O U T S I D E L E F T   stay i n d e p e n d e n t

Wives & Lovers live - Shake it Loose and Let it Fall

Ssshhhhhhhed for eating our nachos too loudly during a particularly preposterous folkie at Highland Grounds, we headed for Taix, a reliable venue for great music - but don't tell anyone

get the weekly Outsideleft newsletter
by LamontPaul, for outsideleft.com
originally published: August, 2006
If hangovers always sounded this painfully good, I'd have one every day

Wives & Lovers
Live at Taix Lounge, Echo Park

The lights are low in the Taix lounge and before the music seeps seductively in, the first words that you hear from the stage are "Take the ribbon from your hair..." its an insouciant whispered promise, an invitation from a more knowingly promiscuous age, it really is, and it trips from the tongue of Wives & Lovers' vocalist Steve Dietrich, as if nothing could be easier or more likely, that if you were the girl with the ribbons, oh you would... What follows is a full on memphis country soul version of  Kris Kristofferson's 'Help Me Make It Through The Night'. At last, a band worth leaving the house for.

As daring and exciting as the opening is, it's not the only moment of the night owed to Kris Kristofferson's back pages, later Wives & Lovers revisit 'Sunday Morning Coming Down' with even greater aplomb. If hangovers always sounded this painfully good, I'd have one every day.

When they ease into Tim Hardin's 'If I Were A Carpenter' the challenge for the audience is immense. The reference points all add up. It reminds me much of Tav Falco Panther Burns - and his dedication to songs not enough people paid attention to anymore. Didn't he say something about being reluctant to write new songs when there are so many great ones already out there. I think Wives & Lovers at least, were listening.

Along the way, guitarist and backing vocalist Lulu, takes over on lead vocals while Dietrich ambles around the stage, like we can't get enough of him, on another of her songs he quits for the bar.

Wives & Lovers return to Taix in Los Angeles on Thursday, September 28th. Meanwhile, for a limited time, enjoy this great introduction to the band:

Yesterday When I Was Young (2 MB)

Help Me Make It Through The Night (2 MB)

Curt Carson's guitar has plenty of Gram Parsons flourishes and bassist John Carlucci had great hands, fast, flamboyant, his playing style reminded me of a young Ali, those fast hands, those jabs, I swear to god, no less.

They close the show with an epic 'Never Been To Spain'.

At Taix, Wives & Lovers had their friend, Muddy sit in on drums (for Dale Daniel), and played without their pianist Robert Lohayza, but it seemed to impact them little. There was a touch of the mayhem of Scott Walker - when he sang Jacques Brel, about it all. Like they can't be trusted. Like Gallon Drunk at full tilt. But that's the way it's gonna be with Wives & Lovers, they're gonna shake it loose and they're gonna let it fall.

Visit Wives and Lovers Online

see more stories from outsideleft's Music archive »»


publisher, lamontpaul is currently producing a collection of outsideleft's anti-travel stories for the SideCartel, with a downloadable mumbled word version accompanied by understated musical fabulists, the frozen plastic

more stories you really could read...

thumb through the ancient archives:

search for something you might like...

sign up for the outsideleft weekly. a selection of new and archived stories every week. Or less.

View previous campaigns.

Sex and the Industry
Bargain Hunt: Pulp vs. Happy Mondays
BBC Music Day's Television Event of the Year
Poets Got Rhythm
Shane runs into buzz band Poets of Rhythm in Dublin
Jerry Orbach, star of stage, screen and television
The Roadbreakers - Big Road Blues, Released Post - Humously
In another episode from his Claremont Road biopic, Paul H recounts grabbing at the Stranglers coat tails in an attempt to turn back the M11...
Seventeen Big Ones For Sixteen
The most widely read stories published in outsideleft during 2016
Some of our favorite things...