Sunday, November 28, 2010

Paramount Styles, Live @ An Club (Athens, Nov. 26, 2010)

"We were great, maybe not the greatest..."

Girls Against Boys was certainly among the greatest rock bands of its time, but Scott McCloud is obviously at a different place now. After 25 years of making noise rock, he clearly feels it's time for a little bit of peace and quiet introspection.

Paramount Styles, his new band which also features fellow GVSB alumnus Alexis Fleisig on drums, takes a completely different songwriting approach, with the acoustic guitar taking the spotlight and the cello playing as an important part as the electric guitar or the rhythm section. Not surprisingly, though, for a die-hard GVSB fan like myself, the highlights of this evening’s performance were exactly those Paramount Styles tracks that come closer to the old band’s sound, the moments were McCloud reconnects with his fury and Fleisig starts firing away behind his drum-kit.

Those moments came during "Desire Is Not Enough", "Come to New York" and "I Keep Losing You", reminders of the time when "we were great" as the lyrics to "The Greatest" go, but the rest of the set was a somber affair, with moody tales and acoustic melodies that sometime work ("All eyes are on you now my pet", "The Greatest") and sometimes don’t. Still, McCloud remains a captivating performer and it was certainly a pleasure to see him on stage once again performing his new material, even though this latest encounter has left us with a strong craving for the good old days.

 Paramount Styles live@ An Club

Here’s the set list of the hour-long performance which was equally divided among the two Paramount Styles albums, 2008’s "Failure American Style" and the brand-new "Heaven's Alright":

Race you till tomorrow
Take care of me
Desire is not enough
Stay alive
The girls of Prague
Come to New York
One last surprise
I keep losing you
Paradise happens
The greatest

Encore: Come to where you are

And here is a recent interview with Scott McCloud from MixGrill.

Paramount Styles - Desire is not enough (live@An Club, Nov. 26th, 2010)


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