Andrew Bird is just cool. He inhabits an imaginary space in my musical world that no-one else comes near. It would have taken significant setbacks to stop me from enjoying this gig, even though I saw him in February or March in Crawdaddy. I came out of the Crawdaddy gig a little disappointed. It turned out I was just being stupid, because in my memory that gig was great. I wasn’t too versed on Armchair Apocrypha back then though. And I was devastated that he didn’t play A Nervous Tic Motion Of The Head To The Left. I had a bit of an obsession with that song, similar to the obsessions I had with Jellybones by the Unicorns, The Rat by The Walkmen and I’m A Cuckoo by Belle and Sebastian. You know, where you keep skipping back to the start every time it ends on your mp3 player.
Guess what he played on Friday in Tripod? Can you guess? Can you?
Yeah, he played A Nervous Tic Motion Of The Head To The Left.
But seeing as I spent a lot of time listening to Armchair Apocrypha in the meantime, I enjoyed the rest of the gig lots too. Him and Dosh have their loops very tight by now. It’s a mix of consummate professionality (super-tight looping), abject unprofessionality (erasing an entire multi-layered loop), pointless bassists (Jeremy), anecdotes (the explanation to Spare-Ohs is rehearsed, because he used it at Crawdaddy, but it’s still hilarious and insightful) and Willie Nelson-esque heterodox phrasing (in a good way – I just mean he doesn’t sing the songs straight).
Andrew Bird seems like he’d be cool to hang out with as well as being a great songbuilder. And he doesn’t really challenge my heterosexuality. He wasn’t even wearing a scarf.