Monday, January 14
THEIR pairing last year, on the album Love this Giant, was widely regarded as one of the best collaborations of 2012. On Monday night, augmented by a 10-piece band at Hamer Hall, David Byrne and St Vincent (aka Annie Clark) showed that more can sometimes be more. Love This Giant grew from what was intended to be a one-off show.
At Clark's suggestion, brass was added to their line-up, and the results inspired a record's worth of material - songs that show the idiosyncratic vocals of each artist, as well as inventive, chaotic funk and orchestral arrangements that Byrne and Clark share the credits for.
Live, the brass section shared the spotlight with the singers, and the 12 performers spent nearly two hours engaged in odd but charming choreography that included a conga line and recalled Monty Python's Ministry of Silly Walks sketch.
Annie-B Parson is responsible for the choreography, Byrne said, and though she's worked with Mikhail Baryshnikov, you would not know it from these moves.
Clark confessed to being a fan of Byrne's from the age of three (now 30, she's half his age). But their relationship is clearly one of mutual respect, and Clark was given her own opportunity to shine while performing St Vincent songs as a soloist, as well as supporting Byrne on a few Talking Heads hits. If the album is something of an acquired taste, Monday's joyous show would have proved hard for even the uninitiated to resist.