For those of you who, like me, have never been to The Paper Heart before, I am going to take just a minute to suggest you do so. If the average night there is anything like tonight was, there are few things that are so inexpensive and simultaneously entertaining anymore.
The first 4 or so bands consisted of a group of perhaps 10 people rotating in and out of the various "bands" and playing a pretty wide assortment of instruments. Considering the band would yell out chord changes during the song, it was remarkably good improv. I've heard rehearsed bands play less challenging music and do a worse job of it than these guys did jamming on stage. Not to mention they had great energy and interaction with the crowd (granted most of the crowd was composed of their friends). Some highlights included the accordionist diving off the stage and falling into one of the audience members' lap, the kid who played in all of the bands and just soloed the whole song, and the first kid who handed out percussion instruments to get the crowd to interact with him. None of these guys was tht great, but they were good enough that the evidence of their having fun was ample entertainment in itself.
Then there was the Flobots. Of course I love this band on CD so it's no surprise I liked them live, but one thing I wish more bands did is to change their songs live and not jsut play what's on the CD, and they did this very well, from the Rage Against the Machine cover in the middle of one of their songs to the rap battle between the two emcees, it was a very good show. The lack of an audience (despite my best efforts) was pretty depressing but the band was still really gracious anyways. I only met Mackenzie but they seemed like a very friendly bunch (Coloradans usually are really) and they seemed really glad to be playing for us even though there was about 20 people there total...which is sadly less than my band pulls sometimes. Usually bands aren't so gracious to such a small group. If you are unfamiliar with the Flobots, listen at http://www.myspace.com/flobots or listen to The Blaze, we play them (or so Becky tells me).
Hooray for fun shows.