Raving about the Raveonettes

Categories: Concert Review

The Raveonettes
7th St. Entry, March 17, 2008
Review by Jeff Shaw
Photos by Daniel Corrigan

Did St. Patrick ever make it to Denmark? Doubtful. But the free access between the First Avenue mainroom and 7th St. Entry packed Danish duo the Raveonettes' show at the Entry on St. Paddy's Day. Green bead-bedecked partygoers out simply to celebrate mixed amiably with fans of the Scandinavian popsters.

Enjoyable as the music is, festive isn't quite the word to describe the Raveonettes. Blending atmospheric modern rock with danceable retro creations, the group gives off an easy, brooding cool. Album opener (and set closer) "Aly, Walk With Me" gives one the feeling of being in a 1950s film noir -- or a Tarantino flick that nods toward the past with an edge.

cpRaven2717.jpg
The Raveonettes. More photos by Daniel Corrigan.

When the slower, moodier songs gave way to the more upbeat, though, visitors saw the power of fusing the Ronettes with indie rock. An early rendition of the gem "Dead Sound" got people moving, as did a later rendition of the surf rock ditty "You Want the Candy." Presumably I'm not the only one with that tune stuck in my head hours later.

They're not a shoegaze band by any means, but the Raveonettes' wall-of-sound arrangements and soaring guitar tones make their show a much more aural than visual one. This is despite Sharin Foo's silver brocaded top and haircut reminiscent of Pris from Blade Runner. There's no on-stage acrobatics, no jumping about. Just well-paced songs with well-placed vocal harmonies.

And it's enough. Well before the band encored with "Twilight," it was apparent some were at the Entry to dance, some were there to listen, and some were there intending on a different show entirely. But drawn by the power of pop songcraft, we all stayed. St. Patrick is said to have driven the snakes out of Ireland, and if they would have played a second encore, you would have had to have driven us out, too.

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