Punknews.org

Say Anything / mewithoutYou / Piebald

Say Anything / mewithoutYou / Piebald: live in New Yorklive in New York (2006)
Sony Music Entertainment

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: InaGreendaseBrian
(others by this writer | submit your own)

Say Anything recorded one of my favorite albums of 2004 in ...Is a Real Boy, and that's something I really can't deny. Despite the nagging realization that maybe their hooks are less smart than I'd initially perceived, and a swelling fanbase prodding hot pokers at the repressed elitist inside me, th.


Say Anything recorded one of my favorite albums of 2004 in ...Is a Real Boy, and that's something I really can't deny. Despite the nagging realization that maybe their hooks are less smart than I'd initially perceived, and a swelling fanbase prodding hot pokers at the repressed elitist inside me, the songs hold up fairly well after two years. With the announcement that three bands I'd consider myself at least a casual fan of would support big headlining tour for the now budding major label stars, it was clear my calendar would be marked.

Days Away plays a weird type of dreamy, lazy, atmospheric emo pop that's light on the ears but heavy on the senses. I noticed frontman Keith Goodwin was not holding a guitar, a rather recent development; this also meant they were a six-piece and boasting a three-guitar "attack." In any event, they were like their 2005 album, Mapping an Invisible World: solid. Things began with the upstroke-tinged "It's Not Over," and it was clear Goodwin's stage moves were plain odd; he bobbed around rather loosely in a fairly trippy manner. I guess it was just a reflection of the band's musical traits. Also included in the set was "Gravity" and the great "God and Mars," the latter of which closed the set, and a new song or two that seemed to depend a little less on melody and even more on atmosphere.

Piebald was a whole lot of fucking fun, straight up. For a band around as long as them and being put third on the bill, you'd expect a few completely bitter douches, but few acts just seem as plain happy as them to play, even here. I only really know their last two albums, 2002's We Are the Only Friends We Have and 2004's All Ears, All Eyes, All the Time, so I recognized "American Hearts," "The Benefits of Ice Cream," "The Monkey versus the Robot," and "The Stalker." As for the one or two new songs, there was a lot to like: creative riffs, decent hooks and a solid rock base. Travis Shettel also mentioned something like a Jan. 23 release for the album (he said the 22nd, but as that's a Monday I presume it's the day after).

Without a doubt I was most anticipating mewithoutYou. They were a wonderful sight when I saw them with Minus the Bear supporting Thursday, but I hadn't yet seen them beyond familiarizing myself with their new, mesmerizing effort, Brother, Sister. I was excited to see how their more reflective side would translate live, besides "In a Sweater Poorly Knit," which I already knew was incredible. What I got was exactly what I expected, entrancing, captivating, and otherworldly all at once. Things began with "Torches Together" and followed by "Nice and Blue, Pt. Two," and I could tell the new cuts were translating flawlessly. Frontman Aaron Weiss seems to be getting less and less anxious onstage as time goes by, but his voice is still pretty shaky when he addresses his crowd, and his nervous twitch isn't fully shaken until he himself is shaking -- flailing around his body in a loose, excited state. While there seemed to be quite a few confused looks in the audience, I and two friends were loving every note. We were definitely surprised at the lack of "January 1979," but the others made it worth the wait: "The Dryness and the Rain," "A Glass Can Only Spill What It Contains," "O, Porcupine," the fantastic closer of "In a Sweater Poorly Knit" of course, and "Four Word Letter, Pt. 2" among a few others I'm sure. The backup vocalist/guitarist even replicated Jeremy Enigk's vocals perfectly on one of the two songs they played that showcases his guest work on the album -- his soothing "ah"s are indeed frequently pleasing on the ears. All in all, I can honestly say mewithoutYou creeps up my list of favorite bands a little more with each listen and/or sight.

