Les Claypool
"March 27, 2009"

Electric Factory, Philadelphia, PA

If you're into jams and bands in costume, then Les Claypool's Oddity Faire tour would have been right up your alley. But it was a unique lineup that was often trying. Up tempo good time country rockers O'Death got fans stamping their feet and raising their drinks while hooded cape wearing Secret Chiefs 3 jammed on instrumental tunes with that classic Krautrock/progressive rock sound before Saul Williams' mix of electronic hip hop and spoken word poetry blew his predecessors away, if only with the sheer change in tone -- not to mention outfits as his own band featured one member dressed as a sheik and another in a shiny silver suit.

When Claypool finally did make it to the stage he was accompanied by a trio of tuxedo-wearing band members. Dancing and prancing around stage throughout his performance, Claypool -- and a variety of props from an old safari hat to the pig mask and another mask with a long and protruding nose -- seemed to be having a good time, even making bowing his upright bass into a show. But his vocals, which started too low, seemed rather unchanging such as on "Red State Girl" where the frog-like croak was either missing or lost in the large venue. With every song turning into a jam by the cello and marimba, Claypool seemed to rely too heavily on the other musicians. It's clear everyone on the stage was an extremely talented musician but even the jams and solos were relatively heavy on repetition.