Wild Nothing Shows Baltimore Some Love

Wild Nothing performing at Sonar in Baltimore in June 2010. (photo by Daniel)

Wild Nothing’s Jack Tatum is the current subject of the guest list over on Pitchfork. He answers the usual innocuous questions with interesting tidbits like the fact he’s digging Beach Fossils and some other Captured Tracks bands and that he really likes the new Ariel Pink album. But the one thing that caught my eye was under “Favorite City to Play In:”

Every time I play in New York it seems to get better and better, so I like playing in New York. On this past tour we did with Neon Indian, I really liked Baltimore. I don’t really have any favorites, it’s just nice to me to be able to see different places every night.


What makes that even more awesome is the fact that I was at that June show at Sonar along with Anna & Kevin, Wild Nothing really did perform amazingly that night opening for Neon Indian. The show was so great, I named it my Best Show of 2010. Tatum and his band were spot-on with everything and the music sounded even better than it did on the album. The one thing that stood out to me was the fact that once Wild Nothing started playing, I couldn’t stop moving. I haven’t been able to replicate that feeling at all with any of the recordings, even though I have been listening to Gemini and Evertide constantly.

Neon Indian performing at Sonar in June 2010. (photo by Daniel)

Oh yeah, Neon Indian was fantastic as well.

But overall it’s extremely reassuring to me to see Tatum say something like this. On most tours now, bands are going straight from Philadelphia to Washington, D.C., skipping Baltimore. Sure, there have been some good shows in Baltimore like Monday’s Real Estate set, but for the most part, bands aren’t flocking to Sonar or the Ottobar, and I’m pretty sure March’s Girls/Dum Dum Girls show at the Recher in Towson was simply an anomaly. And don’t even get me started on Ram’s Head Live — too expensive and not intimate enough — which I’ve been to twice to see The Mars Volta and The Shins, both of which are acts further up on the indie totem pole.

It’s really sad that I’ve lived in suburban Baltimore for most of my life, but I can count the shows I’ve been to in Baltimore on one hand. I either go all the way to Washington, D.C. or up to Philadelphia which can get tiring after a while. But hopefully other indie bands on the level of Wild Nothing will see Tatum’s comments and realize, “Hey, Baltimore isn’t that bad.” Baltimore is the home of Dan Deacon and the birthplace of bands like Animal Collective and Beach House. There is a scene here which means that the audience will appreciate nearly any show. And hopefully when the next band like Wild Nothing comes through, I’ll be at that show.

–Daniel

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