Timber Timbre Provides a Dynamic Soundtrack in San Francisco
The past few years of my life have played host to many a night in which Timber Timbre has taken center stage.
Having spent a significant amount of my time with fellow poor musicians and struggling artists, it was by no means rare for me to choose to get weird at someone’s house in lieu of dropping much-needed cash at bars.
These nights often morphed into Timber-Timbre-time, with the Canadians providing the sonic backdrop for many a shenanigan. Yet, it wasn’t until recently (Thursday, June 5, to be exact) that I experienced the group in person at The Independent in San Francisco. It was a rare show for which I had absolutely no expectations. I’d been fairly familiar with Timber Timbre’s music, and had given the band’s new record Hot Dreams a couple of listens, so I knew there would be moments of power and moments of softness. I figured Taylor Kirk and his crew would take us on a ride, of sorts. I was blown away, though, at just how captivating the show was.
The crowd at large wasn’t necessarily as bewitched as I was at the beginning. There was idle chit-chat here and bar blubbering there. Moreover, an odd, and strictly enforced, no-photo policy threw the slightest ripple of discontent though the ranks. The guy beside me boldly whipped out his iPhone for a quick shot (for which he chose to utilize his flash) and was promptly approached by a staff member and forced to delete it. I can’t lay too much blame at the audience’s feet, though. On top of the staff enforcers, the set came out of the gates with a definite melancholy. All the same, the band was excited for it. I don’t know if I’ve ever witnessed so much raw passion flowing through the veins of such brooding music.
Timber Timbre on an Uphill Climb
Dynamic range, and absolute control of it, is what Timber Timbre is all about. Once we all let go of our assumptions of what the show would give us and accepted what we were actually getting, I believe everyone in the building realized how special this night was. The band crested the first uphill climb of the set by substituting a baritone guitar for the traditional bass and launching into its characteristically catchy brand of cinematic, folky, western, weird doo-wop. I know what you’re thinking, and yes, that is quite a list of adjectives to describe a genre of music. Still, I can think of no better group of words to illustrate the aura of Timber Timbre. The highlight of the show was “Black Water” off of the 2011 release Creep On Creepin’ On. Other strong points included “Woman” and “Lonesome Hunter” from the same record, “Magic Arrow” and “Demon Host” (which led off a genuinely begged-for encore) from 2009’s self-titled endeavor, and “Curtains?!” from the recently released Hot Dreams.
These guys put on one helluva show. It’s a soundtrack for an evening that truly goes somewhere, for better or worse, and sends you off with a story to tell. If that’s not enough of a glowing endorsement, then let me say this. Go see them, with no notion of what you’ll witness, and you shall have a mighty fine evening.
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