March 28, 2002
SLOW-CORE: And while we're on the topic of moody wankers, let's discuss Idaho, shall we? No, I ain't talkin' 'bout the russet-peddling state, silly; this is a music column, remember? I'm talkin' 'bout the band, which doesn't hail from Idaho at all, but California, and is truly one of the most under-appreciated bands of the last ten years.
As someone who writes about music, I'm often faced with a conundrum: when comparing a band to another band, which might be so obscure that the reference will be lost on most of one's readers, do you go ahead and use that reference, or try to find a more universal--but likely less accurate--one? I usually opt for the former, and I have likely compared countless bands to Idaho over the years.
The band is a true progenitor of the slow-core movement, which is to say it preceded other spearheads of the genre, like Low and Bedhead, by a couple years, and that it completely embodies every signpost of it--gorgeous, downcast melodies that take a couple listens to really grab you, and eerily isolated themes that are difficult not to empathize with, executed with an unmistakably authentic outpouring of emotion. All that, and a general air of beauty and sadness.
In other words, leave the Vicodin at home, but if you're a fan of the two bands I've already mentioned, or American Music Club or Red House Painters, or anyone else that plays by the slow 'n' pretty rules, by all means throw your cash down and prepare to be transfixed.
Idaho, along with Backpedal (formerly Crosscutsaw), appears at 9 p.m. on Wednesday, April 3, at Club Congress, 311 E. Congress St. Cover is $5. For more information, call 622-8848
this show listing is/was online at Tucson Weekly
and is available here for archival purposes only