Friday, December 31, 2010
The Dresden Dolls & Jason Webley @ House of Blues San Diego, 11.30.2010
Last night I had the pleasure of attending my first ever Dresden Dolls show. While familiar with the band's catalog, I've personally never really connected with their punk cabaret, but after seeing the show last night, with diehard fans singing along, wearing costumes, and feeling part of their own community, it was impossible not to feel joy and warmth at the show.
Jason Webley kicked off the night. A solo performer, he only had about a thirty minute set and with the length of his songs coupled with his banter and orchestrating the crowd for singalongs, this translated to just about 6 songs, but he was truly captivating. He started his set with just his accordion and a lifted wood stage that had mics for percussive stomping effects. He is heading of on a pretty massive tour, and will play a show on January 6 at Park Gallery, which will definitely be a show worth catching. It's a tiny space and he'll be playing with The Burning of Rome. We'll make sure to have it in next week's listings as a reminder.
The Dresden Dolls came out and gave a very dramatic theatrical punk cabaret performance. Though I had to leave mid-set, they performed for nearly two hours and gave the all ages crowd exactly what they wanted. The duo isn't on a full tour, only playing San Diego and San Francisco, so dedicated fans came from far and wide to catch the show. When I arrived at the House of Blues just before 7, the line was snaking around the block. We had planned on dinner in the restaurant, but with a 45 minute to an hour wait, wandered to San Diego Berr Company instead. When we finished, the line was still wrapped around the building, but I used my best covert operation and got in with enough time to situate myself for photos. Amanda Palmer has quite famously embraced social media, so there was an open camera policy and those of us with photo passes were never asked to leave the pit. It was crowded with 7 photographers, but they only lasted a couple songs and I waited them out and was the lone person in the pit before deciding that I'd maxed out and gotten the shots I needed. I took 300 photos, below is a slideshow of the decent ones.