Never one to toot his own horn, SFR’s music writer Alex De Vore kept his Wednesday W21 performance hidden from our calendar minions. Not to be outsmarted, said minions uncovered said performance wherein De Vore performs “acoustic emo songs about how girls don’t like me—a piece of information that surprises pretty much nobody.”
Hecklers with an ax to grind, take note.
What can folks attending your set expect?
I think it's actually going to be really cool. There's this band called Darto from Seattle coming, and they play really pretty indie rock with lots of cool guitar sounds and harmonies. It's also the debut show for this new two-piece brother act called Fallen Design. They told me they sound like all these bands I've never heard of, but I think I've gleaned they're alternative rock. This other band called Project Gentlemen plays a blues/folk fusion that's really quirky and totally good (they just played at Zozobra). And, of course, me. I'll just say that I never got over The Get Up Kids, I like fingerpicking and my vocal range is probably a lot higher than people would expect.
Are you nervous about competing with musical bonanza Station to Station?
Obviously that's going to be an amazing show, and at first I thought, "Fuck! Nobody is going to come see me play!" Then I realized a couple things. First off, Station to Station sold out in like, 4 minutes and I am, for all intents and purposes, an even whinier Cat Power. As such, I think my performance will be a good consolation prize for those who couldn't score tickets for S2S. Second, W21 is more often attended by teens (even though it's amazingly cool and open to the public and has the best PA in town and I don't know why people have to drink to have a good time) and I'd be shocked to learn that a whole lot of 15-year-olds were totally listening to Cat Power and/or had the money to be at S2S. Third, I don't care if I'm playing for 5 people or 500, I enjoy doing it. Some of the best shows I've ever played were to a small group of people. I like to sit close to them and have the audience gather around me so I can look them in the eyes and directly pull from their energy. Again, my songs are all about heartache and regret and self-hate, so they're really soft and seem to come off best when everyone is quietly reflecting on their own past moments of sadness. Oh, and last, I'm definitely not the kind of musician who needs everyone to pat me on the back and me and tell me I'm amazing. I think musicians like that are in it for the wrong reasons, and their sick need for approval is troubling to me.
Some of your enemies might line up with produce to hurl at you. Any preference?
I am definitely not walking around talking about how I'm amazing nor am I planning on launching an aggressive Facebook campaign outlining the reasons it is the responsibility of my fellow Santa Feans to love what I do. That said, I think that on the off-chance folks at odds with my opinions do show up to see me play, I might just surprise them. I'm no John Lennon by any means, but I certainly have my moments where I think to myself that something I've done sounds really nice. I suppose if I wind up being heckled while I play—something I've never done to anyone, by the way—that I'll be able to chalk it up to sour grapes. I'd also like to warn any would-be produce tossers that I can transform into the meanest sonofabitch you've ever met with ease, and once I've hulked out there's no stopping until one or both of us is sobbing.