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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Clouds, and Crinkles: An Evening of Alliteration with the Arches

Crumbling Arches, The Clouds Are Ghosts,
and a crowd of music enthusiasts

Frequent readers of this blog may be shocked to learn that I had never stepped foot in a venue in downtown Athens on a Monday night... until now. However, if every Monday show is as mind-blowingly spectacular as the Clouds Are Ghosts/Crumbling Arches show I had the incredible pleasure of seeing at the beginning of this week, I'm going to have to make a regular habit of it!

You see, Caledonia's a rather peaceful place so early in the week, perfect for a bit of soft, eerily beautiful music. The Clouds Are Ghosts traveled all the way from their hometown of Austin, Texas to satisfy our ears' needs. From the very first note they played, I was in love with their sound. Their name describes them exactly. Using a keyboard, a violin, and some electronic elements, they weaved together a set of amazing songs that transported me into another realm every time I closed my eyes. Most uniquely, they employed the use of a megaphone for the vocals of several of their tunes. I've never seen that done before! Intriguing... and completely awesome. My friends and I were mesmerized. In fact, their whole show blew me away. Behind them, a screen displayed everything from familiar internet videos to fiery explosions to a velvety black, star-filled sky that changed with the music. The whole effect was quite awe-inspiring, really. And I've got to admit once again, it's awfully hard for other bands to impress me during a show featuring my favorite band, but this group of talented musicians certainly managed to do it. I really hope I get to see them again in the future!

Then it was time. Crumbling Arches time! I've been thirsting for another sip of their delicious theatrical rock for months. Now, seeing as that this was the ninth time I've seen them, I wasn't really expecting any surprises during this show. Boy, was I wrong! Introducing themselves jokingly as "Crinkly Arches," the vocal, guitar playing half of Crumbling Arches seated themselves onstage for a set unlike any other. With Alex on acoustic guitar and Brian on electric, they rocked some of my very favorite songs in ways that I've never heard or even imagined before. Oh wow, it was awesome! And, in between songs, the comedy stylings of Alex and Brian had everyone in the audience cracking up. What with their jokes and their particularly prominent lyrics, it was one of their most memorable shows yet, and for a band known for its acrobatics, hilarious anecdotes, and general antics, that's certainly saying something! Quite simply, I loved it.

Amusingly, both the Clouds Are Ghosts and Crumbling Arches chose to perform their own vampire-inspired songs at this show, just in time for Halloween. The Arches even had everyone in the audience scream as loudly as they could near the end of their ode to the fanged being. Mmm, audience involvement. It's always fun to have a part to play! And then, with October's darkness setting in and hints of my favorite holiday surrounding me, the show came to a spellbinding finish. What a night!

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