Live at Globe Hall.
TEXT BY TIM HINELY/ PHOTOS BY DINA HORNREICH
New Zealand’s The Beths have certainly been on a tear as of late. On the heels of their terrific debut record Future Me Hates Me (Carpark Records) released nearly a year ago they have been touring their asses off the past year (I know a pal in Cleveland has seen them three times already).
Well, they finally made it to Denver on what must’ve been the hottest day of the year and I’m not sure the AC was working in the sold out Globe Hall. A sold out crowd in a small club on the hottest day of the year with no AC adds up to …a rough night.
…but the Beths were great. The New Zealand quartet, apparently jazz music majors at their local university, sure know how to do the clever, hooky pop thing very well based on the strength of leader/vocalist/guitarist Elizabeth Stokes’ excellent songwriting. Apparently the instruments they’re playing now (guitar/bass/drums) are not their first instrument but you’d never know it as the band is as tighter than a military bed sheet (and twice as fun).
They basically played all of the debut album, opening with “Great No One” then ripping right into “Not Running” and then into “You Wouldn’t Like Me.” All sounded great. Stokes and the rest of her band, guitarist Jonathan Pearce, bassist Benjamin Sinclair an drummer Ivan Luketin-Johnson were really on. All this touring has made them like a well-oiled machine and it really shows.
Toward the end we heard a few new ones that sounded real strong and then ace cuts like the title track to the album and “Uptown Girl” (beats Billy Joel by a mile) and they called it night.
They may or may not have played their Death Cab for Cutie cover (“Soul Meets Body”) as an encore because I left when the set ended as I was roasting (I was actually getting dizzy and nauseous).
Back to the set, Stokes can be hilarious in the most deadpan way possibly, chatting up the crowd a bit. And they seemed happy, if a bit bewildered, at all of the screaming fans and adulation. I can’t wait to hear record #2.