Noise Pop Show Review: The Mumlers with Sonny and the Sunsets at Cafe Du Nord, 2/26/10

by Pouria Yazdi on February 28, 2010

Ho hum?

Some mildly shocking things happened at the Cafe Du Nord. Friday night was the first time I had ever been to Cafe Du Nord in my life. I know, shocking right? The last time I wanted to see at Cafe Du Nord was when I was 18, begging the Cafe to let me in so I could see Erin McKeown. I had a huge crush on her back in the day. So I walked into the Cafe and liked what I saw, a bar, pool tables, and a cool setup.

I had decided not to get drunk that night, another shocking thing. I was trying to keep it cool because I’ve been nursing this sore throat since Monday. The first band I saw tonight was Sonny and the Sunsets. This is a three-piece band: guitars, bass, and drums. Sonny was sporting a Hawaiian shirt, a hole in his jeans, and a well-worn guitar. I respect well worn instruments, in fact the bassist was also carrying a very well used instrument. Double respect.

When Sonny first started singing I immediately thought this was going to be a really bad performance. I initially didn’t care for his voice. Then during the first song he broke a string on his guitar. Instead of replacing it he played the rest of the night with 5-strings. Surprisingly, though, it barely phased how good the set became. His lyrics are pretty straightforward. Think Iggy Pop/Lou Reed in style. They sound innocent enough, but tend to be more on the subversive side. For example he had a song called “I wanna do it” which is about S&M. If you listened to the song without that knowledge you’d think it was some sweet, throwback song.

Taking Pouria by surprise

Sonny and the Sunsets played 10 songs in their set. As the night went on I grew to like them more. After the eighth song they had a little trouble deciding what to play. It didn’t seem like they expected to be on the stage for that long. Their discussions slightly stole the thunder of the show, but overall I thought they did great.

The Growlers were up next, I didn’t even stick around for even the first song. Wasn’t my bag. The crowd loved them though.

Then it was The Mumlers turn. They utilized clarinets, french horns, tubas, stand-up bass, and fake mustaches. I had a bit of an argument with my concert companion, she thought they were real. But as the night went on and those fake moustaches fell off their faces I was vindicated.

The Mumlers are the kind of band you bring a girl to, hold her in your arms, and sway. The crowd was odd for me. I did not realize that the type of person that goes to a Mumlers show hasn’t showered for a few days, has a goatee, beanie, and lights up during the show. It all became clear to me, this is the perfect hippy-storm-band. Horns and love lyrics that sound a bit soulful? I should’ve known better.

The audience would dance happily during some really sad songs. This was odd as well. I did enjoy some of the songs, especially those with three horns, but overall I found the show really ho-hum. The body odor smell was also really got to me. As I was heading for the door I noticed there really weren’t that many people on the floor checking these guys outs, maybe they couldn’t hang with the B.O. either.

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