Tales from Inman Square

Walking through Inman Square on Sunday night, on the way to pick up take-out from our favorite Indian place, and we lingered outside of our favorite book store (can you sense the Inman Square love here?) for a moment, stopped in our tracks by the odd occurrence of a Sunday night concert amid Lorem Ipsum’s awesomely inviting shelves of gently-worn, dusty classics, and non-classics - the Ipsum crew will happily place On The Road beside an unauthorized biography of Vanilla Ice... it’s fantastic. The band was scattered about - bearded lead singer plopped on the floor, acoustic guitar in hand and a MacBook nearby; female bass player (are female bass players always hot?) leaning on a shelf near the front window; a talented female multi-tasker wedged in between non-fiction and music bios, pinging away on the xylophone with one hand, and playing keys or melodica with the other. Turns out you can’t linger long when there are only a handful of people in the audience - the band finished their song, introduced themselves (Tim Williams, the indian-style-favoring lead singer, and a slew of friends from New York), and lured us in from our doorway perch, with the promise of two more songs. The wait for Saag paneer was worth it - Williams plays textured folk with an experimental edge - but not in the “freak”-y kind of way, more of a shout out to The Flaming Lips' weirdness kind of way. Weird folk? Did we just invent a new genre? Take that, NME! The songs are sparse and relatable - as folk always feels like it should be - who can’t relate to a song about the stress of inevitable end-of-the-month bill pile-ups?  But Williams knows how to add just enough crackly-sounding string loop here, gentle drumming there, and groaning oboe there, to make it intriguing.  Turns out he’s all over the place in the next few weeks - on Sept. 19 he’s playing a live set on WERS, then a show at Lily Pad.  Songs are streaming on his website here, and on his MySpace here.

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