May live music strike you dead! #5: Trouble Over Tokyo, SOAP&SKIN, Feldkirch, A,…


20. Jul. 2008, 14:46

I was hoping for this summer full of great great music to see Trouble Over Tokyo's mastermind Toph coming over to Italy to premiere his brilliant tunes to us poor, oblivious mediterranean people. Well, apparently he has no plans whatsoever of going south - he seems caught in a teutonic fascination with Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Ok then: if Trouble Over Tokyo won't come to you, YOU will go to Trouble Over Tokyo! It's been some months of addiction to his second album, "Pyramides" - and also his first one, ""1000" (Limited Edition)" has started to grow heavily on me. When I found out he was going to perform at Poolbar Festival in Austria, I couldn't hold myself back - on my birthday, too!

I jumped on the car, fetched my dear friend Chiara on the way, and crossed swinging steep roads across the Alps to reach Feldkirch, where Poolbar takes place. When we got there, we first thought that it couldn't be the place: a nice little city, with just a few people around taking a walk or sitting outside bars for a drink. We had imagined troops of raving youngsters ready to party, or something along the lines. Instead, we ended up inside a small grey building that used to be a swimming pool. And the stage had been built right IN the empty pool! All the place was very cool, laid back but groovy at the same time. After one round of tequila and gin&tonic, we took position: first row, with our elbows right on the stage!

Opening act was Soap&Skin: I knew some songs of hers, and I was curious to hear how she sounded live. I have mixed feelings about her performance: I loved her piano playing, and no one could deny she's very intense. I guess she could use a bit more self-confidence, since she seemed scared as hell by the crowd! But, apart from the awful people at the end of the room who kept chatting and laughing all through her set, everybody cheered and applaused her a lot! She shouldn't worry so much, and ease up. Anyway, her piano playing is really good, and her voice unique (to give the idea, it could be described as a mixture of Nico and Shannon Wright's deep dark timbre, with Fiona Apple's rage and rawness). Her screams and howls halfway through the songs are chilling and shocking, as much as they give the idea of how passionate she is in performing.

Highlights of her set were the beautiful carillon-like Cry Wolf and the amazing rendition of Nico's Afraid.

Setlist (the best I could do, at least):

1. Sleep
2. Cynthia
3. ?
4. Cry Wolf
5. ?
6. ?
7. Fall Foliage
8. Mr Gaunt Pt 1000
9. Spiracle
10. ?
11. Afraid
12. ?
13. ?

When Toph came on stage with his band, I couldn't restrain the exultant joy that mounted up in me! I felt as a teenager in front of his music hero. The band was supercool, especially the chick that played the bass and the gorgerous guy that hit the drums like a machine gun (he also kept taking pics of us from the stage, nice!). And Toph is THE MAN. He seemed so enthusiastic to find such a devoted audience - even the girls who kept screaming like hell behind me (but I liked them anyway, they were so funny!): he said to them: "You're too greedy!", and we all laughed. Except for The Liar, which I prefer on the album, all the songs rocked even more live.


1. Start Making Noise
2. Is He Alive?
3. Monster
4. 4,228
5. 1000
6. Washing Away The Dirt
7. Save Us
8. Pyramids
9. No Handed (Part III)
10. The Dark Below (Oh My God)
11. The Liar
12. The Assembly Line
13. My Anxiety
14. No-Handed (Part II)
15. Eyes Off Me

On Eyes Off Me, there was just Toph and his guitar on stage. He split the public in two and made each half sing a different harmony to accompany the song. He had such a huge response, that after he said goodbye all the people (including me) kept singing for minutes, asking for him to come back. He finally did, and improvised a reprise of the song before leaving for good. But we wanted more! I wish I could stay there after the gig, so I could maybe meet him and his band hanging around, but the trip back home was long enough. Anyway, as he finished I gestured to him to come near me (I was right at his feet level); he bent down to listen, and I managed to say: "Come to Italy next time!". Hope he will soon!

Ven 18 Lug – Trouble Over Tokyo, SOAP&SKIN


  • little_ghost

    thanks for the lovely review! my sister and I were standing right beside you. :)

    20. Jul. 2008, 15:42
  • rabbitinglizard

    oh dear, the screamers! and, cazzarola, eccola!!!! FIONA APPLE!!!!!! proprio non mi veniva in mente quando ti ho detto 'mi ricorda troppo qualcuno!'. vedo anche che il piccolo fantasma qua sopra era dietro di noi. bella review baby, proud of having been your companion! W THE EMPTY POOL!

    20. Jul. 2008, 15:58
  • joghi_

    haha it was awesome ;) btw i got the setlist hehe

    24. Jul. 2008, 14:04
Alle 3 Kommentare anzeigen
Sage etwas. Melde dich bei an oder registriere ein neues Benutzerkonto (es kostet nichts).