David Byrne – guitar, vocals. Annie Clark – guitar, vocals.
Love This Giant developed like many a New York City-bred friendship. Both parties are kind of hazy about how it began, but after a couple of semi-chance encounters, David Byrne and Annie Clark, who records and performs as St. Vincent, embarked upon a creative dialogue that has flourished over the last three years.
Curious, mutually appreciative acquaintances became determined co-conspirators, and the result is an album that’s brash and, quite literally, brassy. Byrne and Clark spin their intriguingly enigmatic tales, by turns whimsical and dark, backed by a large brass band in lieu of a traditional rock lineup. There is a magical urbanity to Love This Giant: It’s as if they’re dancing in the streets, their voices soaring over the rhythms, the melodies, the barely contained cacophony of the city.
Though Byrne and Clark each have an unmistakable sound and persona that have made them such compelling performers on their own, their voices manage to blend naturally, effortlessly, here. Sometimes they trade verses; at others they sing in unison. Like friends who can finish each other’s sentences, when one takes the spotlight alone, it’s often with words that the other provided. The brass lends the songs an appealing theatrical sheen while programmed percussion provides a contemporary feel. The inventive arrangements have clearly sparked some remarkable vocal performances—check out Byrne on the syncopated I Should Watch TV or Clark on the grand Optimist. Though there’s no overarching theme to Love This Giant, surreal images of nature dominate the lyrics, most of which were worked on in tandem by Byrne and Clark. The threat of natural disaster promises an emotional epiphany; urban apocalypse gives way to a garden party. (From Ilovethisgiant.com)
David Byrne & St. Vincent - Love This Giant
Also listen to: St. Vincent - Strange Mercy Talking Heads - Talking Heads: 77 Talking Heads - Speaking in Tounges
Sounds Like: Dirty Projectors, Father John Misty, Grizzly Bear, Django Django
Physical Reaction/Live Show The duo play with a backing band that includes eight brass players (led by Kelly Pratt of Bright Moments), St. Vincent's keyboardist Daniel Mintseris, and My Brightest Diamond's drummer Brian Wolfe. The performers engage in complex choreography onstage while performing.
Interesting Facts Both have played Bonnaroo twice. David played in 2004. St. Vincent played in 2012. They both played in 2009, though separately.
Annie and David decided to collaborate while attending a one time live collaboration of two other 2013 Bonnaroo artists, Björk and Dirty Projectors.
Personal Notes I saw one of their first shows together in Boston and was blown away. I can with out hesitation say it was one of the best theater shows I've ever seen. For me, it will be interesting to see how this translates to an outdoor stage setting. To me it felt more like an Annie Clark show than a David Byrne show. I got the impression that it was more of David showing off his protege. But even with this, for me the most fun was had while singing song to Talking Heads classics.