Neko Case Pt. 1 at Bimbo’s 365

by chris cunningham

Oh Neko. Oh lovely, lovely Neko. She’s back with a west coast tour with a whole band this time. Although there were some minor technical problems, i.e. broken strings, a couple false starts on songs, a tambourine that she had to run upstairs to retrieve, occasional flat singing, long guitar tunings between songs, etc. it’s always great to hear her fire up the vocals. She was a little loud in the mix compared to the band but she’s swimming in reverb anyway so it’s all good. Keith and Shelli came by for dinner in North Beach and watched the show for a bit but after a big pasta dinner they were yawning non-stop. It was a school night for them anyway, but not for me. As she came out she said, “be careful with me because I’m a blood pinata”, referring to her current menstrual status. One of many things that flung out of her mouth tonight. She opened with Favorite and closed with Loretta. The band played the Benny Hill theme a few times while Neko tuned or ran upstairs to fetch her tambourine. All the new material sounded great and she almost played the new album in its entirety. Setlist included: If You Knew, Soulful Shade of Blue, Hex, Train From Kansas City, The Tigers Have Spoken, Maybe Sparrow, Blacklisted, Favorite, Rated X, Outro With Bees, Make Your Bed, Furnace Room Lullaby, Loretta, a couple of new numbers and John the Baptist. Next up, the Los Angeles show at the El Rey Saturday night. I need an intervention. Wait, no I don’t.