Saturday January 29th, 2000 at The Replay in Lawrence, KS

Blinder Blinder Blinder Blinder [more]

Local openers Helicopter weren't able to make it and no replacement band could be found on short notice, so Blinder opened their own show a hair before midnight. Singer/guitarist Megan Gass must have been worried about the audience as the first words out of her mouth were "It's my birthday, so you have to be nice to me." Megan later explained it wasn't the crowd that worried her, it was the birthday curse -- her previous two birthdays were spent on stage as well, and both of them turned out to be less than stellar events.

The Replay crowd wasn't going to cut her a break though and during the first three songs nearly half the bar had cleared out. The Replay is somewhat notorious for this as a majority of the audience is invariably there to hang out with friends and drink. The loud jarring music of Blinder combined with Megan's engaging (and demanding) vocals don't make for good background music anywhere, but especially in such a tiny club.

The band pressed forward and played a generally tight set full of the syncopated rhythms and deconstructionist guitar that the kids today are into. Occasionally they would dip into a free jazz moment allowing Megan's hollowbody guitar to reach back to the purpose its creators had in mind, but neither attack seemed to impress the audience much.

Bassist Mason Wendell slinked around small Replay floor emphasizing every note on his five string bass with a facial tick, obviously trying hard to get into the set even if the audience wasn't ready. But in the end, the curse held and as the audience continued to loose interest, so did the band.

At their last show at the Replay, a packed club called for an encore, on this night the band's short set ended uneventfully and the audience resumed the partying they had come to do while Blinder packed up the van and headed back east.