Regina Spektor and Only Son at Fillmore Miami Beach, November 17

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez
Regina Spektor
With Only Son
Fillmore Miami Beach
November 17, 2012

Better Than: An Audrey Tatou movie marathon.

Last night, Regina Spektor -- the reigning queen of quirky, folky, and hyper-emotive piano pop -- filled the Fillmore Miami Beach to the brim and inflamed nearly one thousand separate smiles.

Opening act Only Son (AKA Jack Dishel) was a one-man band that managed to negate the entire charm of a one-man band. Typically, the appeal lies in some sort of skilled multitasking, usually via loops or dexterous multi-instrumentalism.

But Only Son's take on the form involved fully loaded backing tracks (drums, bass, synthesizer effects, soaring strings, etc.) accompanied with a little guitar here and there. On average, a fifth of the sounds you heard were happening live. And subsequently, the set felt a little amateurish.

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez

Dishel can play and he can sing. He can write strong songs too. They sound like R.E.M. beefed up with Andrew Bird's orchestral oomph. However, he's doing himself a massive disservice by not finding a backup band or figuring out a more interesting way to deliver his material.

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez

Regina Spektor, on the other hand, was accompanied by a drummer, a cellist and a keyboard player, all of whom perfectly framed her babbling-brook show tunes piano playing and highly literate (not to mention epically sentimental) lyrical content.

Emotional discharge is key to Spektor's formula. In fact, it appears that next to her obvious virtuosity, her confessional storytelling and romantic (in every sense) musings, may be her audience's favorite quality. They responded with equal abandon, screaming her name and fanatic shouts of praise, mixed with simple screams of "Thank You!!!" as well as less intelligible wails of adoration.

Photo by Marta Xochilt Perez

Regina also lived up to her quirky reputation. She squeaked minimally between songs in her distinct Bronx-by-way-of-Mother-Russia accent, and scatted like a jazz singer while her tasteful light show cycled through displays that mostly recalled the The Wizard of Oz's Emerald City or decorations at an "Under The Sea"-themed dance.

Location Info


The Fillmore Miami Beach

1700 Washington Ave., Miami Beach, FL

Category: Music

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