White Arrows in the ‘Hood.
First, I was SO sick. I almost resigned myself to staying in bed in my sweats before I decided I would just suck it up and go. If I didn’t, I knew I would regret it. So I do my best to get half-ready and out the door to pick up my friend.
It’s Seattle — so it’s no surprise it’s fucking cold in February. When we drove by the venue and saw the line outside, we groaned and wondered why everyone hadn’t been in yet when we were late. I drove around the same 4 or 5 blocks countless times (with my friend hyperventilating in the passenger seat at Seattle traffic, pedestrians, my driving, the buildings, the sky; Anything she laid eyes on, really.) before finally settling on parking in a pay lot. We decided to wait a few minutes before the creeper lurking around my car trying to pawn off parking stubs went away. We went back and forth about whether we should just say forget it. The final consensus in my head was — I bought the tickets, I got out of bed, I got ready, I drove all the way down here, dealt with dinner drama and Belltown creepers — I was going to this show. Even if this parking space was costing me $20.
When we finally got in the door, we bee-lined it for the bar and each got doubles. I’m not sure if it was the alcohol or it was destined to happen, but my fever started to break right before the show started. Not cool (pun intended).
But honestly, that was where my misery story ended.
White Arrows were the opening act for The Neighbourhood and I have to say it was one of the very rare times that the openers impressed me more than the headliners. Usually I’m barely tolerating the opening bands while I grow more and more impatient for the last band, but I was actually disappointed to see White Arrows go off stage; and no, it wasn’t just because I developed a mega-infatuation with their bassist, Steven Vernet, in less than 2 minutes. White Arrows produces some interesting tunes that can go from electric cacophony into rolling and soft vocals that makes you sway listlessly before the hooks pick you back up to get your toe tapping before you lose it and start dancing. There’s even some element of beach, here (besides the flower shirts). Think: maracas, lummi sticks and tambourines among other things you haven’t seen since elementary school music class. The best part about all of this being seemingly chaotic is that it’s organized so well together somehow. It just feels good, and there’s no better way to describe it. Sometimes Mickey Schiff, the main vocalist, seems to channel a little Dylan in his voice which I can always dig.
Maybe it was the entirely-too-long break in between sets, or maybe it was how much White Arrows rocked, or maybe I was still dreaming about my boyfriend-who-doesn’t-know-it-yet but comparatively, The Neighbourhood was just OK. And I only walked away with two songs that I really liked. As for the White Arrows, I’ve downloaded their still-growing collection (legally, of course) and I’ve got them on repeat.
It wasn’t what I expected, but I’m definitely glad I made it.