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Rudyard's, Houston, TX
Tuesday, 23 January 2001

with Ghostcar

Review #1 | Review #2

So I am operating on 3 hours sleep, which is to say not very well. Drove to Houston from Austin after work yesterday and right back to Austin after the show. Forgive if any strangeness manifests itself in this message.

Low played at Rudyard's. It's a nice club on the second floor of a bar/pub where they played the last time they were in Houston. I was accompanied by our lovely webmistress Catherine Lewis, who was a sparkling traveling companion. It's better to see Low with a fellow fan. The opportunities for knowing smiles are greater. Tables & chairs were available so no need to sit on the floor. Anyway, they went on really late (suck if you've got a three hour drive in front of you) to a full but not packed room. They all looked great & well-rested. I shall endeavor to list the songs played. These are probably not in the right order.

John Prine (why isn't this on the album?! Dang shame)
Medicine Magazines
Like A Forest
Two Step
Below & Above
Dinosaur Act
Over the Ocean
In Metal
Alan & Mimi's voices are strong & clear. The vibrato on John Prine was the cause of my first wave of goosepimples. Even Zak sang at the end. He should sing more. Yes.
Hey Chicago
It's true, the most unexpected of encores. After huddling in a corner as many stalwarts whooped & clapped, they returned to the stage to play Hey Chicago. Someone had yelled it out but I think they dscided before that. Just really random. Then the cries for Lullaby returned. See, earlier when Alan was taking suggestions, this drunk woman (part of a group of annoying talkers) pleaded for Lullaby. In the encore, she took up the cause again. Alan offered that they played it the last time in Houston. Didn't want Houston Lullabye Syndrome (very serious illness apparently). Drunk woman countered that it was her favorite song & that she'd give the band $20 to play it. This was bumped up to $40 in due course prompting Zak to grimace & say "I don't want to feel slutty." Or something like that. Catherine will remember better. The drunk woman scurried up front & laid the money on the stage. Alan thought it should go to the guy up front that made some kind of whore comment. Maybe it was commentary on the situation, maybe it was a request. So, they played it (can't believe they remember how it goes) and Zak gave the drunk woman her money back.

Other moments:

Fan: Do you know any Galaxie 500 songs?
Alan: No. But those guys played our songs all the time.
Audience: laughter
Alan: I don't even know what that means.
Alan: Led Zeppelin played our songs a lot too.
Alan's bad attempt at Stairway to Heaven intro.


Zak (after the show selling merch): You gave me too much money. Why do these Texans keep giving me too much money?
Alan: Don't they know there's a recession?

I think that's about a long enough review.

- st. denis (pulling for Hands So Small sometime in Texas)

Good club, beautiful show. I was lucky to be in Houston that night ... enjoyed meeting a few fellow listees. Openers Ghost Car were a gloomy, horn-fronted instru-rock group; maybe file them somewhere between Tortoise and Squarepusher. I liked.

Midnight or so, the headliners. Alan played the first few numbers on a 12-string, then switched to 6 around "Two Step" or so. No organ to be found at this performance. Just the straight-forward rawk we know & love. There were two or three charming cover charge dodgers at the bar trying their best to spoil the mood with incessant chatting and giggling, and I found myself straining, eyes squeezed shut (particularly during "Below and Above"), to send little silence-darts in their direction. To almost no effect ... but I ended up going through almost the whole set just listening, not watching. And it was gorgeous.

I'm the guilty party who yelled for "Hey Chicago" at encore time (which is the only song I've ever heard Low play twice in one evening ... several years ago at Schuba's in Chicago). They seem to like doing the "little" songs for encores... And yup, "Lullaby" rocked even the boisterous folks to sleep.

Got the new CD. Waited til I got home to San Francisco yesterday to put it on.

- David Parrish

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