A golden return for the thinking man's pop star.
I’ve never reviewed a show in The Workman’s Club before. A quick self-Google indicates, I may never have covered a Dublin gig at all. Perhaps it’s this which has got the butterflies in the belly going. Maybe it’s the prospect of seeing a show that’s much-hyped or then again it could be the fear of nothing living up to expectations. Whatever the reasons, I’ve got those first-date nerves, cradling a pint and awkwardly glancing at my phone. Yes, that awkward guy by the bar who’s turned up an hour early and is patiently awaiting the artists’ arrival.
Dublin’s Workman’s Lounge is beautifully ramshackle affair with winding corridors, stairs to who knows where and a cosy little downstairs venue with intimate lighting and a solid soundman. In the background the Irish brogue mingles with Canadian tones and there’s talk of poets and scholars and pints of Guinness. The scene is set for support act The Weather Station to take centre stage.
Fronted by Tamara Lindeman, they’ve rightly received high praise for their 2015 album ‘Loyalty’. With hushed vocals and delicately picked guitar, Lindeman welcomes us into The Weather Station world. It’s one of debts paid to Canadian greats like Joni Mitchell and Alanis Morrisette. The awkward silences and in-jokes are almost so bad they’re good and you get the feeling that maybe everyone’s got those date night nerves.
I found the little tapes you kept under your bed, and I played and played and played them over and over again.
Tapes – The Weather Station
‘Personal Eclipse’ namechecks Nebraska in the first verse and conjures up imagery of her Springsteen namesake with sparse guitars and cymbal rides. Far from being one-trick ponies, this group can put the pedal down with ease. ‘Way It Is, Way It Could Be’ takes things up a gear, floor toms kicking in as the set powers on easing us beautifully into an aural hinterland between openers and headliner.