Watched the new series of Jools Holland last, mainly because Radiohead were due to appear on it, and after hearing their new album, and watching their freee new years eve footage of live performances, I was interested to see how they'd come across. Also on the show was Cat Power, aka Chan Marshall, an artist who has a great voice and is a great talent.
The show itself was reasonably good, I was actually struck at how easy and undemanding the questions are that Jools Holland asks the guest that he interviews. He never really got much from his guests last night, and I thought the questions were pretty basic really. Maybe it's the news journalist in me that's started to come out recently!
Radiohead opened the show with Bodysnatchers, a great tune, though a friend of mine who isn't much of Radiohead fan wasn't impressed with Thom Yorke's 'singing', as he put it. What I like about watching Radiohead live is how they translate from the album onto the stage in terms of their music.
The other performances on the show were pretty good. I thought Feist was surprisingly good. I wasn't expecting much, and after hearing her album stuff I wasn't overally bothered by her, but live she was excellent. Cat Power, however, was the the complete opposite. I think I read a live review of one of her recent shows in the Guardian that didn't give an overly gracious review of her show, despite the jounro being a big fan. I have to say that from watching last night's show I would agree that journalist. Chan Marshall has always been something of a reclusive performer, sometimes walking off stage half way through songs unable to carry on. Not any more though, as she was completely over the top with her performance. It was an extremely extroverted performance that belied what I know about her past. The band behind her didn't help either, they drowned her voice and the songs sounded weak and unsure of where they were going. I listened to her new album, Jukebox, on the way to work this morning and I have to concede that the album versions are far better than the live versions. Everything is toned down slightly, and Chan's voice, which is fantastic becomes the really star. This all opposed to her Jools Holland performace which just seemed to be trying too hard. I'd give Cat Power a D.
Radiohead played a couple more songs, Wierd Fishes, and 15 Steps, which were both excellent, and it just made hope more that they'll be playing at Glastonbury this year. It seems a Glasto cliche to have Radiohead in the mixer, but it would be incredible for me at least!
I've given my voice a rest now, time to get back on the Radio!