberately frothy take on an under-documented moment in US politics
New York Bowery Ballroom
It's still everything but the girl...
should have announced that the role of vocalist Kelli Dayton was going to be
played by Chris Corner. Though she has been absent from the line-up for two years, it takes the Bowery Ballroom totally by surprise that
Dayton is no longer with the group, and the resulting response is an
uncomfortable mixture of apathy and New York lip.
"You shouldn't call yourself the Sneaker Pimps!" someone actually yells out
mid-set, to which an annoyed Corner mutters, "Where you've been?".
It doesn't help that the Pimps' latest album, 1999's 'Splinter', hasn't been
released in the States and that the band's hour-long gig relies heavily on
material the majority of the crowd has never heard. There's nothing wrong
with songs like 'Low Five', 'Ten to Twenty', 'Blue Movie' and 'Superbug', but
they prove that there's a new Pimp in town and he's got a plank-size chip on
his shoulder. This is a severe bummer to those who came to see "the girl".
As expected, the crowd warms when the band dips into material from 1996's
acclaimed 'Becoming X'. They play 'No Place Like Home' early on, and after a
perfectly fine '6 Underground', Corner sneers: "Well, that wasn't fuckin'
sacrilege, was it?" Enthusiasm is so scarce tonight that clapping makes him
comment: "What a pleasant sound that is. Thank you."
'Spin Spin Sugar' naturally pleases onlookers the most, although by now
Corner is visibly peeved, lunging forward, spitting out lyrics and finally
dropping the mike with a "That's it. Goodbye."
Amazingly, the band comes out for a one-song encore. It's still everything
but the girl, and for New York that's just not enough.
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