Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Event - The Doubleclicks and Sarah Donner at the Way Station, April 4th, 2014, and The Doubleclicks and Molly Lewis at Jammin' Java, April 7th, 2014

Today is my birthday. This video is from Monday, April 7th, and is the culmination of a really fantastically nerdy weekend. This video is, in fact, the Doubleclicks singing their nerdy Happy Birthday song to yours truly, which was both unexpected and amazing. This is one of the most nerdy cool things that I have had happen to me, and it transformed the excellent Monday concert that the redhead and I attended into the most epic and awesome concert I have ever experienced in my life.  But that was the end of the story. Let's go back to the beginning.

A while back, the redhead and I learned that the Doubleclicks were going to be performing on April 4th at the Way Station, a Doctor Who themed bar in Brooklyn, New York. Because I have family in New York who coincidentally live within a couple blocks of the Way Station, we arranged to travel up the coast and combine a family visit with a journey to see our favorite band. The first thing to say is that the Way Station is a very awesomely nerdy place. The entire bar is decorated in steampunk decor, the drinks bear Doctor Who themed names such as the Stormageddon and the Captain Jack, and the rest room is a TARDIS with a Dalek and picture of the Fourth Doctor painted on the wall.

Once we were settled in with some tacos (the Way Station doesn't serve food, but they allow patrons to bring food to eat, or even order food for delivery), Sarah Donner started her set. We had never heard her before, but with songs like Schrödinger's Cat's Reply and That Was a Pegasus, she quickly made us into new fans. But the main event of the night was Aubrey and Angela, and when they took the stage they demonstrated their mastery of nerd folk leading off with Will They or Won't They and then reeling off excellent performances of Worst Superpower Ever, Lullaby for Mr. Bear, Wonder, Cats and Netflix, Lasers and FeelingsThis Fantasy World, Nothing to Prove, Ennui (On We Go), Clever Girl, and Love You Like a Burrito. Because of the constraints of the forum they were performing in, their set was only an hour long, but they packed the hour with nothing but excellent songs. This was the third time we have seen them, and every time, they have been better than they were before.

After we had made plans to go to New York, the redhead discovered that the Doubleclicks had scheduled a performance for April 7th at Jammin' Java in northern Virginia (this time appearing with Molly Lewis), just a short trip from where we live. It took us about three seconds to decide that we should go to that show as well (and the only reason it took us that long is that we needed to figure out if our train from New York would get us to Virginia in time to make it to the show). But before then, we were spending the weekend in New York with my sister. Which turned out to be fortunate, because it meant that we were able to do a favor for the Doubleclicks, who reached out to us through twitter and asked if we would take care of a small problem they were having. I'm not going to go into detail as to exactly what Aubrey and Angela asked us to do, because that's a story for them to tell, but we were happy to do it for them.

After a weekend in New York that was made incredibly enjoyable by my sister and her husband (and which included, among other things, a trip to the top of the Empire State Building and a lunch as Tom's Restaurant which was made famous by Suzanne Vega's song Tom's Diner) we made our way back to the Washington D.C. area and settled in for our second Doubleclicks concert in four days. First up was Molly Lewis, who we had seen a couple years before when she toured with Jon Coulton and Paul & Storm, and as good as she was then, and has gotten even better. After opening with a cover of Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down), Molly ran through her impressive collection of ukulele based originals ranging from I Pity the Fool to An Open Letter to Stephen Fry to a song named Kapo which involved musing on the possibility that her vagina could detach itself from her body and fly about. She ended her set by having the Doubleclicks join her for The Year of the Beard, and as none of the three ladies have beards, they called Storm DiCostanzo of Paul & Storm to the stage to both assist in singing the song and show off his impressive beard.

Once Molly's set was over, the Doubleclicks took the stage and delivered a brilliant set of their infectious, adorable, and incredibly geeky material. They performed most of the songs they had sung in their set at the Way Station, but as they were not working with as restrictive time constraints, they were able to go deeper into their catalog and added Spock Impersonator, Oh Mr. Darcy, The Guy Who Yelled Freebird to their set list, and an encore consisting of an unrehearsed version of Ironically. And, of course, they performed the modified Nerdy Birthday Song for me. To finish their regular set, Aubrey and Angela brought Molly back to the stage as well as Storm for a rousing performance of Love You Like a Burrito, and true to form, Storm picked up the keyboard cat and stole the show by making Angela laugh so much that she temporarily lost her place in the song. Then Storm cranked out a hilarious keyboard cat solo and further derailed the song, but to be fair, it was the best possible derailment one could have hoped for. As good as they had been the Friday before, their performance on Monday was even better. This is a clear trend: I've seen the Doubleclicks live four times now, and each time they have been even better than they had been the time before. Given the brilliance of the first performance of theirs that I saw, that is quite an accomplishment.

I can't think of a better way to bracket a weekend than two concerts by the Doubleclicks unless one were to throw Sarah Donner and Molly Lewis into the mix as well. As a result, this past weekend was pretty much as enjoyable as I could hope for. Since I found them on YouTube three years ago, Angela and Aubrey have developed a repertoire of catchy, sweet, and nerdy songs that, when combined with their adorably dorky and funny stage presence, has made them into one of my favorite bands.

Also, did I mention that they sang their nerdy birthday song for me?

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