Phoebe Flynn '18 and Nina Donoghue '18
“Do you ever think to yourself,” Aly Spaltro candidly asked the audience, “I hope I meet a dog today?”
Pearl Street, a venue that feels like a cross between a rustic barn and your cool neighbor’s DIY punk basement, seemed like Lady Lamb’s natural habitat. After watching Lady Lamb at Jittery’s earlier in the semester, it was interesting to note how she was able to transition from an acoustic to an electric set. Many of her songs start soft and sweet and break in the middle for a heavy buildup of drums, electric guitar and Aly Spaltro’s gracefully cracking shout-voice. An electric set, complete with a drummer, keyboardist and backup singer, allowed those dynamics to be dramatically amplified, both literally and figuratively.
Like Pearl Street itself, Lady Lamb’s music feels homey and welcoming but also raw and uncontrived. She toys with dissonance and is not afraid to allow for musical resolution through the use of contrasting tensions and clashes.
Lady Lamb’s lyrics could be a page out of your secret diary or a piece at a spoken word reading. Her music is relatable but avoids generics. Spaltro seems like one of us. “Sing along,” she said to the audience at one point in the show. “I’m an introvert, and I’m up here singing!”
She erupted into “The Nothing Pt. 2,” and the crowd sung back, “Lay me down, lay me low,” like chanting fans at a soccer match.
The band practically invited the entire audience to dinner at Local Burger as they excitedly discussed their post-show plans onstage. “He would eat burgers for breakfast, lunch and dinner,” Spaltro teased her keyboardist. The audience seemed more than willing to dance and sing along, due in part to the band’s authenticity and candor.
Lady Lamb went from gentle lullabies in songs like “Sunday Shoes” to screams and cackles in “Bird Balloons,” angrily howling, “I’m a ghost and you all know it.” Either way, the audience seemed to be happy to engage in the bumpy ride, bopping along to “Billions of Eyes” and giving their significant others quick kisses during the more “slow dance” numbers like “You Are the Apple.”
Lady Lamb isn’t messing around. Her songs aren’t fluffy; there’s not one set-filler or seemingly unintentional note. She’s earnest, putting experiences of love and loss so succinctly and simply into words. She puts a magnifying glass up to everyday experiences, finding heart-wrenching emotions in the mundane. Lady Lamb manages to harness concentrated emotion, spinning honest melodies that you can feel in the pit of your stomach.
Seeing Lady Lamb in concert is not unlike the feeling of meeting a dog. You walk away satisfied and with a sense that you just encountered a force of honesty and purity.