Thursday, May 10, 2018
Concert Review: The Breeders at the Rave
My mother asked if I was having an affair after I told her I was in Milwaukee when she called me on Wednesday. C’mon mom! Infidelity hadn’t crossed my mind, although I’ll confess that I swooned over Kim and Kelley Deal at a concert by The Breeders a few hours later.
I hadn’t seen the accomplished indie-rockers in so long that I’d forgotten how effortlessly the sisters’ radiant smiles and warm voices can beguile large audiences. About 1,000 people purchased $30 and $40 tickets to grin and sing along with the reunited classic lineup of the band at The Rave.
The Breeders’ 95-minute outing resembled the feel-good resolution of a reality television program. Two of rock’s most agreeable eccentrics, the Deal sisters engaged in testy repartee that seemed like good-natured familial banter rather than the symptom of a more serious conflict.
I’m still not sold on the quartet’s new album All Nerve, but renditions of fresh selections including “Walking with a Killer,” “Get in the Car” and “MetaGoth” were every bit as powerful as versions of older tracks like “Cannonball” and the Pixies jam “Gigantic.” Even so, I couldn’t shake the sense that even first-rate rock in 2018 is akin to Dixieland in 1958- it can still be vibrant and meaningful, but it’s a marginal form on the wane.
Irresistibly cheap airfare rather than the concert or a tryst (really, Ma?) lured me to Wisconsin, but the Breeders provided a nostalgic highlight of my chaste getaway.
I write weekly concert previews for The Kansas City Star.
(Original image by There Stands the Glass.)