Spiritual Heroine

Dead Men Sing No Songs?

Sing Sing Dead Man
with Knock Down Ginger and Spiritual Heroine
The Town Pump
Vancouver, B.C.
Thursday, July 11, 1996

Review by Daniel Ewacha
Photography by Rodney Gitzel

Yippie! A showcase of three Vancouver bands relatively unknown to me were playing at the Town Pump last Thursday -- yet another opportunity to experience some of this city's best in musical entertainment.

Truthfully, I was too tired to go out, but felt that it was my duty as a world class music reporter... okay, stop laughing!.. to cover this show, and boy, was I glad I did! The music of Spiritual Heroine, Knock Down Ginger and Sing Sing Dead Man didn't revive me from my groggy state of being, but did keep me awake long enough to experience fully the fruits of their labours before serenading me back into my siesta.

Knock Down Ginger Spiritual Heroine were first on the bill. Imagine old R.E.M. and Babes in Toyland being joined together in holy matrimony by the Cocteau Twins. That, in a nutshell, is Spiritual Heroine. Their music covers a wide range of musical spectrums, filling every nook and cranny along the way. I didn't get an opportunity to ask them how long these particular musicians had been playing together, but I assume not too long, due to the missed cues and unbalanced timing. Yet the effort was there, and the general response from the sporadic yet growing audience was positive.

Knock Down Ginger were on trial, I mean on stage, next. "Knock me two times," as the old Doors' song goes, or is it "Love me two times?" Hmm. In any case, love was in the air as Knock Down Ginger spewed out their "grandmother lovin' Saturday morning wake up at 6:30 a.m. eat five bowls of Lucky Charms and drink four huge glasses of Quik and watch cartoons till 12:30 p.m., feeding the cat, high school puppy love" music. Who says woman can't rock, or that three- or four-part harmonies have no place in rock? Not I. And after this performance by this lovely female-dominated band, I defy anyone to say anything different, thank you very much.

Sing Sing Dead Man And finally, ladies and gentlemen, I present Sing Sing Dead Man. If I had known there was music like this being made in Vancouver, I would have been a much bigger supporter of local music than I have been in the past. In simplest terms, Sing Sing Dead Man rule, okay?! Possessed by the likes of Morrissey, the Cure and Pink Floyd, SSDM brought back fond memories of the 80's music scene, and put on a tight, clean show. I, unfortunately being without real transportation (read car), and having to rely on that joke of a subway (read Skytrain), had to leave earlier than I wanted to, but rest assured that I will be front and centre at Sing Sing Dead Man's next gig.

As a side note, I want to use this opportunity to use my power as a music reporter... stop laughing!... to manipulate the media and sound off at this stupid idea of having the last Skytrain leaving downtown at 1:15 a.m., 45 minutes before the clubs shut down, leaving many of us who are stuck living out in the suburbs the choice of leaving a club earlier than we want to, or staying 'til the end of the show and shelling out an extra $10, $20 or $30 for a cab ride home. I say we revolt! Thank you.

First published in Drop-D Magazine on July 25, 1996

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