I wasn't familiar with the first opener, Casiotone for the Painfully Alone, though Susie had coincidentally mentioned them a few days before. In any case, "them" turns out to be a misnomer, because it's just one dude, Owen Ashworth, with a bank of cheap Casio keyboards and some other audio equipment. It turned out to be really cool, and Shane and I both bought CDs.
I've been enjoying the album I bought, Etiquette. Two of the songs, Bobby Malone Moves Home[mp3] and Young Shields[mp3] are available for free.
You can tell that Ashworth is a film school dropout from the instructions he gave the makers of the video for Young Shields:
1 . All footage must be taken from nine different shots, each 2 minutes 59 seconds in length.
2. Each shot must be taken from a different location.
3. All footage must be shot outdoors, using only available, artificial light.
4. No script, no actors. Any persons appearing in the video must be strangers to you.
5. No stationary shots. The camera must constantly be in motion, but without zooms.
6 . No special effects, titles, or any sort of post-production treatments can be made to the images.
7. All audio must come from a single, on-location microphone.
8. All audio must be cut to match the image, without any other
audio source. hence, the song must be broadcast wherever you are filming and recorded as part of the environment.
9. The video must run for the exact length of the song.
Oh yeah, Xiu Xiu were great, too. I'd seen them once before in Minneapolis, and this time they had a drummer with them, which was a big plus. While the second opener, Shearwater, had been dramatic, it seemed forced and overdone. Xiu Xiu, by contrast, was genuinely dramatic and freaky -- it makes for a great live show.