Goat Radio/the Sigourney Weavers; March 15, 2008; Crystal Corner
You never know what will inspire Goat Radio. Instead of the rock and roll standards of girls and cars, their songs are about Midwestern towns (“Gary, Indiana”), characters from epic works of fiction (“Arriza”) or off-hand remarks made by rock legends like John Doe (“Barmaid”). Even a song that sounds like it should be about a girl, “Nadine,” is actually about a long gone, largely unknown St Louis band. The end of 2007 saw most of those songs finally released on CD, which meant their fans could finally hear those songs outside of their seemingly infrequent shows. It also gave us a chance to hear what they had been working on since their inception two years before, though it seemed they hadn’t gotten serious about it till their line-up solidified over a year ago.
Guitarist Don Moore and journeyman bass player Jack Rice proved to be the final pieces to what had been a constantly shifting line-up for their first year of existence. Original members, powerhouse drummer Tony Bitner and bass player turned lead singer/guitarist John Weidenhoeft, seemed to have been waiting patiently for their arrival. Of course, any Goat Radio show is better when Peter Fatka guests on pedal steel, and we were lucky to have him tonight. I agree with Michelle that he should be in every band. Much of tonight’s crowd seemed to be here for headliners the Motor Primitives, but they seemed to enjoy Goat Radio’s energetic and entertaining set. Their cover of Lucinda Williams’ “I Lost It” was especially well-received, not to mention completely unexpected. A few folks I knew who hadn’t seen them in a couple years were duly impressed.
I couldn’t quite stay out late enough to make it till the Primitives set (sorry guys, rough week) but I felt like I had kinda sorta seen them after seeing openers the Sigourney Weavers. I’m tempted to say the name was the best thing about them (c’mon, it is pretty cool), but that’s not quite true. The coolest thing was that the two girls in the coed band were the ones playing the guitars. MP lead singer Pam Barrett and the lead guitarist (formerly of the Getaway Drivers) proved that girls can definitely rock. Always impressive drummer Robin Davies also pulled double duty behind the kit as part of the band. I didn’t mind them, but I can’t lie, I was really just there for the Goat.