A pair of strong female vocalists were at the heart of the show on March 12 at Iota Club in Arlington.
Washington DC based Ditched by Kate opened with a set of alt-rock tunes built on layers of reverb and distortion. Jennifer Lyle Taylor and Phil Rossi split lead vocal duty while playing electric violin and guitar, respectively, and were backed up by guitar bass and drums. At their lowest and slowest song “I like your grave,” the pair brought to mind a less sinister version of Mark Lanegan and Isobell Campbell. At other times, an extended jam that led into a spoken word interlude and the western tinged “Smokes” displayed their willingness to experiment with a variety of influences.
Next up was Sweet Interference, another group of DC locals, whom celebrated the release of their new album The Falling In and Out. Dressed in various layers of red and black, they were led by Moira Annelin who belted out the lead vocals. In most songs, the straightforward lyrics took the form of a narrative, centering on such eternal adages as love, seduction and contempt for high school. The images Annelin conjured up were concrete, singing in “Monday Morning Recital” about getting caught in the rain; “No taxi will pick me up/ Because my dress is soaked/ Twisted up and looking totally insane.”
The band, rounded out with guitar, bass, drums and keyboard, and were happy to please the crowd. When the introduction of a new song with a tambourine was met with a call from the audience for “more cowbell,” drummer Zach Mast improvised and added it in. At the end of the night, despite a half-hearted protest that they had played all of their songs, and a false start as they tried to recall the right tune, cheers for an encore were fulfilled with a rousing run through “El Camino is a Car” from their first album Losing the Highway (released in Aug ’07).
For more information about Sweet Interface (including upcoming show information and song downloads) click here