“Valentine’s Dinner” showcase curated by Kyp Malone
Date: Wednesday, February 14
Better than: Drinking Miller alone in bed
Recorded equivalent: B-Side single
His name is Kyp Malone, alright? Because every time I say his name lately in conversation, the response is, “Who?” Then I go, “The TV on the Radio Guy.” Don’t even have to mention what he plays. Then I get back, “The actual TV on the Radio Guy?”
I guess. As the most distinctive-looking one of the blood-thirsty babes—due to his impressively awesome natural hair and fuzzy beard—Kyp Malone has become a logo for a band that actively despises branding. Weird thing is that once you hear this symbol of wolves, cookies, and mountains talk in person, you realize that he never conspired to be a character-turned-caricature; dude didn’t let his hair grow out based on how it would look on clay. Especially walking around Glasslands last night for a Valentine’s Day show he’d curated, Malone seemed totally chill. Not fake looka-me-I’m-so-chill chill, but real chill, thoughtfully chill—don’t act like you don’t know what I mean.
Glasslands listed the night’s Valentine’s Day dinner (burrito fare) as if Malone was headlining solo. In actuality, he was more like an emcee, thanking people, politely asking the blabbing masses to listen (“I know there are lots of people that love each other, but I would ask you to lend your ear”), and performing one solo piece about Laying your little head next to mine and Just you and I. You could tell there were a few, I dunno, Gothamist readers who’d stumbled into the Williamsburg place expecting full-on show from the “TV on the Radio guy.” This poor Old Navy couple who found themselves in the Glasslands Paint Room weren’t really ready for all the kaffiyehs and Cosby sweaters and brown-bag swilling. They left quickly.
Their loss. They missed Scary Mansion, gorgeously lilting singer-songwriter Leah Hayes who plays the thunderstick. Thunderstick? It’s a twangy mini-guitar that looks like a ukulele put through a pasta maker and sounds like tenderness. Hayes strapped on hers and did that I’m-a-girl-with-strings-that-can-make-you-cry-and-haunt-you-between-notes thing that turns us jaded fuckers into big quivering bottom lips. Gorgeous. I begrudgingly cuddled my beer. Thanks, Valentine’s Day. I spent the night with a Miller.
Previous experience: All things TV on the Radio, an unmentionable Voice cover.
Personal bias: I love Glasslands. I would see a flea circus there.
Random detail: I wanted to type my notes on the typewriter in the upstairs loft and then scan them in as part of this, but got through the first few words and then realized it didn’t have any ribbon. Oh well.
DOWNLOAD: Scary Mansion, “Unwise”
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on February 15, 2007