Sometimes you get caught off-guard by a performance that cuts through the hype, jaded irony, and free Red Stripe haze. Such was the case at Saturday’s early-ish performance by Portand’s The Blow at the Fader Sideshow. Running late, I only caught four songs, but it was still the best show I saw all week by a mile.
Lady Sovereign and Lily Allen have nothing on Khaela Maricich, who had the crowd hanging on every word — and she did it with only a microphone and a iPod. While on record the band is Maricich and beat designer / production wiz Jona Bechtolt, it’s been a one-woman Blow on this current tour. After seeing her, I’m of the opinion other people would just get in the way.
Maricich is a funny, charming, engaging — and yes, sexy — performer who seemed entirely comfortable being alone on the stage. Despite the prerecorded backing tracks, the songs (mostly from their great new album Paper Television) felt more like conversations here, taking time for digressions where the music would stop mid-song and she’d go off on a tangent, but the beats would kick back in at just the right moment. She has, as they say, amazing flow.
MP3: The Blow – "The Long List of Girls", which Maricich joked she was trying to sell to Beyoncé.
She reduced many a hoodied blogger to stammering idiots that day. In attendance: Heart on a Stick, Yeti Don’t Dance, and many more.
Photo swiped from The Rotation Room.