Some heavy retreating to freer space towards the back of the crowd was in order for viewing Say Anything's set. I sang along quietly to the hour-plus set in which they played nearly everything from ...Is a Real Boy, plus a few B-sides, "A Walk Through Hell" and a couple from the reissue's bonus disc. Max seems to have come into his own as a frontman, commanding the crowd well but seeming a little apprehensive to absolve any of the rockstar clich├ęs just yet (a good thing, mind you). The rest of the band really seemed like a *band* despite their limited time together -- a band which includes a former member of JamisonParker, now in a plenty more respectable place (no idea whether it's Jamison or Parker); they provided plenty of emphatic shout-alongs and competent playing on the guitars and, by Jamison or Parker, the keys. The crowd ate it all up, but I wonder if they thought the lights were as obnoxious as I did; the constant flashing for some songs (particularly "Little Girls," which had to be funny for anyone to witness a plethora of little girls singing "I want to kill kill kill little girls") was just annoying. The band capped off a three-song encore with "Admit It!!!," which received one of the biggest responses. In all, it was decently enjoyable, but I'd probably need to see another solid or better trio of openers to see them again in a place even bigger than Irving Plaza.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
The Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!Champion / Betrayed - SplitSinking Ships - DisconnectingLife Long Tragedy / Final Fight - Split [7 inch]Lifetime - LifetimeThe Ataris - So Long, AstoriaBigwig - Unmerry MelodiesNo Motiv - LolaFairweather - LusitaniaBandits of the Acoustic Revolution - A Call to Arms

Please login or register to post comments.What are the benefits of having a Punknews.org account?
  • Share your opinion by posting comments on the stories that interest you
  • Rate music and bands and help shape the weekly top ten
  • Let Punknews.org use your ratings to help you find bands and albums you might like
  • Customize features on the site to get the news the way you want.
Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
jay_klinkhammer (November 14, 2006)

Or back when Say Anything didn't attract 14 year olds either. Fuck kids.

What songs to Mewithoutyou play? I know all of SA and I found a playlist of Piebald. Forgive Durden is terrible.

I like mewithoutyou's first full length...and not high on the new one.

Anonymous (October 30, 2006)

im pretty much nobody,

but i sincerely think that mewithoutYou borderlines on amazingness, and i dont think that needs explanation.

EliseEffect (October 23, 2006)

I actually just had the chance to interview Aaron for a magazine that I write for. Great guy, great band, and great album. I should be seeing them in mid-November, at least I hope. We'll see. But, I did get to see them this summer at Warped Tour. Great live performance.

Anonymous (October 21, 2006)

"success" means something different to pretty much every single musician, so of course they're all in it to be successful. by their own definition.

piebald are still kid touchers

sweetsugarpezz (October 19, 2006)

yea so anyway, i saw this wednesday in atlanta:

-missed whatever crappy band opened.
-piebald slayed and always will slay. such a fun band, nice guys too.
-mewithoutYou continues to impress me everytime i see them. this being the third time, i was captivated by weiss and his flailing. something about the enegry he posseses yet the frailness in his voice pull me into the songs. these guys can write some great lines, and they continue to be one of the most innovative acts around. very solid band.
-with that said, i was mostly here to see piebald and mewithoutYou. my lady likes say anything and i think they can be lumped into my "tolerable" list. not too bad, but the wimpy guys in the six piece band (see jamison parker) regaled the crowd with "you are the best so far" and "this is what it is all about, no seriously, you have no idea!" horseshit. bemis is a pretty decent frontman, yet i have seen much better. catchy songs for sure, but they begin to lose their catchiness after an hour or so; not to mention all the screaming girls and douchey dudes.

overall, this show was enjoyable for piebald's fun set and mewithoutYou's solid show introducing live interpretations from their stellar release "Brother, Sister." maybe more stars could be doled out if it was only these two bands playing longer sets. say anything is decent but i would not bother to see them again.

shit that was longer than it should have been,

-sweetsugarpezz

Anonymous (October 19, 2006)

I'll stop too but I'd like to make my closing argument before the jury goes off in their little room:

1.) "And, you know, musicians, most of whom, I have seen firsthand, are in it to be successful, NOT create meaning, might argue that meter or rhythym is more meaningful than words, but as for some who is an English major, like myself, NO. That idea is everything wrong with literature and poetry today."

