so CRAZY! - Oh My Rockness

Recommended Show
October 06, 2005
One thing is for sure. When we started this site a year ago, we NEVER thought we'd be recommending a show that took place at Carnegie Hall. No offense to that grand establishment, but well, isn't that a place for, like, our great-aunts? You know... the ones who wear all those pearls and pelts. Boy, if this is now a new indie venue, then I guess we better figure out how to wear fur ironically... and fast!

Antony and his Johnsons have got to be one of the most unlikely indie acts to "make it big" (relatively speaking). With his warbled vibrato often arcing towards flamboyant falsetto, and his enigmatic artist status, one wonders if Antony is better suited for the MoMA rather than the stage. Yet his arresting act brings them out in droves. He recently garnered himself UK's prestigious Mercury Music Prize, and his album, I Am A Bird Now, is certainly Secretly Canadian's biggest success. Seriously, what is going on? Is there some sort of indie rock revolution taking place? If there is, let me know, and I'll TiVo it.

A.J. (as I like to affectionately call him) is the somewhat androgynous leader of this seven-piece NYC band that counts Boy George, Lou Reed, and Rufus Wainwright as fans and Devendra Banhart as friend and inspiration. Antony's warbled falsetto is unique in the same kind of way as Bro. Danielson's (minus the tree, of course) -- once you hear it, you'll never forget it (for better or for worse). You can just hear the pain and melancholy in every syllable sung. And an eclectic accompaniment of strings, pianos, flutes and horns document the dramatic hardship and heartbreak. Antony and the Johnsons is equal parts band and art project. There's just way too much going on under the surface to simply think of them in musical terms. This is a comment on the state of humanity. Love it or hate it, Antony is certainly one of the leaders of something new. And if he's playing at Carnegie, you just know he's had to practice, practice, practice in order to get there (ba-dum-dum-dum).

I suggest you go to this show and tell me what you think about all this. Because I'm not really sure... is Antony the future of indie rock, or just a flash in the overcrowded band pan? You can be the better judge.

And, most importantly, do you think Carnegie Hall sells PBR?

Antony & the Johnsons play Carnegie Hall Thursday, October 13th.


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