The Soft Pack + Harlem at Lollapalooza 2010: Live review
The Soft Pack are dull. No way around it. I wouldn't expect much from a band without to stones to stick with it's original name, the Muslims. Though "soft" is a more suitable adjective for the bands surf-inflected basement jangle. The only highlight was a couple members joking about being former glass-blowers for Cypress Hill. Yeah, that was the only memorable moment from the unending, unchanging three chord strumming and standing-in-place-ing.
I wandered for Harlem for a predictably sloppier take on stander garage racket. Some dude in the crowd yelled, "You blew away the Dead Weather the other night!" By every other account, this is miles from the truth. With a kick drum the size of hummer tire and beach-bum attire, the Austin trio bashed through songs from it's recent Matador release, Hippies. "We haven't played a show in two days," the drummer and co-shouter said. "But we were never that good at it to begin with." Indeed. In the first song, a guitar string broke. This after the guitarist forgot to tune his instrument in sound check. "Anybody work here who can change a string?" I wanted to say the shambling nature of the band was charming, or at least human compared to the Soft Pack. But the hot-and-not-bothered vocals, shrieking over the skeleton punk, kept me from really enjoying this as much as the record. But as I sit here and suffer through Blues Traveler, I'm started to recall these sets more fondly. Must. Escape.