Teetering on the razor-thin line between endearingly whimsical and totally stupid ain’t easy, so let’s cut resident alterna-cult-heroine Amanda Palmer and Seattle busker Jason Webley some slack. When the first outing of their Evelyn Evelyn side project doesn’t get tangled up in its own maudlin tongue-in-cheekiness, quality creeps in. Palmer and Webley have proved themselves capable of way better — it’s the Evelyn sisters who suck.
Even if we set aside the flak they’ve taken for maybe perpetuating stereotypes and allowing gullible people to think the conjoined-twin songsmiths exist, it’s as if the two had gotten so busy hashing out the details of their imaginary friends’ tragicomic life, they forgot to make sure all their songs were good. But not all the time: “You Only Want Me ’Cause You Want My Sister” provides folksy warmth, and “My Space” is a damn catchy ’80s-style power ballad that offers lyrical insight into the absurdity of on-line social networking.
Possibly the most elaborate and pointless exercise in name-dropping of all time, possibly part of the joke: barely audible gang vocals from a laundry list of noteworthies including, get this, Frances . . . Bean . . . Cobain.
EVELYN EVELYN | Oberon, 2 Arrow St, Cambridge | April 12-13 @ 8 pm | $25 | cluboberon.com