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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Review Mon Feb 22 2010

Review: St. Vincent @ Metro 2/18/10

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St. Vincent (Photos by Katie Hovland)

I was first exposed to the exquisite voice of Annie Clark, otherwise known as St. Vincent, back in 2007 when she opened for Arcade Fire at the Chicago Theatre. She only had to speak the words, "Jesus saves, I spend," and I was hooked. I didn't know a thing about her at the time, so discovering that she was a member of Polyphonic Spree and had toured with Sufjan Stevens, two acts I adore, was only icing on the cake. Unfortunately, I haven't had the chance to catch her live since then (though I hear she gave a breathtaking performance in Millennium Park last summer). Seeing as though Actor was one of my favorite albums of 2009, I jumped at the chance to finally see her again this past Thursday at Metro.

The show was sold out and the place was packed. Annie's bombastic, haunting tunes were entrancing and, in combination with her intense blue and green lighting, she had no problem filling up the room. However, the major downside of the packed house came when she broke into some of her more downtempo songs. The crowd became disinterested, and there were times when I couldn't even hear her over their chatter. This most likely could have been prevented if I hadn't chosen to stand near the bar, which is never a good idea.

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I'm usually one to avoid set list spoilers as much as possible, but going into this show, I'd already heard about the bluesy cover of The Beatles' "Dig A Pony" that she's been playing on her current tour. Seeing as though "Dig A Pony" is one of my all-time favorite songs, I couldn't keep myself from checking out videos of her playing the song on YouTube in anticipation of hearing her "roll a stoney" in person. Well, I shouldn't have gotten my hopes up, because apparently Ms. Clark decided to play the song on every stop of her tour except the Metro show. Instead, she announced she'd be playing a cover song, and went into a long explanation of why Ice Cube's "Today Was A Good Day" is one of her favorite songs. The idea of a St. Vincent cover of an Ice Cube song was almost enough to quell my heartache over not hearing "Dig A Pony", but the story was a fake-out, and she settled on a cover of Jackson Browne's "These Days".

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Nonetheless, she played some of my favorites throughout the evening, including "Actor Out Of Work", "Black Rainbow", and "Save Me From What I Want". She ended the night with overwhelmingly captivating renditions of "Paris is Burning" and "Your Lips Are Red", and left the Metro with a roar of energy.

If you missed her this time around, she's already confirmed to play Pitchfork Fest on Sunday, July 18th. Hurry to snag your tickets, because I'd venture to say with Pavement as the headlining act that night, Sunday will most likely be the first day of Pitchfork Fest to sell out.

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Michael Curti / February 22, 2010 8:21 PM

nice review. and, by the way, she didn't play "Dig A Pony" in Pittsburgh either. she wore the same dress though, haha.

I did a review on the Pittsburgh show, Sun. Feb 22nd.

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Feature Thu Dec 31 2015

Our Final Transmission Days

By The Gapers Block Transmission Staff

Transmission staffers share their most cherished memories and moments while writing for Gapers Block.

Read this feature »


  Chicago Music Media

Alarm Magazine
Big Rock Candy Mountain
Boxx Magazine
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago
Can You See The Sunset From The Southside
Chicago Reader Music
Chicagoist Arts & Events
Chicago Music Guide
Chicago Singles Club
Country Music Chicago
Cream Team
Dark Jive
The Deli Chicago
Jim DeRogatis
Fake Shore Drive
Gowhere Hip Hop
The Hood Internet
Jaded in Chicago
Largehearted Boy
Little White Earbuds
Live Fix Blog
Live Music Blog
Loud Loop Press
Oh My Rockness
Pop 'stache
Pop Matters
Resident Advisor
Sound Opinions
Sun-Times Music Blog
Theft Liable to Prosecution
Tribune Music
UR Chicago
Victim Of Time
WFMU's Beware of the Blog
Windy City Rock


Abbey Pub
Andy's Jazz Club
Aragon Ballroom
Auditorium Theatre
Beat Kitchen
Bottom Lounge
Buddy Guy's Legends
The Burlington
California Clipper
Concord Music Hall
Congress Theater
Cubby Bear
Double Door
Elbo Room
Empty Bottle
Green Mill
The Hideout
Honky Tonk BBQ
House of Blues
Kingston Mines
Lincoln Hall
Logan Square Auditorium
Mayne Stage
The Mutiny
Old Town School of Folk Music
Park West
The Promontory
Red Line Tap
Reggie's Rock Club & Music Joint
The Riviera
Thalia Hall
The Shrine
Symphony Center
Tonic Room
Uncommon Ground
The Vic
The Whistler

  Labels, Promoters
  & Shops:

Alligator Records
Beverly Records
Bloodshot Records
Dave's Records
Delmark Records
Drag City
Dusty Groove
Flameshovel Records
Groove Distribution
He Who Corrupts
Jam Productions
Jazz Record Mart
Kranky Records
Laurie's Planet of Sound
Minty Fresh
Numero Group
mP Shows
Permanent Records
Reckless Records
Smog Veil Records
Southport & Northport Records
Thick Records
Thrill Jockey Records Touch & Go/Quarterstick Records
Victory Records

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Transmission is the music section of Gapers Block. It aims to highlight Chicago music in its many varied forms, as well as cover touring acts performing in the city. More...
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