As an english major the mere idea that you are responsible for this sentence should make you puke and die.

2.) Kid A

Discredited the defense, slammed it home with a piece of irrefutable evidence. You can go ahead and slam that gavel big guy, we all know what the verdict's gonna be.

Scruffy (October 19, 2006)

1) You're completely missing MY point.

2)That's not the only reason the Flaming Lips are everything wrong with music. If you can't see the reasons, you won't ever see them, so keep dancing to your barely-more-intelligent-than-Britney indie pop.

3)I'm not saying that what you talk about with Built To Spill and lyrics and blah blah blah doesn't happen. I'm saying I have higher standards and want lyrics to mean something. If you're happy wasting your time with meaningless "art", go ahead. It is funny that all the bands you've mentioned, even the ones whose lyrics I've never looked at in depth, are ones I don't like even with a peripheral glance, let alone a hard look.

I'm going to stop now. Neither of us is going to change. You're going to keep saying lyrics don't have to be important, and I'm going to keep saying that every aspect of singwriting should be equally important.

Anonymous (October 18, 2006)

You're utterly missing the point here. No one is asking you to find depth in their lyrics. The point is, who cares about the lyrics? Many many quality bands have 'shallow' or meaningless lyrics. I read in a Doug Martsch interview (Built to Spill) that his lyrics, which I frequently find very interesting, are little more then an after thought to his music. But that aside, how do nonsensical lyrics make The Flaming Lips 'everything that is wrong with music today'? That's really a completely baseless statement. So is calling Mr. Coyne a blowhard (blowhard=braggart, not author of strange lyrics).

jamespastepunk (October 18, 2006)

Did you know that words are secondary in poetry? Rhyme, meter, structure, rhythm are all much more important. I suspect that quite alot of musicians would agree with this sentiment. There are other ways to create meaning.

I'll let Kristian from CRIME IN STEREO answer this one:

It's important to me that lyrics get your point across rather than just fill a beat.

Scruffy (October 18, 2006)

A paraphrase of a quote taken completely devoid of context. Well, I guess that trumps everything I've said!

In all seriousness, yes, I have heard Soft Bulletin, probably more times than many people who own it. I used to work at a record store, and all the other people there LOVED the Lips. I've heard both Soft Bulletin and Yoshimi so freaking much it hurts. I probably haven't listened to half of the albums I own more than them.
Sorry, but they might enjoy what they do, but it doesn't make it good. I find no depth in any of their lyrics. Seriously, pink robots, Superman, "Do You Realize?"?!

Anonymous (October 18, 2006)

To me generic, recycled bands like Nickleback et al are whats wrong with music today. Bands like the Lips who are out there creating unique, interesting music pretty much just because they like to create music are whats right with it (though certainly the Lips are just as interested as Nickleback in making money, its just the lips dont sacrifice their sound for the sake of money, in my opinion). And I know it's not punk but have you ever heard Soft Bulletin? It's really really good. (FYI The Fall is really really good too and sound nothing like the lips, I highly recommend them).

In regards to poetry, my previous statement was a sloppy paraphrase of a quote by Samuel Coleridge I came across in research for a paper I wrote last year on Lyrical Ballads. Suffice it to say, even if you think I cant tell my dick from a stick in the ground, Mr. Coleridge certainly knew exactly what he was talking about.

Anonymous (October 18, 2006)

you kids are soooo funny. joan of arc forever....motherfuckers.

