sinful savage tigers @ johnny’s

sinful savage tigers @ johnny's

andrew marlin @ johnny's

As recently as last summer, I would groan and grouch and roll my eyes at shows in strange venues; the light is wonky, or the background is awful, or everyone is sitting down and I feel totally awkward standing on the side of the stage taking photos. Sometime in the last year that changed — strange venues give you something unusual, or the light is great, or you can perch on a bench at the front of the room and have a perfect sightline to everyone in the band. I know what I can do in traditional venues. Give me a challenge, these days.

Not that shooting or listening to Sinful Savage Tigers is ever a challenge; a project from Seth Martin, because he was tired of writing the same old sad songwriter love songs, they’re fused together by his great songwriting and his band’s exceptional musicianship, and they’ve been one of my favorite discoveries of 2011 — especially because I discovered them at the Station, although I don’t think opening for MagCo though I could be wrong (someone not me might remember, but I pulled a double header that night, so, uh, no dice), on St. Patrick’s Day. A place I’d never been before this year, on a day I don’t usually go out, and a band I’ve fallen hard for. They played to a tiny crowd at Johnny’s yesterday, but they sounded fantastic and I’m unbelievably excited to be working with them on promo photos for their upcoming LP.

I’ve said before that I hate shooting promo stuff, too, and once again that’s starting to change; it helps that Seth is unbelievably sharp and understands when I wave my hands and tell him that we have to make a photo that looks like Sinful Savage sounds. We’ve got some big ideas and I’m getting ready to start doing location scouting leg work this week, and I think it’s going to be a blast.

Mandolin Orange’s Andrew Marlin — who also plays with Sinful Savage — opened with some new solo stuff, and he’s so talented it makes my heart ache, sometimes. What a gorgeous voice.

Full set is here.

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