Friday, May 27, 2005

Song of the Week 5/27/05

They're GOOD bad news.

Rilo Kiley - "Portions for Foxes"

Thursday night I finally had my chance to see Rilo Kiley perform, and rarely has a show far exceeded my expectations as this one. The L.A. group's last album, More Adventurous, landed at number-four on last year's Top 20 list and is a tour de force of guitar-based pop. Singer-guitarist Jenny Lewis sounds like a dry political commentator, a heartbroken homewrecker and the leader of a '60s Phil Spector-produced girl group -- and that's just within the first five songs. I never expected Lewis to play all these roles live, and do it in such a forceful and -- yes, I'm a guy, so I have to say it -- incredibly sexy and seductive way. Lewis strutted around the Webster Hall stage like she knew she owned it. It was such a confident and powerful performance that I can't imagine Rilo Kiley not breaking through to a much bigger audience very soon (perhaps when they open Coldplay's U.S. tour later this summer).

Thursday night's performance of "Portions For Foxes," the second single from More Adventurous (which has gotten a recent push from their new label, Warner Brothers) was absolutely perfect and justified the 12 times I listened to the song this week. Lewis sings about someone that's bad for her, but she just can't shake. It's a topic many folks (including yours truly) can easily identify with. This verse and chorus always slays me:

"I know I'm alone if I'm with or without you
But just bein' around you offers me another form of relief
When the lonliness leads to bad dreams
And the bad dreams lead me to callin' you
And I call you and say..."C'MERE!"

And it's bad news
Baby I'm bad news
I'm just bad news, bad news, bad news"

Oh yeah, I know you're bad news Jenny, but I'm sure that wouldn't stop me or the other 599 tongues-a-wagging indie rock guys at Webster Hall from taking that phone call from you.

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