Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Leo Blais at The Middle East Upstairs

Oh local music, you are so great.

After a weekend of showers, Erin and I headed to The Middle East Upstairs to see friend and fellow bowler Leo Blais put on a Sunday night show. It was a decently-sized crowd for a Sunday night at nine, and Leo et al put on a good set.

I have to admit, unfortunately, that I wasn't very familiar with Leo's music before attending, though I did look up several of his songs on Blip and Youtube before attending. I liked what I heard (as I've mentioned before, I am a sucker for a piano-based song) and saw. As I told Erin, anyone who covers George Harrison's Beware of Darkness on the piano is good people. So off we went.

Erin compared Leo's voice to a bit like Ben Folds, which I can see. I would call his sound at times solemn and deep, but also had a lightness to it that many pop acts have. He and the musicians he played with were having a good time on stage, which made the crowd have a good time as well. The audience was definitely into Leo Blais and his music, as well as all over the map as far as age. As Erin joked, "I believe we have a mom sighting".

The more shows I see at Middle East, the more I like that space. The dinner space up front is way too small and I sometimes feel bad for people dining there since there are tons of concert-goers walking all around them, but I think you have to expect that here. I'm looking forward to seeing more shows there in the future.

So this morning while preparing for writing this post and looking for picutres of Leo, I found the following videos. The first is an interview with Leo, along with an installation art piece he created in his Lowell apartment with lyrics from his album. This is very, very cool.

Leo Blais - The Free EP from Leo Blais on Vimeo.

And second, here's a (unfortunately not very good) live version of Everyone's Feeling Alone at TT's:

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