Anonymous (October 18, 2006)

say anything fans are DEFINITELY fucking annonying as shit. this show was fantastic though, and if the tour comes your way, don't miss it. all the openers are great

Scruffy (October 18, 2006)

Yeah, most of what I said was directed at the other guy's comments. It's becoming more and more obvious that you, Will, actually do just like what you like, even if we disagree about as much as is possible.

Anonymous (October 18, 2006)

It's something that takes talent to pull off, but Kinsella is a Literature or English major, and he is interesting. Same with the Fall. Yeah, if the guys with the lyrical talent of Piebald or someone tried for the same, they would fall flat, but to say there's no room for this approach to lyrics just makes you seem bitter and closeminded.

And I mean, fuck, I gave the Formaldehyde Junkies a 10 or something. I don't claim to like music just to sound smart. I like it because I like it.

-Will

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

No, Wayne Coyne is a blowhard that represents every single thing that is wrong with rock music today.
I've actually never heard the Fall, so I can't say about them.

And, you know, musicians, most of whom, I have seen firsthand, are in it to be successful, NOT create meaning, might argue that meter or rhythym is more meaningful than words, but as for some who is an English major, like myself, NO. That idea is everything wrong with literature and poetry today.

If you can create depth and passion with all the things you said, AND pair it with actual meaningful, poetic profound words, it's the best it can be. Why anyone would ever try for less is beyond me.

mashole (October 17, 2006)

it seems like every time i want to write a review for the first time on a show brian comes and writes an hour after the show.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

"I don't see the lyric thing as pretentious at all, which is cool, because until now, that's how I've seen his lyrics.
What I do see it as is a coward's way to avoid risking writing something bad by writing something meaningless and ethereal that can be openly interpreted. It's the same thing as bands that write about zombies or pink robots and japanese girls. Why do you care to write anything if you can't be bothered to write anything with any meaning?"

So Wayne Coyne is a coward for writing about pink robots? Mark E Smith's lyrics are largely nonsense, does that mean The Fall doesn't kick ass?

Did you know that words are secondary in poetry? Rhyme, meter, structure, rhythm are all much more important. I suspect that quite alot of musicians would agree with this sentiment. There are other ways to create meaning.

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

Unless it's a chick masturbating, and then it's hot. But that throws off my metaphor.

Also, there is truth to your statement about Say Anything. But they're still good.

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

I don't see the lyric thing as pretentious at all, which is cool, because until now, that's how I've seen his lyrics.
What I do see it as is a coward's way to avoid risking writing something bad by writing something meaningless and ethereal that can be openly interpreted. It's the same thing as bands that write about zombies or pink robots and japanese girls. Why do you care to write anything if you can't be bothered to write anything with any meaning?

I guess, the way I see it, there's a certain amount of experimentation before you start to become lost in your belief in your own genius. Then, it's just like watching someone masturbate. Sure, they might be good at it, but it's boring at best and gross at worst.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

"Like I've said before, there's a difference between something that you have to think about to truly enjoy and something that you think about until you force yourself to enjoy it and believe it's intelligent. While I do concede that not everything experimental is pretentious, I think fans of more experimental music need to think about whether what they're listening to is the first or second thing I mentioned above.
Even if you take out the word "pretentious" from my description of Joan Of Arc, the rest still stands. It's music for theorists who don't waste their time on something unless it makes them feel more intelligent or weirder than everyone else."

Okay, as long as we're generalizing everybody by what music they listen to, I think it's much safer to assume that Say Anything is music for 15 year old girls who think they're weird because they own a Bright Eyes CD. I truly enjoy Owls. Just because you don't doesn't mean nobody else does. The 4th track on their album is fucking catchy and interesting. Tim Kinsella's lyrics have no definite meaning, but he's stated in interviews that that's kind of the point- so other people can interpret them however they want to. I personally don't see that as pretentious, but I can see how someone who wants to restrict music/lyrics to definite subjects would misunderstand the point of that.

Say what you will about their music, but JoA, Owls, and Make Believe are all doing something for a reason that isn't as shallow as saying "look, we're smart." They do genuinely interesting stuff.

