by Dan Schram
Last month, on the same weekend, two of the Triangle's most popular acts held release shows for their respective new albums.
On Friday, July 26, at a packed Cat's Cradle, The Love Language debuted Ruby Red in their retooled format. While it sounded as though the group was still ironing out a few arrangements, what they played from the new album mixed well with their back catalog. A three-piece string section, saxophonist, and vibraphonist Mark Simonsen complemented the band well. The encore included the McLamb brothers and Ben Carr of Last Year's Men performing "Stars" from the center of the crowd; nearly everyone sang along.
Below, see the group perform "Kids" and "High Life" from Ruby Red, plus the group's take on The Strokes song, "The Modern Age."
The next day at Raleigh's The Lincoln Theatre, Bombadil released Metrics of Affection. The group seems to be stronger than ever, presenting their material to a younger crowd who seemed to know the words to every song, no matter how dated or fresh. As the crowd danced to the upbeat numbers and swooned to the love songs, balloons dropped in the room, sending them into fits. When the evening ended, even getting out of the door seemed tough, as I'm uncertain the last time I saw a merchandise line so long.
Below are two new numbers from Metrics of Affection: "Have Me" and "Angeline," featuring Christy Smith from The Tender Fruit.