Regina Spektor, Orpheum Theatre, October 14, 2007
Regina Spektor was of nervous, twitchy mien when she arrived on stage at the Orpheum last Sunday, next to a piano and a disco ball on the floor. She thumped the microphone with her finger, sounding a heart-like beat that was the only accompaniment on her opening “Ain’t No Cover.” Reflections of her white arms swam in the polished piano case as she sang her fizzy a cappella, hitting high and low pitches that she finished off with a croak and the lyric “But I love none other/’til the day I die.”
AH AH AH AH AH: Regina Spektor's mouth is full of anomalous voices.
Spektor has classical-trained piano chops. When she sings, she clucks, she gasps, she sucks her teeth before letting loose an “Ah, ah, ah, ah, ah!” It’s as if she had hidden the “little bag of cocaine” she alludes to in “Hotel Song” in her mouth. “Fuck, what’s the next word?” she stammered during “On the Radio.” The crowd cheered for this coquettish, candid moment in her odd opera of distorted and drunken sounds. She also played a turquoise guitar on “Bobbing for Apples,” a song about people next door “fucking to one of my songs.” And she played a chair with a drumstick, irregularly thwacking, making the most of the occasional crack in her voice. After a standing ovation, her encore included “Us,” “Hotel Song,” “Fidelity,” and “Samson.” Spektor was never predictable, and each song outdid the previous. She sighed with her whole body, sang with her whole mouth, and in all of her anomalous voices she captured something like what is hiding under strange, grown-up beds. Finally, she curtseyed.
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