Sound Check: July 2008

on

I never thought I’d be talking about my grandma during an

interview, but the Cliks, who were in Chicago last month for the True Colors

tour
, got me going on my dear old lady. Bassist Jen Benton and drummer Morgan

Doctor were excitedly telling me about their performance on The Craig Ferguson Show recently and how

it was filmed in the same Los Angeles

studio as the soap opera The Young and

The Restless
.

"I was in Jack Abbott’s living room," Jen boasted.

I told them my grandma was a huge fan, and she’d be so jealous if she knew

these ladies had been in the presence of the 50-year-old man or his living room.

"And I met Sharon!"

Doctor said, referring to another character I’m sure my grandma is familiar

with. "They were so excited to have young people on the set."

The Cliks

The Cliks hail from Toronto,

so I thought surely they would also be fans of Degrassi, but they both were unfamiliar with

the current incarnation of the show and only recalled the original series from

the ’80s. I guess they have more in common with my grandma than me (unless I’m

the odd one who watches tween shows on The N), but I won’t hold that against

them.

The band played the True Colors tour last year as well, so

they’re familiar with the inner workings of the Cyndi Lauper-helmed fest, which

benefits the Human Rights Campaign.

"It’s more musical this time," Benton said. "There’s more musical acts,

more bands."

Doctor agreed, also noting that both the bands and the

audience is more heavily female this year with acts such as Tegan and Sara, the

B-52’s
and Rosie O’Donnell doing stand-up. Having just finished opening for the

Cult, this audience is quite a change for the Cliks, but they are enjoying it.

"It’s nice that we continually go upwards," Doctor

said. She noted how excited the Cliks were to receive the NewNowNext Brink of

Fame award recently as well.

"As an artist it’s great," she said. "You do

what you do no matter what, but it’s great to get acknowledged for it."

After True Colors comes to an end, the Cliks will return to Toronto and work on

their follow-up to 2007’s Snakehouse.

Then next year, they will tour South Africa and Germany.

In addition to their love for daytime soaps, I quizzed them

on any True Colors tour gossip. "We’re trying to get Rosie to be the fifth

Clik," Doctor said. I prompted them for something more sexy or scandalous.

"Morgan and [True Colors host] Carson [Kressley] are

having an affair," Benton said, laughing. Hey, you heard it here first.

Onstage that night at the Chicago Theater, the Cliks were

tight and focused as they breezed through a set of three new songs, as well as

their cover of Justin Timberlake’s "Cry me a River" and their Snakehouse single "Oh Yeah."

Tegan and Sara played a short set of their most well-known

hits, such as "Living Room," "Walking With a Ghost" and

their gay marriage song, "I Was Married." The sisters kept

their stage banter to a minimum in the interest of saving time, as they had to

scurry offstage to make way for Rosie O’s stand-up and the B-52’s and Cyndi

Lauper’s performances of songs from yesteryear.

It was a gay affair, but I have to say, I didn’t see any

sparks flying between Morgan and Carson when they shared the stage. They must

have had a lovers’ quarrel before the show.

RELEASES REVIEWED

Hercules

and Love Affair
is a new buzz band — you know the kind: hailed by Pitchfork and the New York Times, remixed by party DJs and fawned over by vinyl

geeks. But honestly, the band’s debut self-titled album is worthy of praise.

The disco collaborative features out singer Kim Ann Foxman alongside ringleader

Andrew Butler and other guest crooners Antony and Nomi Ruiz.

Hercules

and Love Affair


Contemporary

New York electro-disco is what H&LA play, and the concept for the album (as

well as the band’s moniker) is Greek mythology. It’s playful, easy to follow

and — most importantly — easy to dance to. Greek tragedy makes for great

lyrical fodder, and the voices of all four bandmates give the songs some

much-needed variety. Why have one vocalist when you can have a handful?

Though

I have to admit my favorite songs are the ones Kim Ann sings. I’ve mentioned

the track "Athene" in Sound Check before. If you haven’t heart it

yet, check it out as well as their single "Blind" and, you know, the

entire album.

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