-Will

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

"but to try and attack a band just because you don't understand or want to understand them is kind of lame."

That's the exact kind of logic irritating forever-in-college English majors use to fend off people who call Gravity's Rainbow a load of theoretically sound yet totally unentertaining garbage. I can't stand anything Kinsella does (save for some Cap N Jazz). I bought the Owls' CD even, and I couldn't stand it.

Like I've said before, there's a difference between something that you have to think about to truly enjoy and something that you think about until you force yourself to enjoy it and believe it's intelligent. While I do concede that not everything experimental is pretentious, I think fans of more experimental music need to think about whether what they're listening to is the first or second thing I mentioned above.
Even if you take out the word "pretentious" from my description of Joan Of Arc, the rest still stands. It's music for theorists who don't waste their time on something unless it makes them feel more intelligent or weirder than everyone else.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

piebald forgot how to play their songs in phily

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

Truth be told, I thought that Tim was pretty much a douchbag when I watched Make Believe play. I think both Make Believe and Joan of Arc are OK, but they are both extremely pretentious and annoying and that is reason enough to hate any band.

punky_chips_ahoy_oi_oi_oi (October 17, 2006)

piebald deserves better than these clowns.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

piebald probably found some middle schoolers to touch, so they were happy

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

"I think you should just throw the Joan Of Arc records in the trash, because that's where toneless, aimless pretentious crap goes."

Why does everything that's at all experimental have to be "pretentious crap?" Just because it's not recognizable doesn't make it bad. Tim Kinsella is a really intelligent guy, and his music is interesting if nothing else. I don't listen to bands because they're "good at their instruments," but Joan of Arc and Make Believe are both extremely talented as musicians.

I guess there's nothing wrong with liking pop rock or whatever, but to try and attack a band just because you don't understand or want to understand them is kind of lame.

-Will

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

More piebald less everything else!

danperrone (October 17, 2006)

joan of arc is one of the worst bands around

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

I think you should just throw the Joan Of Arc records in the trash, because that's where toneless, aimless pretentious crap goes.

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

I think you should just throw the Joan Of Arc records in the trash, because that's where toneless, aimless pretentious crap goes.

GlassPipeMurder (October 17, 2006)

i'll buy them...for free.
(not because i don't like them, because i have no money)

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

im selling all of my piebald records just because they are playing with these two shit bands. long live joan of arc.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

this is really funny. two shit head bands together for all the asshole fans. fuck mewithoutyou, and fuck say anything. this ones for joan of fucking arc, the only real band left in these days. long live joan of arc. max is an idiot and needs to give up his shit day job. and all of mewithout you should only continue as a shit church band. end of fucking story. tim and co. all that matters.

Scruffy (October 17, 2006)

Never feel guilty about liking Say Anything. Is A Real Boy is one of the best albums released this decade. Sheer genius.

GlassPipeMurder (October 17, 2006)

can't wait to go to this. Piebald has been a favorite for almost a year now, and I just got into Say Anything, but Admit It!!! has gotta be one of my favorite "songs" right now.

Archangel (October 17, 2006)

Anonymous -- I'm pretty sure he was talking about Say Anything.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

yeah, mewithoutyou is totally for 14 year olds. I wonder if it's the strange, obtuse spoken word lyrics on God or the atmospheric guitars and strangely structured songs that bring the hot topic crowd out in droves. shut the hell up

SloaneDaley (October 17, 2006)

I found Say Anything to have the most annoying qualities per average fan ratio out of any band I enjoy, but I found them to be exceptional live so it makes up for it. Score if for their live show.

Anonymous (October 17, 2006)

it was nice when piebald toured with bands that didn't attract exclusively 14 year old girls... those were the days.

Exclusive Streams

Sponsored


The Fest 13

Newest Reviews

Punknews.org Team

Other Places to Go