I saw the first punk playing recently in the Village (formerly the Mean Fiddler, formerly The Wexford Inn), my first time seeing him in years. This was not a great concert. The Village is a pretty suck-ass venue, with loads of design flaws, and the place was over-full, with a few too many trend and event people. That twunt who kept video recording Richman was a typically annoying individual.
Musically, the concert seemed a bit stop-start. Things seemed a bit slow to get going – maybe we were suffering form the lack of a support band. Richman himself was a bit too keen to dance instead of play, as though he felt obliged to show the various young ladies present that he still had it.
Still, it had its moments. One of these was Richman's arch comment on the just passed Lisbon Treaty: "We've been travelling around Europe on this tour. I hear you are going to be having a lot more to do with those guys". His coming back onstage after an encore to grab his stuff and then walk through the crowd to the exit was a wonderfully theatrical touch.
And he played some great songs. 'Pablo Picasso', notably. This reminded me of that great Jonathan Richman paradox – so many of his songs are about being unlucky in love, when he has plainly had more muffs than I've had hot dinners. Such is life.