The Anatomy of Frank – Café Gramsci, Dachau; November 18th, 2017
The moment I entered Café Gramski in Dachau I had a good feeling about that concert. It was a small place with a tiny stage that barely fit the instruments. It was also very cozy and reminded me of Café Vinyl in Wetzlar where I’d seen one of my favorite The Anatomy of Farnk gigs a few years ago. 🙂 My feeling was right, the gig was amazing. Everyone had fun and they dug up a few old songs I had not expected them to play. this was easily my favorite concert of the tour (at least so far) and none of the gigs, including Iceland Airwaves, had been bad. 😀
It was a smooth trip from Innsbruck to Dachau, I had a nice hotel and even time for a walk and a rest before I made my way to the venue. I arrived too early, the doors were not open yet, but since the guys know me I was allowed inside. When A. and A. arrived they were allowed inside as well, but we had to go to the back so people would not see us. Alright then. we had not seen each other since somewhere on the Árstíðir tour last year and it was nice catching up. They invited me to their house concert with The Anatomy of Frank on the coming Monday, but I had other plans already. Eventually soundcheck was done, the doors opened and we moved to the front room , picking seats near the stage. We got drinks and chatted until it was showtime.
By the time the band took their places on stage, the cafe was nicely filled, i.e. every available seat was taken. Granted, it was a small place, but Dachau is not exactly the center of the universe either. 😉 “We’re The Anatomy of Frank” Kyle introduced them and the talking in the room immediately died down. 🙂 Before the show he had mentioned they’d bring some older songs back and they did, starting with ‘Blurry’. Especially on the high notes, Kyle’s voice sounded rough as if he had a sore throat. During ‘Photograph of Inuvik in January’ I became aware that it sounded like his nose was blocked as well and it got worse for ‘Minnesota (Part I)’. He told us he had caught one of our European colds and needed a small break to cough. After ‘Girl from Ipanema’ Kyle had to run to the bathroom to take care of he coughing fit he felt approaching, so we got a little break during which max and Jimmy improvised on drums and keyboards respectively. It was quite nice. On his return we all clapped and I offered him some cough drops. He joked that this would be the only time in his life he’d get applauded for blowing snot. 😀
‘Diagonal North America’ was announced as a song for those who like snow and cold without being able to explain why. Generally Kyle talked a lot more than the previous day and I loved it. I have always enjoyed his anecdotes and stories. For ‘La Llorona’ everyone in the room showed they were good at singing along, but even before that I wasn’t the only one who did. 😉 The audience was respectful and attentive, the atmosphere at the café was really nice and I was enjoying every moment. As the first set ended with the gorgeous and always powerful ‘Andes’ I had a big smile on my face.
The second set started with a surprise, ‘Postlude for Reykjavik’, the last song on their debut album ‘Pangaea’. I cannot recall ever hearing that one live before. It was awesome, driving drums and funny, self depreciating lyrics, just my style. With ‘Ecuador’ we were back at the current album ‘South America’ and stayed there until the end of the set. It was perfect. <3
A banjo indicated the start of the next song. “You are the one!” Kyle sang and then told us that was our part. We responded instantly and witnessed ‘The Landing f the plus ultra flying Boat’. From there they went straight into ‘Holy Mountain’ and ‘To keep our Hands from shaking’. Both are great songs, but especially the former is close to my heart. Once again I admired their playing. They create amazing melodies and almost always manage to sound even better live than they do on the recording. That is no small feat considering how well produced the albums are. Kyle spent some time introducing the others, including all the instruments they are playing (or can make the keyboard sound like) and he did not forget the unsung hero at the sound board, Vegard, either. It has only made the band better to have a sound engineer with them. 🙂
“The next song is called ‘Viteri’ and I wrote it in a really bad way… Norway” – laughter. We learned it was written in a sudden outpour of childhood memories and sadness and we heard about Kyle’s best friend David and especially his grandfather, Viteri. I cannot repeat often enough just how much I love this masterpiece of a song. It is as perfect as a song can be. The melody and the lyrics are beautiful and it speaks to my soul, moving me to tears every time. <3 Soon I was laughing again, because Kyle told us about a terrible show he played in The Netherlands where he got grumpy and kept his eyes closed and almost kicked a kid in the head. Of course it was longer story and very funny. 😀 Of course he claimed that we were a much better audience and of course he made us sing the “lalalalala” part on ‘The sunken Coast’. It was fun and got loud and slightly crazy in the end.
We cheered loudly when the band left the stage until they came back and even then kept cheering for a bit. They thanked everyone they had to thank and announced the next artists who was gonna play at the cafe and was going to be “Almost as good as this band”. Then we got the extended version of ‘Vancouver’, i.e. with a long story about how we had our dreams as “little German babies in our cozy German beds” that our “sweet mothers” replied to with a loud and resounding “NEIN!”, funny German accent and all. It was awesome! 😀 So was the sing along, which was also extended with a lot of improvising by the band who asked us to bring the roof down. I loved it! It’s always good to be reminded that it is never too late to follow your dreams. 🙂 This still was not enough for us hough and we clapped Kyle back to the stage one more time where he ended with ‘Fools rush in’. It was a great great show!
Afterwards aI hung out for a long time, talking to A. and A. as well as the guys, glass of wine by my side. It was lovely. I joked with them about both of my “folky” band having turned into Rockers and how I was gonna have to look for a new band now. Never! When I mentioned that I was going to see Árstíðir the following day, Jimmy suggested I should take a not to them. I was all for it and told him to write me one. They all did it together and folded it up nicely. I promised to deliver this love letter as soon as possible. It was going to be fun! Then it was time to say goodbye and get some sleep. Sweet dreams lay ahead.
Blurry Part I
Photographs of Inuvik in January
Minnesota Part I
Girl from Ipanema
Diagonal North America
Postlude for Reykjavik
The Landing of the plus ultra flying Boat
To keep our Hands from shaking
The sunken Coast
Fools rush in